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Overview

Fear - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

Fear is a feeling which is created by perceived threat or danger that happens in certain organisms. Fear can cause a change in organ functions and metabolism which can ultimately lead to a behavioral changes, like fleeing, freezing or hiding from the perceive threat.

Fear in human beings can happen because of a specific stimulus that is occurring in the present or even from an expectation of a future threat perceived on the person’s life or body. Response to fear from the perception of danger leads to confrontation or escape by avoiding the threat which is also known as fight-or-flight response. Fear in extreme cases can also lead to paralysis. In animals and human beings, fear is a resultant factor that occurs due to the process of cognition and learning. Thus fear can be classified into two types. The first one is a logical fear and the later illogical fear. Illogical fear is also known as phobia.

Psychologists have suggested that fear in one of the few innate emotions found in all human beings. Other innate emotions found in human are anger, anxiety, angst, joy, horror, panic, and sadness. However, there is a difference between fear and anxiety. Although both these emotions are closely related to each other, anxiety often happens as a threat which is perceived to be unavoidable or uncontrollable. The amygdala is the place in our brain, which is associated with fear. The amygdala is located behind our pituitary gland. Amygdala generates the secretion of hormones that influences aggression and fear. Once the stimulation of fear and aggression is generated, amygdala elicit the release of the hormones, which put the person into a state of alertness, which makes the person run, move, take a flight and others.

The fight-or-flight response in human is regulated by our hypothalamus which is a part of our limbic system.

It is interesting to learn over here that once the person returns to the safe mode, and there are no signs of potential threat around, the amygdala sends the information which created fear to the mPFC (medial prefrontal cortex), which stores the data for similar future situation. This process of learning by the brain is also known as memory consolidation. Some of the hormones and chemical elements that are secreted because of fear are epinephrine, norepinephrine, cortisol and calcium.

These hormones and chemicals are responsible for regulating the heart rate, blood flow, dilation of the blood vessels and air passages and others.

Treatable by medical professional Usually self diagnosable Lab test not required Short-term: resolves within days to weeks
Symptoms
Muscular tension on the skin leading to goose-bumps. Fight-or-flight response. Acceleration in breathing and heart rate. Sweating and blushing. Sleep disturbances.

Popular Health Tips

Anxiety Disorders, Phobias and Their Management

Dr. Anuneet Sabharwal 88% (138 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Delhi
Anxiety Disorders, Phobias and Their Management
Anxiety is one of those things that almost every individual faces at some point of time in his/her life. You can be anxious about many things. Sometimes, however, these can lead to a more complex set of problems called phobias; where a person develops anxiety towards a seemingly benign object/situation. For example, a person would be uncomfortable in water, and develop a phobia of swimming, or a person can be allergic to insects and get a phobia/fear of insects. Anxiety can lead to an emotional pain - a pain where there are no physical attributes. Having an anxiety disorder can hamper a person from performing his/her regular activities. Let us have an in-depth look into anxiety disorders, and their possible management. Understanding Anxiety: Sometimes, there may be no underlying cause of anxiety. Sometimes, the environment or the incidents a person experiences in his lifetime, can precipitate anxiety disorders. There are several symptoms of anxiety, and some of them can include mood swings, confusion, decreased self-esteem, fatigue, weakness, and general fear of one's surroundings, lack of concentration, and a general feeling of helplessness. The person's sleep pattern gets disturbed, and as a result, insomnia sets in. He/she might be unable to perform the activities that they were able to earlier. Anxiety sometimes causes the blood pressure to shoot up, and can result in heart-related complications. In severe cases, anxiety can lead to depression and complete helplessness, and this can result in suicidal tendencies. Anxiety is one of the most common mental health problems that individuals face today. Our changing lifestyle too has contributed a great deal towards it. Modern day urban living is highly stressed with long working hours, unhealthy diet, and frequent smoking and drinking, all of which can trigger anxiety disorders. Treatment: Anxiety management is not a single step process, and it involves layers of planning. The primary part of the treatment involves the evaluation of the patient first. The underlying cause of the anxiety has to be addressed first and evaluated. The trauma related to that particular cause has to be analyzed, and only then can the physical treatment start. The psychiatrist can help only if the person who is suffering is more open to treatment. Medication certainly works, and anti-depressants, as advised by the physician, should be initiated. Sometimes, a change of job or the environment can help a great deal in minimizing anxiety levels. Friends and family members should also pitch in, offering the support the individual needs.
5619 people found this helpful

Causes And Symptoms Of Androphobia!

