What is phobia
Phobia, originally known as phobia neurosis, refers to the unusual fear and nervousness of the patient when dealing with certain external situations, objects, or people, which can cause blushing, shortness of breath, sweating, heart palpitations, changes in blood pressure, Symptoms such as nausea, weakness, and even fainting, leading to avoidance reactions. The patient knows that this kind of fear response is excessive or unreasonable, but it still recurs and is difficult to control, so he tries his best to avoid objective things or situations that cause fear, or tolerate it with fear, thus affecting their normal activities.
Classification of phobias
According to the object of fear, phobias are roughly divided into three categories: agoraphobia, social phobia, and specific phobia.
The cause of the phobia is currently unclear. Studies have shown that it may be related to genetic factors, quality factors, physiological factors, psychological-social factors, etc.
1. Genetic factors Agoraphobia has a family genetic tendency, especially affecting female relatives. Studies have shown that identical twins have a higher prevalence of fear cohort than fraternal twins. Certain specific phobias have obvious genetic predispositions, such as fear of blood and injections.
2. Quality factors Predecessors believed that the patient’s personality before illness was mostly timid, shy, passive, dependent, highly introverted, prone to anxiety, fear, and compulsive tendencies. If you have received too much protection from your mother since you were a child, you are also prone to phobias after you become an adult.
3. Physiological factors Some people have found that the nervous system of patients with phobias has an increased level of awakening. Such people are very sensitive, alert and in a state of excessive awakening. Sympathetic nerve excitement is dominant in the body, and the secretion of adrenaline and thyroxine increases. However, the causal relationship between this physiological state and the phobia is still difficult to distinguish.
4. Patients with psychosocial factors may have some kind of mental stimulating factors before the first onset. Data shows that nearly two-thirds of patients actively trace back to a certain event related to their onset. At the beginning of the 19th century, American psychologists used conditioned reflex theory to explain the mechanism of phobias. They believed that the expansion and persistence of fear symptoms was due to the recurrence of symptoms that conditioned anxiety, while avoidance behavior hindered the disappearance of conditioning. That is, when the patient encounters a certain fearful stimulus, other stimuli (irrelevant stimuli) that are not fearful in the situation may also act on the patient’s cerebral cortex at the same time. The two serve as a mixed stimulus to form a conditioned reflex, so this kind of stimulus will be encountered again in the future. Situations, even if there are only irrelevant stimuli, can also cause intense fear. However, some patients have no experience of being intimidated, and the objects of fear of some patients often change. These are difficult to explain by the conditioned reflex theory.
There are hundreds of objects feared by phobias.
Also known as place phobia, wilderness phobia, pyloric phobia, etc. It is the most common kind of phobia, accounting for about 60%. Most of the onset is around 25 years old, and around 35 years old is another peak incidence, with more women than men. Mainly manifested as fear of certain specific environments, such as squares, closed environments and crowded public places. The patient is afraid of leaving home or being alone, afraid to enter shops, theaters, stations or taking public transportation, because the patient is worried about fear in these places, unable to get help, unable to escape, so avoid these environments, or even dare not go out at all, and anxious And the degree of avoidance behavior can be very different. Panic attacks are often accompanied by symptoms such as depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, social anxiety, and depersonalization. If not effectively treated, the symptoms may fluctuate, but they generally become chronic.
Also known as social anxiety disorder, SAD. It usually occurs between the ages of 17 and 30. The incidence is almost the same for men and women. There is often no obvious cause of sudden onset. The central symptom revolves around fear of being scrutinized in a small group. Once you find that others pay attention to yourself Unnatural, afraid to look up, afraid to look at others, and even feel ashamed, afraid to speak in public, afraid to sit in front of assemblies, avoid social interactions, and in extreme cases can lead to social isolation. Common fear objects are the opposite sex, strict bosses, the parents of the fiancé (fiancée), etc., or acquaintances. It may be accompanied by low self-evaluation and fear of criticism, and may have symptoms such as blushing, trembling hands, nausea or urgency, and symptoms may develop to the extent of a panic attack. Clinical manifestations can be isolated and limited to eating in public, speaking in public, or encountering the opposite sex, and can also be generalized to all situations involving outside the family. Some patients are often accompanied by prominent agoraphobia and depression; some patients may use substance abuse to relieve anxiety and eventually lead to substance dependence, especially alcohol dependence.
The patient’s fears are limited to specific situations, such as fear of approaching specific animals, fear of high places, thunder, darkness, flying, enclosed spaces, urinating in the toilet, eating certain things, dental treatment, witnessing bleeding or trauma, fear of contacting specific animals Diseases, specific situations that trigger panic. Specific fears generally appear in childhood or early adulthood, and can last for decades if left untreated. The fear of the fear situation generally does not fluctuate, and the degree of functional impairment depends on the difficulty of the patient to avoid the fear situation. Sexually transmitted diseases, especially AIDS, are common targets of disease fear. The blood-traumatic fear is different from other fears. It causes a slow heartbeat, sometimes fainting, instead of a fast heartbeat.