List of Phobias

The English suffixes -phobia, -phobic, -phobe (of Greek origin: φόβος/φοβία ) occur in technical usage in psychiatry to construct words that describe irrational, disabling fear as a mental disorder (e.g., agoraphobia), in chemistry to describe chemical aversions (e.g., hydrophobic), in biology to describe organisms that dislike certain conditions (e.g., acidophobia), and in medicine to describe hypersensitivity to a stimulus, usually sensory (e.g., photophobia). In common usage they also form words that describe dislike or hatred of a particular thing or subject. The suffix is antonymic to -phil-.

The following lists include words ending in -phobia, and include fears that have acquired names. In some cases, the naming of phobias has become a word game, of notable example being a 1998 humorous article published by BBC News.

In some cases a word ending in -phobia may have an antonym with the suffix -phil-, e.g., Germanophobe / Germanophile.

 

Phobia lists

A large number of-phobia lists circulate on the Internet, with words collected from indiscriminate sources, often copying each other. Also, a number of psychiatric websites exist that at the first glance cover a huge number of phobias, but in fact use a standard text to fit any phobia and reuse it for all unusual phobias by merely changing the name. Sometimes it leads to bizarre results, such as suggestions to cure “prostitute phobia”. Such practice is known as content spamming and is used to attract search engines.

 

Psychological conditions

In many cases specialists prefer to avoid the suffix -phobia and use more descriptive terms, see, e.g., personality disorders, anxiety disorders, avoidant personality disorder, love-shyness.

  • Ablutophobia – fear of bathing, washing, or cleaning.
  • Acrophobia, Altophobia – fear of heights.
  • Agoraphobia, Agoraphobia Without History of Panic Disorderfear of places or events where escape is impossible or when help is unavailable.
  • Acousticophobia – fear of sound and voice.
  • Agraphobia – fear of sexual abuse.
  • Aichmophobia – fear of sharp or pointed objects (such as a needle or knife).
  • Agyrophobia – fear of crossing roads.
  • Androphobia – fear of men.
  • Anthropophobia – fear of people or being in a company, a form of social phobia.
  • Anthophobia – fear of flowers.
  • Aquaphobia – fear of water. Distinct from Hydrophobia, a scientific property that makes chemicals averse to interaction with water, as well as an archaic name for rabies.
  • Arachnophobia – fear of spiders.
  • Astraphobia- fear of thunder and lightning.
  • Atychiphobia – fear of failure
  • Autophobia – fear of loneliness
  • Aviophobia, Aviatophobia – fear of flying.
  • Blood-injection-injury type phobia – a DSM-IV subtype of specific phobias.
  • Chiroptophobia – fear of bats.
  • Cibophobia, Sitophobia – aversion to food, synonymous to Anorexia nervosa.
  • Claustrophobiafear of having no escape and being closed in.
  • Coulrophobia – fear of clowns (not restricted to evil clowns).
  • Decidophobia – fear of making decisions.
  • Odontophobia, Dentophobia, Odontophobia – fear of dentists and dental procedures
  • Disposophobia, better known as “compulsive hoarding” – the fear of getting rid of or losing things.
  • Dysmorphophobia, or body dysmorphic disorder – a phobic obsession with a real or imaginary body defect.
  • Emetophobia – fear of vomiting.
  • Ergasiophobia, Ergophobia – fear of work or functioning, or a surgeon’s fear of operating.
  • Ergophobia – fear of work or functioning.
  • Erotophobia – fear of sexual love or sexual questions.
  • Erythrophobia – pathological blushing.
  • Friggatriskaidekaphobia – fear of Friday the 13th.
  • Gelotophobia – fear of being laughed at.
  • Gephyrophobia – fear of bridges.
  • Genophobia, Coitophobia – fear of sexual intercourse.
  • Gerascophobia – fear of growing old or aging.
  • Gerontophobia – fear of growing old, or a hatred or fear of the elderly
  • Glossophobia – fear of speaking in public or of trying to speak.
  • Gymnophobia – fear of nudity.
  • Gynophobia – fear of women.
  • Halitophobia – fear of bad breath.
  • Haptephobia – fear of being touched.
  • Heliophobia – fear of sunlight.
  • Hemophobia, Haemophobia – fear of blood.
  • Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia – fear of the number 666.
  • Homophobiafear/hatred of homosexuals
  • Hoplophobia – fear of weapons, specifically firearms (Generally a political term but the clinical phobia is also documented).
  • Hydrophobiafear of Rabies (Hydrophobia).
  • Hylophobia – fear of trees, forests or wood.
  • Ligyrophobia – fear of loud noises.
  • Lipophobia – fear/avoidance of fats in food.
  • Medication phobia – fear of medications.
  • Mysophobia – fear of germs, contamination or dirt.
  • Necrophobiafear of death and/or the dead.
  • Neophobia, Cainophobia, Cainotophobia, Cenophobia, Centophobia, Kainolophobia, Kainophobia – fear of newness, novelty.
  • Nomophobia – fear of being out of mobile phone contact.
  • Nosophobia – fear of contracting a disease.
  • Nosocomephobia – fear of hospitals.
  • Nyctophobia, Achluophobia, Lygophobia, Scotophobia – fear of darkness.
  • Oikophobiafear of home surroundings and household appliances.
  • Osmophobia, Olfactophobia – fear of smells.
  • Paraskavedekatriaphobia, Paraskevidekatriaphobia, Friggatriskaidekaphobia – fear of Friday the 13th.
  • Panphobia – fear of everything or constant fear of an unknown cause.
  • Pediophobia – Fear of dolls
  • Phasmophobia – fear of ghosts, spectres or phantasms.
  • Phagophobia – fear of swallowing.
  • Pharmacophobia – same as medication phobia.
  • Philophobia – fear of love
  • Phobophobia – fear of having a phobia.
  • Phonophobiafear of loud sounds.
  • Porphyrophobia – fear of the color purple.
  • Pyrophobia – fear of fire.
  • Radiophobia – fear of radioactivity or X-rays.
  • Sociophobia – fear of people or social situations.
  • Scopophobia – fear of being looked at or stared at.
  • Somniphobia – fear of sleep.
  • Spectrophobia – fear of mirrors and one’s own reflections.
  • Taphophobia – fear of the grave, or fear of being placed in a grave while still alive.
  • Technophobia – fear of technology (see also Luddite).
  • Telephone phobia – fear or reluctance of making or taking phone calls.
  • Tetraphobia – fear of the number 4.
  • Thanatophobiafear of death.
  • Tokophobia – fear of childbirth.
  • Traumatophobia – a synonym for injury phobia: fear of having an injury.
  • Triskaidekaphobia, Terdekaphobia – fear of the number 13.
  • Trypanophobia, Belonephobia, Enetophobia – fear of needles or injections.
  • Workplace phobia – fear of the workplace.
  • Xenophobiafear of strangers, foreigners, or aliens.
  • Xylophobia, Hylophobia, Ylophobia – fear of trees, forests or wood.

 

Animal phobias

  • Ailurophobiafear/dislike of cats.
  • Apiphobia – fear/dislike of bees (also known as melissophobia, from the Greek melissa “bee”).
  • Arachnophobia – fear/dislike of spiders and other arachnids.
  • Bovinophobia – fear/dislike of cattle.
  • Chiroptophobia – fear/dislike of bats.
  • Cynophobia – fear/dislike of dogs.
  • Entomophobia – fear/dislike of insects.
  • Equinophobia – fear/dislike of horses (also known as hippophobia).
  • Herpetophobia – fear/dislike of reptiles and/or amphibians.
  • Ichthyophobia – fear/dislike of fish.
  • Murophobia – fear/dislike of mice and/or rats.
  • Ophidiophobiafear/dislike of snakes.
  • Ornithophobia – fear/dislike of birds.
  • Selachophobia – fear of sharks.
  • Scoleciphobia – fear of worms.
  • Zoophobia – fear of animals.

 

Non-psychological conditions

 

Biology, chemistry

Biologists use a number of -phobia/-phobic terms to describe predispositions by plants and animals against certain conditions. For antonyms, see here.

  • Acidophobia/Acidophobic – preference for non-acidic conditions.
  • Heliophobia/Heliophobic – aversion to sunlight.
  • Hydrophobia/Hydrophobic – a property of being repelled by water.
  • Lipophobicity – a property of fat rejection
  • Ombrophobia – avoidance of rain
  • Photophobia (biology) a negative phototaxis or phototropism response, or a tendency to stay out of the light
  • Superhydrophobe – the property given to materials that are extremely difficult to get wet.
  • Thermophobia – aversion to heat.

 

Prejudices and discrimination

The suffix -phobia is used to coin terms that denote a particular anti-ethnic or anti-demographic sentiment, such as Americanophobia, Europhobia, Francophobia, Hispanophobia, and Indophobia. Often a synonym with the prefix “anti-” already exists (e.g., Polonophobia vs. anti-Polonism). Anti-religious sentiments are expressed in terms such as Christianophobia and Islamophobia. Sometimes the terms themselves could even be considered racist, such as with “Negrophobia.”