Dr. Vikas Deshmukh 87% (36 ratings)
MBBS, M.D Psychiatry , Diploma in Psychological Medicine
Sexologist, Navi Mumbai
Causes And Symptoms Of Androphobia!
Androphobia can be described as the unfounded and often overstressed fear of men. This phobia can affect both the genders, though younger females are more known to suffer from this kind of phobia. Causes and origin: Many psychoanalysts are of the opinion that women who had been victims of sexual assault or any kind of male aggression are more prone to androphobia. An unsympathetic and rude father figure can trigger this phobia in both the sexes. Many young girls are taught by their parents or caregiver to stay away from the opposite sex this can also instil a sense of fear for men in the young mind. Symptoms: Intense and irrational fear of men is one of the commonest manifestations of this phobia. In many cases, the individual might experience disturbing thoughts about being assailed by men. In spite of realizing that the fear is unfounded, they still avoid any kind of association with men. In some cases, the person is extremely panicky and alert in presence of men. Extreme cases of androphobia are characterized by panic accompanied with tremors, increased heartbeat, dizziness, nausea, stomach ache and chest ache. Androphobia and sex life: Androphobia can gravely affect the personal life of an individual particularly his/her sex life. Androphobic women intentionally keep away from male company which definitely has a negative impact on their sex life. Even mildly androphobic women are known to feel uncomfortable while talking to men. The androphobics are generally depressed individuals who prefer to keep to themselves. In spite of having feelings for a man or having the urge to have sex, an androphobic woman will hardly be able to convey her feeling because of her intense fear of manliness. The loneliness and alienation which is associated with this kind of phobia often prompts a woman to contemplate suicide. Treatment: As with most other phobias, androphobia is also a curable condition. Your psychiatrist can suggest various medications and psychotherapies to cure your condition. The exposure therapy in which the phobic is slowly exposed to the much feared subject is known to work well in many cases. The CBT or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is another treatment for androphobia where counselling sessions are conducted so that the phobic can express and share her nature of phobia. During the sessions, the counsellor suggests ways of dealing with the phobia and keeping it under control. The objective of the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is to recognize the pessimistic images related to men and turn them into positive ones. When none of these therapies work, the psychiatrist usually suggests anti-anxiety and anti depressant medications which improve the temperament of the androphobic.
6026 people found this helpful

Fear And Phobias - Hypnotherapy Treatment For It!

Dr. Pooja Anand Sharma 90% (40 ratings)
MS - Counselling and Psychotherapy, MA - Psychology, aster of Science - Counseling, Psychotherapy, Phd - Counselling, Psychotherapy
Psychologist, Delhi
Fear And Phobias -  Hypnotherapy Treatment For It!
Jumping at the sight of a cockroach is normal but some people won't even step into the room if they see one. Such people are said to suffer from a phobia of cockroaches. A phobia can be defined as the irrational fear of an object or situation though it may not pose any real danger. A phobia often develops during childhood and gets aggravated as the person gets older. Hypnotherapy has proven to be an effective form of treatment for phobias and fear. Hypnosis identifies the root cause or event that is the underlying cause of the phobia. A hypnotherapist then attempts to change the person's reaction to the phobia trigger. Some common phobias hypnotherapists deal with are: - Fear of heights - Claustrophobia - Fear of insects and small animals - Fear of flying - Fear of technology To do this a hypnotherapist must first bring the person into a state of calmness and relaxation. This is because the root cause of a phobia is often a repressed memory. Thus, it can be accessed only when a person is in a state of heightened relaxation or trance. In this state, the mind is very receptive to suggestions. Once the memory has been addressed, it can be brought back to the conscious awareness. Addressing this conscious memory then allows the therapist to make the patient feel less threatened by this trigger. The patient can then begin to form new thoughts and responses to the object or situation. This process is also known as hypnotic regression. A person normally needs 3-4 sessions of hypnotherapy to be rid of a phobia. However, the number of sessions required varies from person to person and it may take additional sessions to cure a chronic phobia. This depends on a number of factors such as: - How long the person has had the said phobia - His personality - How severely his life is affected by the phobia - How determined he is to free himself of the phobia When you decide to work with a hypnotherapist to get rid of your phobias, it is essential that you make the right choice in terms of the hypnotherapist. You should ensure that you are being treated by a licensed professional hypnotherapist. Also, make sure that you can trust the person and are comfortable in his or her presence. Take your time finding someone who you can open yourself up to and get started on conquering your fears.
3 people found this helpful

Curing Phobia, Fear And Anxiety With Hypnotherapy!

