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There are many different phobias the world over. So many, in fact, that countless books have been written about them. They range from common phobias, such as the fear of the dentist, to more uncommon ones, such as fear of butter or buttons. So what are the 10 most common phobias out there?

10 Common Phobias, Including Fear of the Dentist

The ten most common phobias, in no particular order, are:

  1. Agoraphobia, which generally means people have a fear of open spaces. In many people, it also becomes a fear of crowded places, causing people to have panic attacks. Sometimes, they become completely housebound because a panic attack strikes the minute they set foot outdoors.
  2. Arachnophobia is the fear of spiders. So many people have this, that they have even turned it into a movie! Being afraid of spiders, which most of us are to some degree, is not the same as having a real phobia, however.
  3. Acrophobia, which is the fear of heights. People may feel afraid if they are close to an edge or even if they look out of a window. There are many different ways in which acrophobia manifests itself. In some cases, it can be so extreme that people physically cannot go to any kind of height.
  4. Claustrophobia is the polar opposite of agoraphobia. This is, therefore, the fear of enclosed or confined spaces. Many people are afraid that they cannot escape the small space they find themselves in, such as planes, trains, or elevators.
  5. Aviophobia, which is the fear of flying. Traveling by airplane is one of the safest modes of transportation out there, but it is common for people to be very afraid of it. Usually, it is because of various other issues, mainly the fact that they are not in control of such a big craft, which leads to them having panic attacks.
  6. Dental phobia, the previously mentioned fear of the dentist. Around 15% of people in the western world suffer from this. They are afraid of white coats, dentist drills, needles, and more.
  7. Social phobia, where people become afraid of certain social situations. Interview anxiety and the fear of public speaking are both forms of social phobia.
  8. Mysophobia happens when people are afraid of germs. This is often linked to OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). Most people who have mysophobia feel the need to continuously wash their hands and to avoid things they class as “unclean”.
  9. Aquaphobia is technically the fear of water, but usually presents itself more as the fear of drowning. Around 2% of people are believed to suffer from this particular phobia.
  10. Fear of commitment, which some people believe is not a phobia but rather a lifestyle choice. It happens when people avoid long term relationships and marriages. This can become an almost compulsive behavior that the person doesn’t understand or have control over, which is why it does rank as a real phobia.