Phobias and anxiety disorders are extremely common these days – so common that almost every person has an object, an animal or a situation that he or she is absolutely terrified of. Simply put, phobias are described as unrealistic and very intense fears – the fear can be so strong that in some cases, the phobia sufferer goes to extreme lengths just to avoid the object of their dread. Although other people may consider somebody’s phobia as irrational and far from being as serious or dangerous as the person who suffers from it sees it, these phobias can have a tremendous impact on the social, personal and professional life of the sufferer. Here are some of the most common hidden phobias and how they can slowly take their toll on your life:
1. Social Phobia Or Social Anxiety
Also known as social anxiety, the social phobia is by far one of the most common ones, and it affects millions of people worldwide. Just as the name implies, social phobic people are very anxious when they are in front of other people, regardless if they have to prepare a speech or to just interact with people on a daily basis. There are many triggers that can lead to social phobia, from bullying to stress, and the fear of going out in public can be so severe sometimes that the one who suffers from social anxiety disorder may end up skipping work or school, or avoiding basic social situations. It is not uncommon for those who suffer from social phobia to blush, sweat or feel shaky, to get palpitations or even to experience intense negative feelings (nervousness or sadness) right before or during a particular social event. Nonetheless, it must be said that social phobia can be managed with the help of a professional therapist.
2. Panic Attacks
Panic attacks do represent a deep, hidden type of phobia, and they are characterized by short period of intense fear that is often accompanied by a series of physical symptoms, such as the fear of imminent death, shortness of breath, dizziness or heart palpitations. Also referred to as anxiety attacks, the panic attacks can last anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours, and although they are not dangerous from a medical standpoint, they can inflict a great amount of stress, especially since most panic attack sufferers are not unaware of the fact that they are experiencing an anxiety attack, and they often tend to mistake it for a heart attack or a more serious medical condition. If the panic attacks occur on a regular basis, then this is already considered to be a symptom of panic disorder, which can also impact your life on all levels unless you manage it correctly.