Ms. M Sri Vidhya Venkatesan 92% (409 ratings)
MS - Counselling and Psychotherapy, Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology, Bachelor of Arts - Psychology and English Literature
Psychologist, Coimbatore
Curing Phobia, Fear And Anxiety With Hypnotherapy!
Jumping at the sight of a cockroach is normal, but some people won't even step into the room if they see one. Such people are said to suffer from a phobia of cockroaches. A phobia can be defined as the irrational fear of an object or situation, though it may not pose any real danger. A phobia often develops during childhood and gets aggravated as the person gets older. Hypnotherapy has proven to be an effective form of treatment for phobias and fear. Hypnosis identifies the root cause or event that is the underlying cause of the phobia. A Hypnotherapist then attempts to change the person's reaction to the phobia trigger. Some common phobias Hypnotherapists deal with are: Fear of heights Claustrophobia Fear of insects and small animals Fear of flying Fear of technology To do this a Hypnotherapist must ensure that the mind of the person is in a calm and relax state. This is because the root cause of a phobia is often a repressed memory. Thus, it can be accessed only when a person is in a state of heightened relaxation or trance. In this state, the mind is very receptive to suggestions. Once the memory has been addressed, it can be brought back to the conscious awareness. Addressing this conscious memory allows the therapist to make the patient feel less threatened by this trigger. The patient can then begin to form new thoughts and responses to the object or situation. This process is also known as Hypnotic regression. A person normally needs 3-4 sessions of Hypnotherapy to be rid of a phobia. However, the number of sessions required varies from person to person and it may take additional sessions to cure a chronic phobia. No. of sessions required depends on a number of factors such as: How long the person has had the said phobia His personality How severely his life is affected by the phobia How determined he is to free himself of the phobia When you decide to work with a Hypnotherapist to get rid of your phobias, it is essential that you make the right choice in terms of the Hypnotherapist. You should ensure that you are being treated by a licensed professional Hypnotherapist. Also, make sure that you can trust the person and are comfortable in his or her presence. Take your time finding someone who you can open yourself up to and get started on conquering your fears.
2865 people found this helpful

Androphobia - How It Affects Your Sex Life?

Dr. Singh 92% (1652 ratings)
BHMS
Sexologist, Noida
Androphobia - How It Affects Your Sex Life?
Androphobia can be described as the unfounded and often overstressed fear of men. This phobia can affect both the genders, though younger females are more known to suffer from this kind of phobia. Causes and origin: Many psychoanalysts are of the opinion that women who had been victims of sexual assault or any kind of male aggression are more prone to androphobia. An unsympathetic and rude father figure can trigger this phobia in both the sexes. Many young girls are taught by their parents or caregiver to stay away from the opposite sex this can also instil a sense of fear for men in the young mind. Symptoms: Intense and irrational fear of men is one of the commonest manifestations of this phobia. In many cases, the individual might experience disturbing thoughts about being assailed by men. In spite of realizing that the fear is unfounded, they still avoid any kind of association with men. In some cases, the person is extremely panicky and alert in presence of men. Extreme cases of androphobia are characterized by panic accompanied with tremors, increased heartbeat, dizziness, nausea, stomach ache and chest ache. Androphobia and sex life: Androphobia can gravely affect the personal life of an individual particularly his/her sex life. Androphobic women intentionally keep away from male company which definitely has a negative impact on their sex life. Even mildly androphobic women are known to feel uncomfortable while talking to men. The androphobics are generally depressed individuals who prefer to keep to themselves. In spite of having feelings for a man or having the urge to have sex, an androphobic woman will hardly be able to convey her feeling because of her intense fear of manliness. The loneliness and alienation which is associated with this kind of phobia often prompts a woman to contemplate suicide. Treatment: As with most other phobias, androphobia is also a curable condition. Your psychiatrist can suggest various medications and psychotherapies to cure your condition. The exposure therapy in which the phobic is slowly exposed to the much feared subject is known to work well in many cases. The CBT or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is another treatment for androphobia where counselling sessions are conducted so that the phobic can express and share her nature of phobia. During the sessions, the counsellor suggests ways of dealing with the phobia and keeping it under control. The objective of the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is to recognize the pessimistic images related to men and turn them into positive ones. When none of these therapies work, the psychiatrist usually suggests anti-anxiety and anti depressant medications which improve the temperament of the androphobic.
6306 people found this helpful

Popular Questions & Answers

Does Anxiety or Phobia leads to High BP and High pulse rate. How we can control phobia. Is there any medicine to deal Phobia like situation. Please suggest.

