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Pyrophobia- Fear of fire

Pyrophobia (from the Greek: pur, “fire” and phobos, “fear) is an excessive and irrational fear of fires, flames, or blazes. A Phyrophobic person feels uneasy when he/she smells smoke and can’t resist checking the oven or stove from time to time.

Generally, people’s fright of fire depends on the situation when the fire appears before them. In front of a campfire or a barbeque grill in which the fire is controllable, people normally do not get afraid.

However, when the fire manages to escape and burn the bushes in your garden or the carpet in the house, you may be panic and very frightened to see the fire.

Pyrophobia may be caused by a certain traumatic experience associated with fire in the past. It is possible that the phyrophobic person may be told about the danger of fire too often, have tragic incident caused by fire, or have heard of someone’s horrible experience involving fire.

People with pyrophobic may feel dizzy, perspire, or queasy whenever they see fire no matter how small and tame the fire is. They may also show other signs and symptoms of anxiety including palpitations, nausea, breathlessness and they wish to stay as far as possible from the source of fire. They may have no social life because for example, they get scared when someone blows the candles on a birthday cake or when they see fireworks.

Treatment includes psychotherapy with desensitization. Medications may be given to those who have severe debilitating symptoms.