How do people get phobias? (Thinkstock)
How do people get phobias?
Lexile

Assign to Google Classroom

You asked us a question. "How do people get phobias?"
 
Roughly 10% of people will get a phobia.
 
They might be scared of spiders. Or maybe flying or clowns. Whatever it is they are afraid of that fear is not a normal one.
 
A phobia is response to what someone thinks is a danger. It does not really make sense. It is normally over-the-top. It is a response that causes people to avoid their object-of-fear like the plague.
 
There are three main types.
 
Simple phobias are a fear of something specific. Those fears might be dentists or dogs. This kind tends to form in childhood. It will often go away over time.
 
Then there are two more types of phobias. These are more deeply rooted. And they can be disabling. 

They are "complex phobias." They tend to start during the teen years or early adulthood. 

The first is social phobia. It is a fear of being judged or embarrassed.

The second is agoraphobia. It is a fear of places that make you feel trapped.
 
It is likely that genetics have a hand in phobias.
 
These unwarranted fears tend to run in families. There is evidence that they can be inherited biologically, at least in mice.
 
But life experiences play a role, too.
 
Phobias can form from a scary or stressful experience. It can even happen after one you just witnessed or heard about.
 
Unfortunately, knowing what caused your phobia does not cure you of it.
 
What might help though is exposure therapy. Patients slowly increase contact with their phobia. The hope is that they will learn to overcome their fear.

Filed Under:  
Assigned 275 times
CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why might phobias tend to run in families?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (151)
  • aderholdm-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:26 a.m.

    Well they may inheret their phobias them from their parents.

    • GW-tar
      5/18/2017 - 10:27 a.m.

      Not just their parents, it can be their grandparents, too

      • Anabelle T-tar
        5/19/2017 - 09:36 a.m.

        Kids might see their parents scared of something, and then the kids think it's dangerous, and that's how they get a phobia.

        • ChaseM-tar
          5/22/2017 - 11:43 a.m.

          It seems that is how most people get phobias I know that if someone who is just like a friend experience's something they might tell their friends and then they get phobias it just might depend on what kind of person you are.

        • BransenP-tar
          5/23/2017 - 03:20 p.m.

          I completely agree we believe what are parents believe.

  • dukeo-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:29 a.m.

    Why does spiders try to bite people are they like scared or something so they have to defend them self's ?

    • jamesj1-rob
      10/29/2015 - 10:34 a.m.

      defend

    • GW-tar
      5/18/2017 - 10:27 a.m.

      that is exactly why

  • clayr-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:29 a.m.

    Phobias might tend to run in families because they may get scared of something that another person told them then it might run to anther family member.

  • arellanojo-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:29 a.m.

    phobias might tend to run in families because maybe one family member is scared of one thing so they tell another family member then it keeps on going around.

  • garcianavaw-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:32 a.m.

    Phobias can be runed in the family because something can be scary to them like flying or clowns .This can also be pass on because i can be picked on by someone els.

  • davisn-rob
    10/29/2015 - 10:42 a.m.

    Phobias may run in families because parents could pass down there fears to there children by telling stories

  • cardinalej-rob
    10/29/2015 - 02:22 p.m.

    It can be inherited biologically

Take the Quiz Leave a comment
ADVERTISEMENT