Dr. Ambadi Kumar 88% (686 ratings)
MD, Fellowship in Intergrative Medicine, MBBS
Integrated Medicine Specialist, Kochi
Yes anxiety can lead to high bp and high puse rate You have to treat the root cause and not the symptoms you have not mentioned what do you do for living and what is the stress is it at work or at home what is the phobia you have. All these are reversible with lifestyle changes like meditation, yoga,exercising daily ,prayer, showing gratitude and eating healthy food .No junk or processed foods for more specific advice take a consult.
1 person found this helpful

I am suddenly get afraid by dark and ghost and lose my intelligence and logical and understanding skills I get no pleasure from seeing my favourite serial and studies I lose interest in one of my favourite games. I wanna know if I have depression or not or something else please tell me.

Dr. K V Anand 95% (20571 ratings)
BASM, MD, MS (Counseling & Psychotherapy), MSc - Psychology, Certificate in Clinical psychology of children and Young People, Certificate in Psychological First Aid, Certificate in Positive Psychology
Psychologist, Palakkad
Dear user, Anxiety disorders are a category of mental disorders characterized by feelings of anxiety and fear, where anxiety is a worry about future events and fear is a reaction to current events. These feelings may cause physical symptoms, such as a racing heart and shakiness. There are a number of anxiety disorders: including generalized anxiety disorder, a specific phobia, social anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, and panic disorder among others. While each has its own characteristics and symptoms, they all include symptoms of anxiety. Anxiety medicines alone cannot cure anxiety disorders mainly because medicines do not alter behavior. Behavior change and Continuous practice of the changed behavior cure anxiety. I suggest anxiety education, progressive counseling and progressive psychotherapy. I assure you complete cure. I need to know more about your anxiety so that I will be able to diagnose it properly and provide you tips to overcome and manage your anxiety. Take care.
1 person found this helpful

As Diwali is approaching, I am completely aware that I will be the most tensed person on this planet, because I am scared of Noise generated by Firecrackers. Is there any solution that I can overcome my fear. (I have this fear from childhood and now I am 28 Years of age)

Dr. Jyoti Monga 89% (316 ratings)
Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Ayurveda, Delhi
Dear Mr. lybrate-user Your problem is only psychological, there is nothing to worry about it. Don't think too much or make pre-assumptions. You will be fine. Don't be tensed.
1 person found this helpful

I am suffering from agoraphobia what should I do. I am very scared thinking about pani attacks which I feel many times on the roads and in a college also.

Dr. Jayvirsinh Chauhan 97% (4004 ratings)
MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
Hi Saood.. the best and permanent treatment of it is in homeopathy.. You may consult for the treatment as it may need to be taken at least for 6-8 months...

Why do I feel fearful sometimes without any reason and what I should do at that time to come over. Sudden feeling of fearful ness without any reason.

Dr. K V Anand 95% (20571 ratings)
BASM, MD, MS (Counseling & Psychotherapy), MSc - Psychology, Certificate in Clinical psychology of children and Young People, Certificate in Psychological First Aid, Certificate in Positive Psychology
Psychologist, Palakkad
Dear user, Anxiety disorders are a category of mental disorders characterized by feelings of anxiety and fear, where anxiety is a worry about future events and fear is a reaction to current events. These feelings may cause physical symptoms, such as a racing heart and shakiness. There are a number of anxiety disorders: including generalized anxiety disorder, a specific phobia, social anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, and panic disorder among others. While each has its own characteristics and symptoms, they all include symptoms of anxiety. Anxiety medicines alone cannot cure anxiety disorders mainly because medicines do not alter behavior. Behavior change and Continuous practice of the changed behavior cure anxiety. I suggest anxiety education, progressive counseling and progressive psychotherapy. I assure you complete cure. I need to know more about your anxiety so that I will be able to diagnose it properly and provide you tips to overcome and manage your anxiety. Take care.
3 people found this helpful

Health Quizzes

Fear - Don't Let It Control Your Life

Dr. Udayan Bhaumik 88% (221 ratings)
MBBS, Diploma in Psychological Medicine
Psychiatrist, Kolkata
Workaholism, a good diet and unshaken beliefs will stop fear from ruling your life. True or false? Take this quiz to know now.
Start Quiz

Coming face to face with the most common phobias

Dr. Vikas Deshmukh 87% (36 ratings)
MBBS, M.D Psychiatry , Diploma in Psychological Medicine
Sexologist, Navi Mumbai
Phobias are just overrated fears. True or False? Take this quiz to find that out.
Start Quiz
Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice