What is Kenophobia ( fear of empty spaces)?

Do you know what is Kenophobia ( fear of empty spaces)?

Do you know what is Kenophobia ( fear of empty spaces)?- ichhori.com


What is kenophobia?

Kenophobia is an intense, irrational fear of open, empty spaces. 'Keno' comes from the Greek word for 'empty' or 'blank,' and 'phobia' comes from the Greek word for fear. Phobias such as kenophobia are classified as anxiety disorders by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). You can read more about anxiety disorders, here


A phobia is an uncontrollable, overwhelming fear of an animal, object, person, activity, environment, or situation. Most people with phobias are aware that the phobia's trigger poses little or no actual danger. However, the phobia's symptoms make them feel as if they have no control over their reactions and are powerless to overcome them.


The American Psychological Association classifies kenophobia as a simple (or specific) phobia, the most common type of phobia. According to the APA, up to 9% of the population suffers from a simple phobia.


When in an open space, a person suffering from kenophobia experiences intense anxiety. This could be anything from an empty indoor room to a sprawling outdoor landscape. A lack of defined borders or physical barriers can cause disorientation and even panic attacks in someone suffering from kenophobia.


Kenophobia is frequently confused with agoraphobia, a specific fear of going out in public or being in a situation from which it may be difficult to escape. There is some overlap; for example, both agoraphobia and kenophobia may include the fear of swimming in open water. However, agoraphobia can be triggered in a confined space, such as a subway car.


What are the symptoms of kenophobia?

Kenophobia, like most other simple phobias, has both physical and psychological symptoms. They can be mild, moderate, severe, or even incapacitating. The physical symptoms are caused by the body's instinctive fight-or-flight response, which results in the release of adrenaline in preparation for a perceived threat.



The following are common physical symptoms:

• Tightness in the chest or feeling as if you can't catch your breath
• Feeling dizzy, lightheaded, or like you're about to pass out?
• Nausea
• Sweating, clamminess, and nausea 
• Shaking or trembling


Other kenophobia symptoms include:

• Avoidance of open or empty spaces
• Recognize that your fear of voids is irrational
• dread or be concerned about having to spend time in an empty or open space
• Guilt or shame about the fear of open spaces
• Inability to control or overcome apprehension about empty spaces
• When in an empty or open space, one experience intense panic and a strong desire to flee.


Children who have a simple phobia may be unable to express their feelings. Clinginess, inconsolable crying, or a temper tantrum may be manifestations of their feelings.


Anxiety symptoms caused by kenophobia can be disruptive or non-disruptive. When they start interfering with your daily life or preventing you from engaging in professional, personal, or social interactions, it's time to seek help. 


If you notice that your (or your child's) ability to live normally is being hampered by a fear of empty spaces, see your doctor as soon as possible. Treatment is often most effective when the phobia is addressed as soon as possible.


What are the causes of kenophobia?

The exact cause of the majority of phobias is still unknown. A combination of genetic and environmental influences, as with many other emotional or psychological conditions, is most likely at work. 

Kenophobia can be traced back to a specific incident for some people, such as a time when a child became lost in an open field or was left alone in an empty room. This trauma becomes imprinted within the amygdala, a small area of your brain that controls emotional reactions, including the fight-or-flight response, in these cases. When you are exposed to new stimuli that are similar to what caused the previous trauma, your amygdala triggers the same feelings and reactions as before.


However, many people who suffer from kenophobia are unable to pinpoint a specific triggering event. Genetics may play a role in these cases, as certain personality traits and factors can be inherited. Some phobias appear to run in families, but this could simply be due to children modelling their parents' and relatives' behaviour. As a result, determining whether phobias are genetic, environmental, or a combination of the two is difficult.


What are the treatments for kenophobia?

Many of life's greatest adventures take place in large, open spaces, such as going to the beach, relaxing in a park, or driving on the open road. There are treatment options if your fear of empty spaces is interfering with your ability to live your life or interact with loved ones. Phobias do not simply imply that you must "grow up" or "get over it." Phobias are real, and admitting that you have one is the first step toward recovery. After that, you can seek treatment from a qualified provider or counsellor.


The most effective kenophobia treatments are psychotherapy-based:


• Cognitive behavior therapy: This type of psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, teaches you how to recognise and change unhealthy thoughts, emotions, and behaviours. A therapist will assist you in changing your perception of open spaces and developing the skills necessary to confront your fear. You could also talk about the origins of your kenophobia as a child. CBT is frequently combined with exposure therapy by therapists.


• Exposure therapyExposure therapy is a type of therapy that involves exposing oneself This type of talk therapy exposes you to your fear of empty spaces gradually and repeatedly. This process, also known as desensitisation therapy, guides you through a series of controlled situations that gradually increase your tolerance and confidence around the source of your fear. Your therapist may instruct you to begin by picturing open spaces. You could then look at pictures of empty landscapes or go visit a large open space. The goal is to master your fear rather than allow it to master you.


Talk therapy is the most effective treatment for long-term phobia relief. Medication for social phobias is sometimes prescribed by doctors on a short-term basis, as it can help people begin talk therapy. Medicines can also help with phobias that involve temporary social situations, such as public speaking.


Without treatment, social phobias, including kenophobia, can lead to complications. Complications that could arise include:


• Depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders, which can sometimes lead to suicidal ideation,
• Problems with work, school, and social relationships, as well as social isolation and loneliness
• Substance abuse with alcohol or drugs in an attempt to self-medicate and deal with the symptoms of the phobia


Previous Post Next Post