Strange Phobias You’ve Never Heard Of Before

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Fears. We all have them. They are part and parcel of human existence, brought on, largely, by the uncertainty of daily life. Whether we dive headlong or cautiously dip our toes into the Great Unknown, we are confronted with a variety of fears, each day. Fear of failure, worry over personal health and that of our family members, financial fears—the list goes on.
While the current pandemic has magnified many of the things we fret about, increasing anxiety and mental stress, normal fears can have a positive effect when properly managed. For instance, concerns over money can prompt us to manage our finances more wisely and frugally—especially these days.
But when does a fear become something so crippling that it is no longer healthy or beneficial? What’s the difference between a fear and a phobia? In a nutshell, while fear of something will elicit a generally reasonable response to the trigger, a person’s response to a phobia is typically much more extreme and uncontrollable. Phobias (which are often rooted in past traumas and post-traumatic incidents, long-term stress, and even genetics) get in the way of living your best life, because the anxiety involved is so severe and debilitating.
While we may be familiar with the more typical phobias—for instance, claustrophobia or the fear of enclosed spaces, ophidiophobia, the fear of snakes, and acrophobia, or the fear of heights —there are a slew of heart-stopping, panic-inducing conditions so peculiar they’re relegated to the realm of “things most of us have never heard of before.” There are even several newer phobias born from the ever-increasing tech landscape we call life.
Here are 33 of the strangest phobias. And, lest you suffer a massive bout of FOMO (fear of missing out, which won’t be on this list, as you’ve surely heard of it already), you’ll want to click through to the end.