“A strong dislike of flying is a fear, whereas a pathological fear (an intense, uncontrollable, unendurable, physical fear) is considered to be a phobia” (Rob Kelly). Not many people know the difference between fears and phobias neither did I until I began researching for my project. Many people have fears such as a fear of mice or a fear of the dentist. For some people there fears are very minor but what happens when a fear takes over a person’s entire life and disrupts their daily activities to the point they can no longer continue on with their day, it than turns into a phobia. “The number of people who suffer from phobias is estimated at more than 6 million people in the United States” (Melissa Stoppler). In today’s society many people don’t thoroughly understand what a phobia really is and how much of an issue a phobia can really be because of this people who do suffer from phobias and aren’t aware may think that what they’re going through is normal and is just a fear.
The problem with people having this disorder is that not treating a phobia can change a person’s life drastically simply because they individual is giving the phobia more time to grow and dominate their life. It can become so drastic to the point they can push away any tasks that they are meant to complete on a daily basis and decide not to do anything that may lead to their phobia actually taking place. An example of this could be a man with a phobia of dogs; yes many people are afraid of dogs but what if the man decided to never leave his house due to the fact that there might be a slight chance of him having an encounter with a dog. Society isn’t aware of the actual impact that this disorder can cause. Fears and Phobias is a mental illness but many people aren’t aware of that.
Because of the many stigmas attached to mental illness when people here about Fears and Phobias and someone being treated for this illness they are labeled as someone who is distressed or being delirious. “Coupled with their own feelings of sadness, these individuals often do not seek help” (cmha.ca). Due to the labels that come with Fears & Phobias and the individuals own feelings of embarrassment and guilt they may decide to not get help for their situation even though there is a treatment available. A common stereotype associated with fears and phobias is the meaning of both of the words “The difference between fears and phobias is really in degree of suffering.
Though both words are often used as if their meaning is the same” (Elly Prior). Most people think that fears and phobias both mean being afraid of something which isn’t true just as Elly said it depends on how much the person is suffering from their fear if they are able to function every day or not. Society believes that fears and phobias aren’t a real concern and don’t deserve to be a mental illness. I feel as if the reason society feels that way about this is because of the individuals who suffer from it to the point it dominates their lives decide not to get help or share their story. While researching for this CPT I chose to do case studies so when I started my search there weren’t as many as I thought there would be. To me that was proof about what I’ve learned about people suffering from this disorder.
Courtney from Study Moose
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