We all experience or know someone who experiences a profound fear, such as a fear of spiders, snakes or heights. This is because holding fears towards certain objects or situations is extremely common. However, in some cases, the fear reaction is so severe, and the feared stimulus is commonly encountered that the fear becomes a major burden, which interferes with our ability to function day-to-day.
A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder that may present as persistent fear and irrational avoidance of an object or situation. Common phobias include claustrophobia, blood or injection phobias, animal and insect phobias, height phobias, flying phobias, storm phobias, fear of death; choking and vomiting phobias, dental phobia and fear of disease. It is important to seek help if a phobia is disrupting your everyday life, or causing significant distress.
So how do you know when your worries or fears have crossed the line and are starting to affect your quality of life? There are a number of indicators which could suggest that you are experiencing a phobia, including: