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9 Phobias That Are Surprisingly Common

U.S. News & World Report - Health Logo By Lisa Esposito of U.S. News & World Report - Health | Slide 1 of 11: An experience, act or thing that you find totally benign can be another person’s nightmare, whether it's a fear of heights (acrophobia), fear of spiders (arachnophobia) or fear of going out (agoraphobia). “Central to all phobias is the concept of anxiety sensitivity,” says clinical psychologist Dr. Martin Seif, associate director of the Anxiety and Phobia Treatment Center at White Plains Hospital. That’s a fancy term for three things, he says: fear of the fear symptoms, anticipatory anxiety – worrying you’ll come across whatever triggers your reaction – and spending significant energy avoiding those triggers. Here are just a few of the unexpected phobias that haunt people until they reach out for help.

Fear of fear itself

An experience, act or thing that you find totally benign can be another person’s nightmare, whether it's a fear of heights (acrophobia), fear of spiders (arachnophobia) or fear of going out (agoraphobia). “Central to all phobias is the concept of anxiety sensitivity,” says clinical psychologist Dr. Martin Seif, associate director of the Anxiety and Phobia Treatment Center at White Plains Hospital. That’s a fancy term for three things, he says: fear of the fear symptoms, anticipatory anxiety – worrying you’ll come across whatever triggers your reaction – and spending significant energy avoiding those triggers. Here are just a few of the unexpected phobias that haunt people until they reach out for help.
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