Saturday, June 16, 2007

The Most Common Phobias

I have a friend who has a vomit phobia. Recently, a link was posted on the bayblab to the International Emetophobia Society a group that claims that emetophobia (the fear of vomit and vomiting) is the 5th most common phobia, which seems strangely high. So I did some poking around on the web for a list of the most common phobias. I couldn't find a definitive list, or numbers to back up any of the claims, but after a perusal of several 'unofficial' lists I pieced together the following rankings. A few seemingly common phobias such as achluophobia (fear of the dark) and mysophobia (germophobe) make occasional appearances on these lists, but not as frequently. While this is a rough order, all of these are almost unanimously listed:

  1. Arachnophobia (spiders, a clear #1)
  2. Social Phobia (this would include public speaking)
  3. Aerophobia (flying)
  4. Agoraphobia (open spaces)
  5. Claustrophobia (closed spaces)
  6. Acrophobia (heights)
  7. Emetophobia (vomit)
  8. Carcinophobia (cancer)
  9. Brontophobia (thunderstorms)
  10. Necrophobia (Death/dead things, a unanimous #10)

The top 5 or 6 are what might be expected, but I'm still surprised that vomiting (and thunderstorms for that matter) rank so highly. If you have your own phobia, and want to know what it's called, you can try checking this site. They'll tell you that the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth is called arachibutyrophobia


Anonymous said...

I'm an emetophobe and I can tell you 100% why its ranked so highly. It COMSUMES your life.. you have no idea how often people say they feel like they're going to be sick or are sick. I CANNOT see it for the life of me or my body freaks out, shaking, crying.. its overwhelming..

Anonymous said...

I agree. I'm also an emetophobe, and you'd be surprised that there's a lot more of us out there than you'd expect. I mean, hey, no one likes vomit (no one normal...) so wouldn't it figure that more people'd be likely to have a phobia of it?

Ed said...

All of us has its own weaknesses and fears. Honestly, there are times that I felt goosebumps on dental surgeries. Luckily, my Tucson (AZ) dentist is good in handling patients. So, even though I felt goosebumps when one of my teeth needed to be pull out, he helped me to be calm.

vomit phobia said...

I have had emetophobia for almost 20 years. Although I have had successful treatment recently, I did not seek treatment for many years. I believed like most emetophobes that I was the only 1 with this phobia.

If more emetophobia sufferers admitted their phobia, which most do not, then this phobia would be higher than 7th on the list.