Phobias are diagnosed as an irrational fear to a situation, activity, or object/animal/person. A phobia is a feeling of extreme fear, even though the stimuli to cause the fear is not rational or a real danger/threat. People with phobias continuously avoid the specific stimulus/situation that causes the fear, and even though some may realize that the fear is irrational, they shall still try to avoid it at all costs. There are three main types of phobias, social phobia (fear of being in social places or doing an activity which requires social interaction), agoraphobia (fear of being outside of one’s home), or specific phobias (fear of, for example, dogs, cats, trains, boats, etc.)
There is no universal cause for phobias, however, recent research has come to a few conclusions. Some say that phobias can be caused by a specific situation that has caused an ongoing fear. Other researchers say that phobias can run through families and can be influenced by others around you and your culture. For example, close family members, who have phobias, are three times more likely to pass down a phobia than a family that does not have phobias.
Another theory, which is simi...
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...n for today’s research. Plutarch and others sought out religion to explain phobias, whilst scientists looked to genes. Scientists noticed the chance of inheriting phobias and how some phobias are a genetic mutation. Family members can created phobias and pass them on and even twins who are raised separately have a high chance of developing the same phobia. Scientists also went to traumatic experiences for answers. There they found that humans and animals can be taught fear, despite the flawed theory.
Current research discovered that children, adults, and monkeys have an innate fear or dangerous objects, especially snakes and spiders. This is a result of our ancestors’ fears and how natural selection has passed them down to us today. This research is still ongoing, however, it is the most logical and hopeful to find the answers and cures.
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