Diamonds in the Rough

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A growing number of people are reporting a fear of holes. The reaction is so severe that even seeing photos of holes can set off a panic attack.

The condition is called trypophobia. According to the website Trypophobia.com, “Trypophobia is a weird kind of phobia and it can generally be considered as the fear of shapes. We are talking especially by the shapes created by nature.” Until recently, it didn’t garner much attention from scientists or doctors. But now, a study in the journal Psychological Science attempts to explain the fear.

According to site, the fear covers “clustered holes in skin, meat, wood, plants, coral, sponges, mould, dried seed pods and honeycomb.”

The reaction to these holes is intense. “These can make them feel that their skin is crawling, shudder, feel itchy and physically sick when seeing these images because they really find it disgusting and gross. Some of these people think that something might be living inside those holes and some of them are afraid that they might fall in these holes,” the website explains.” It can even trigger panic attacks. Most people have adapted to be able to recognize that there is no danger, but for trypophobes, it is an unconscious reflex reaction that they can’t control.

 Here are a few links that may help for support and to learn more:

http://www.experienceproject.com/groups/Am-Trypophobic/182183

http://apotential.wordpress.com/2011/08/07/things-you-dont-learn-in-psych-trypophobia/

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/are-you-afraid-of-holes/

On a personal note, The reason I decided to post about this particular subject today was because I recently found out someone I love suffers from Trypophobia. I think it is important that we learn as much as we can about all phobias and different mental illnesses. Educate yourself!

Image~DarcSunshine~

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