Most modern people know about “phobias.” They are an extreme, persistent fear of a certain thing, activity, or situation. Everyone has a slight phobia to some extent, such as algophobia (fear of pain). I mean, who is not afraid of being in pain? Then there is astraphobia or astrapophobia which is the fear of lightning or thunder, particularly in small children. What child is not even mildly afraid of lightning and thunber? The “phobia” aspect though that turns these fears into a phobia is when this fear interferes with everyday life—like you do not shut doors because you are terrified of the pain involved of accidentally shutting your hand or fingers in one or move to a place with less storms even though you have no other reason to move there just to avoid lightning or thunder. All people suffering from phobias will have unreasonable desires and plans to avoid the thing they fear and when put in that situation or near the object of their fear their heart rate will increase, they will sweat, and exhibit the symptoms of someone in a truly life threatening situation. Here is a list of some of the most extreme phobias that have been documented. PLEASE DO NOT READ FURTHER IF YOU SUFFER FROM PHOBOPHOBIA (fear of phobias)!
Chorophobia is the fear of ANY dancing—tango, break dancing, ballet, and everything in between. Also, any situation or event that resembles or relates to dancing can be a cause of fear whether the person has the ability to dance during the situation themselves or not. It is generally associated with other fears such as fear of social embarrassment or of crowds. Chorophobia can be based on a person’s individual character traits that does not let them become too excited or even aroused.
Agyrophobia is the fear of crossing roads, highways, or streets. It can even include the fear of roads themselves. Sufferers experience extreme anxiety of crossing highways, roads, or streets even when no threat is present, as when the road is completely deserted, late at night with absolutely no cars are in sight. This irrationality of crossing a street without cars means that agyrophobia should never be confused with a fear of cars in general. People suffering from this phobia try to do as little walking along roads as possible and may even go through longer, indirect routes just to avoid crossing.
Ablutophobia is mostly a phobia of infants and young children. Mothers know of this phobia more than anyone else as they fight with their several pound little ball of fear and fury as they try to shove them into the bathtub. However, since almost all children have this phobia at one point in time, it is not diagnosed by professionals unless it lasts for longer than six months. Children and women are more likely to suffer from this phobia than men. Very emotional people in particular are generally the ones to develop this phobia. Since most cultures place importance on cleanliness, this phobia can become a viscous cycle as the sufferer’s uncleanliness is mocked and teased, causing feelings of shame and worsening the phobia.
Halitophobia is usually linked with a fear of bad breath in one’s self. This can manifest as delusional halitosis (where the person believes wholeheartedly in the presence of halitosis in one’s own breath but no real halitosis) or even olfactory reference syndrome (a psychiatric condition where a person is excessively occupied by the concern that one’s body odor is unpleasant). The general case is that a sufferer will ask for professional advice (from a doctor or dentist) with the unwavering thought that they have bad breath even though they have never had the courage to ask another person’s opinion. In addition to having a constant supply of strong breath fresheners (countless mints and lozenges) that they must take throughout certain periods of the day no matter what is happening they may eventually start to avoid close contact with other people for the fear of their “bad” breath affecting the relationship with the other person.