Entomophobia is having an excessive or persistent fear of insects, whether the insects are harmful or not. This includes fear of spiders, bugs, mites, cockroaches or other small creatures that creep and crawl. They experience extreme anxiety at the mere sight of an insect. Sufferers usually find themselves cleaning rooms, floors, doors, and windows. Causes may be linked from past traumatic events during childhood. Being stung by a bee may be a trigger to the fear or knowing someone to be allergic to bees. Individuals may also get this fear of insects from parents who are afraid of insects.
Another reason for this phobia is the fear that these insects are carriers of disease such as the ‘kissing disease’ or chiggers caused by the bite of a bug or malaria and other hemorrhagic fevers such as Ebola which is caused by a bite of a mosquito. One might have been bitten by an insect before and experienced pain thus they fear bugs.
Symptoms of Entomophobia include feeling of terror, panic, anxiety, increased heart rate, tremors, and shortness of breath.
Systematic desensitization is one of the most common treatments for this type of phobia. The goal is to reduce or eliminate the phobia to help the patient cope with the fear. Relaxation technique is another way wherein it will help alleviate the tension and anxiety that is in their daily life.