Other prejudices include:

  • Biphobia – fear/dislike of bisexuality or bisexuals.
  • Christianophobia – fear/dislike of Christians
  • Ephebiphobia – fear/dislike of youth.
  • Gerontophobia, Gerascophobia – fear/dislike of aging or the elderly.
  • Heterophobia – fear/dislike of heterosexuals.
  • Homophobiafear/dislike of homosexuality or homosexuals.
  • Islamophobia – fear/dislike of Muslims
  • Judeophobia – fear/dislike of Jews.
  • Lesbophobia – fear/dislike of lesbians.
  • Pedophobia, Pediophobia – fear/dislike of children.
  • Psychophobia – fear/dislike of mental illness or the mentally ill.
  • Sinophobia – fear/dislike of Chinese.
  • Transphobia – fear/dislike of transgender or transsexual people.
  • Xenophobiafear/dislike of foreigners.
  • Germanophobia- fear/dislike of Germans.

 

Jocular and fictional phobias

  • Aibohphobia – a joke term for the fear of palindromes, which is a palindrome itself. The term is a piece of computer humor entered into the 1981 The Devil’s DP Dictionary
  • Anachrophobia – fear of temporal displacement, from a Doctor Who novel by Jonathan Morris.
  • Anatidaephobia – fear that somewhere, somehow, a duck is watching you (Derived from the word Anatidae, which is the family contain ducks, and the suffix -phobia). Comes from Gary Larson’s The Far Side.
  • Anoraknophobia – a portmanteau of “anorak” and “arachnophobia”. Used in the Wallace and Gromit comic book Anoraknophobia. Also the title of an album by Marillion.
  • Arachibutyrophobia – fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth. The word is used by Charles M. Schulz in a 1982 installment of his “Peanuts” comic strip and by Peter O’Donnell in his 1985 Modesty Blaise adventure novel Dead Man’s Handle.
  • Hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia – fear of long words. Hippopoto- “big” due to its allusion to the Greek-derived word hippopotamus (though this is derived as hippo- “horse” compounded with potam-os “river”, so originally meaning “river horse”; according to the Oxford English, “hippopotamine” has been construed as large since 1847, so this coinage is reasonable); -monstr- is from Latin words meaning “monstrous”, -o- is a noun-compounding vowel; -sesquipedali- comes from “sesquipedalian” meaning a long word (literally “a foot and a half long” in Latin), -o- is a noun-compounding vowel, and -phobia means “fear”. Note: This was mentioned on the first episode of Brainiac Series Five as one of Tickle’s Teasers.
  • Keanuphobia – fear of Keanu Reeves, portrayed in the Dean Koontz book, False Memory, where a woman has an irrational fear of Keanu Reeves and has to see her psychiatrist, Mark Ahriman, each week. He calls her the “Keanuphobe” in his head. She eventually ends up killing her psychiatrist because she believes that he is one of the Machine agents trying to control her.
  • Luposlipaphobia – fear of being pursued by timber wolves around a kitchen table while wearing socks on a newly waxed floor, also from Gary Larson’s The Far Side.
  • Nihilophobia – fear of nothingness (comes from the combination of the Latin word nihil which means nothing, none, and the suffix -phobia), as described by the Doctor in the Star Trek: Voyager episode Night. Voyager’s morale officer and chef Neelix suffers from this condition, having panic attacks while the ship was traversing a dark expanse of space known as the Void. It is also the title of a 2008 album by Neuronium. Also, the animated version of George of the Jungle (2007 TV series) is seen suffering in one episode of the cartoon, where they are telling scary stories.
  • Venustraphobia – fear of beautiful women, according to a 1998 humorous article published by BBC News. The word is a portmanteau of “Venus trap” and “phobia”. Venustraphobia is the title of a 2006 album by Casbah Club.
  • Monkeyphobia – fear of monkeys, as named by Lord Monkey Fist in the animated series Kim Possible. Due to spending a summer in a cabin with a crazy chimp mascot, Ron Stoppable has a fear of monkeys, which he gets over several times, usually during battles with Monkey Fist, who is essentially Ron’s arch-nemesis.

 

Miscellaneous

  • Arachnophobia – “fear/dislike of spiders,” a film
  • Chromophobia – “hatred/fear of colours,” a film
  • Choreophobia – hatred of dance, a book by Anthony Shay about Iranian dance and its prohibition after the Iranian Revolution
  • Entomophobia – a genus of orchids. The word means “fear of insects”
  • Philophobia, an album by Arab Strap
  • Robophobia – a novel by Richard Evans