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Meteophobia: features and treatments

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There are many types of phobias, there is also the one associated with meteorological phenomena. These are meteorological events that may have profoundly marked a person’s life and the latter is afraid that it will happen again. The phenomenon presents high levels of anxiety with an irrational fear and the person tries to avoid those certain situations. Here are the characteristics of meteophobia :

 
  • the specific situation almost always causes immediate fear or anxiety
  • the phobic situation is avoided for 6 months or more
  • the fear or anxiety felt is out of proportion to the actual danger 
  • impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning

The actual cause has not yet been determined, but it is thought that meteophobia may develop from the association of weather conditions and fear or panic. The phenomenon is seen in a person who is too afraid of weather conditions, who avoids situations to confront the object of the phobia. Another symptom is anxiety during the manifestation of a weather phenomenon.

Physical warning signs are a rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, chest pain, dizziness, nausea, chills, hot flashes, and tremors. Cognitive symptoms are belief of inability to bear the feared situation, intrusive thoughts, negative beliefs. Here are the types of weather phobias :

  • anemophobia: fear of wind or drafts
  • acluphobia: horror of the dark
  • auroraphobia: fear of auroras
  • brontophobia: fear of thunder
  • ceraunophobia: aversion to thunder and lightning
  • eosophobia: fear of dawn
  • photophobia: horror and fear of light
  • still weather phobias
  • heliophobia: fear of the sun
  • hydrophobia: aversion to water
  • homichlophobia: fear of fog
  • hygrophobia: fear of humidity
  • keraunophobia: fear of thunder and lightning
  • lilapsophobia: fear of tornadoes and hurricanes
  • meteorophobia: fear of meteorites
  • mysophobia: fear of contamination with dirt and germs
  • nephophobia: fear of clouds
  • noctiphobia: fear of the night
  • ombrophobia: fear of rain
  • ouranophobia: fear of heaven
  • psychophobia: fear of cold
  • kyonophobia: fear of snow
  • thermophobia: intense fear of heat
  • selenophobia: fear of the moon
  • nebulaphobia or homiclophobia: irrational fear of fog

The person with meteophobia must try to react to his phobias and it is useful to talk about it with a mental health professional. Cognitive behavioral therapy and exposure therapy are very good. The latter focuses on changing the person’s reaction to the phobia. Gradual and repeated exposure to the phobia can help the person control the anxiety. Then there is the in vivo exposure with a direct contact towards the anxious or unpleasant stimulus. A way to keep in touch with the dreaded stimulus and see if the anxiety is reduced. 

 

Cognitive behavioral therapy is the combination with other techniques to deal differently with the phobia. Sometimes medications can help reduce a person’s anxiety and panic . Here are also some steps that weather phobia sufferers can try to do on their own:

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  • do not avoid situations that cause fear, but try to react and lean on the closeness of a loved one
  • practicing the techniques learned in therapy and working with the therapist if it gets worse
  • seek support in self-help groups
  • take care of mental and physical health. Rest well, eat healthy and try to be physically active on a daily basis
 
  • Weather phobias: what are they and how to treat them? (lamenteemeravigliosa.it)

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