Decoding Atomosophobia – The Fear of Atomic Explosions
This fear goes back generations starting in the late 40’s. Did you ever get nauseous when there was a mention of an explosion on the TV? Do you remember the first time you saw a documentary on atomic explosions and how you felt sick in your stomach? How your heart races every time there is news of an explosion in the world.
If you are starting to panic as you read, then you might have a fear of atomic explosions – atomosophobia.
It may seem like the most irrational fear you’ve ever heard of, but it is important to understand what is atomosophobia. It is one of the more irrational fears on the list of phobias. However, it is a serious and specific fear under the broad category of fear of explosions, also known as ekrixiphobia.
Then again ekrixiphobia is a fear of explosions, and atomosophobia is a fear of atomic explosions. Though this fear of atomic explosions can overlap or broaden to include ekrixiphobia. Where a person suffering from atomosophobia, if untreated, starts to also fear any type of explosions.
Let’s take a closer look to know the atomosophobia causes and understand what is atomosophobia in depth.
Common atomosophobia causes
Atomosophobia causes could be broadly classified under two categories – personal and biological:
You or someone you know could have had a traumatic experience with an explosion. This created a fear in your mind about the event itself. Which later became focused on explosions caused by atomic bombs.
An excess or low level of hormones in the body can throw your response mechanism out of order. This could affect your perception of the atomic explosion as an immediate threat.
This is part of the biological causes. If your genes make you prone to anxiety then a triggering event could lead to the development of irrational fears. This isn’t so much about the subject of your fear but rather the fear itself. Whatever triggers your fear response becomes the root cause and subject of your fear. Unfortunately, there is no logical explanation as to what triggers a person or why.
Everything You Need to Know About Atomosophobia
Did you know that the most common trigger for people suffering from atomosophobia was finding out about the 1945 incident of atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki?
It is essential to understand what is atomosophobia because it is a rare type of phobia and difficult to notice. While many people may fear atomic explosions, the fear is varying in level, and hence could go unnoticed forever.
It is also possible that two individuals experience two different types of atomosophobia. Types of atomosophobia could be different in terms of the trigger, cause, symptom, or effect.
In extreme cases, the person experiences a heightened sense of fear that leads them to decide to move as far away from civilization as possible. They find a remote location to settle in where atomic explosions are most unlikely to occur or someplace too far for radiation to spread.
Symptoms of Atomosophobia
Atomosophobia symptoms do not just show up when an explosion happens, it may also show up when the person is watching something about an explosion, hears a sound resembling an explosion, and even when the person is thinking about an explosion.
Here are the common symptoms when experiencing triggers:
● Elevated blood pressure
● Hot flashes or chills
● Shortness of breath
● Dizziness, fainting, or losing consciousness
● Trembling, shaking, or tremors
● Heart palpitations
● Upset stomach
● Dry mouth
● Loss of speech (temporary)
● Ringing in the ears
● Fear of losing control
● Fear of radiation
● Fear of death
● Anxious or nervous
● Fear of atomic war
● Obsessive thoughts that you can’t shut out
How Do You Deal with Atomosophobia?
Atomosophobia treatment is difficult to begin considering the fear is difficult to even notice because atomic explosions are rare and any mention or discussion about them is easier to ignore or step away from.
But in serious conditions, the person can’t deal with the fear and may want to run far away from crowded cities. Until it is mild, it is rather harmless. But for people who suffer the severe extent of it, it could change their lives and of those around them.
Dealing with atomosophobia (if it is even detected in the first place) isn’t possible. The fear could cause the person to make some life-altering decisions. The best solution is to first diagnose and then seek professional help for atomosophobia.
Along with professional help, use these atomosophobia treatments at home to help yourself as well:
Self Help – What Can You Do to Help Yourself?
Mindfulness exercises involve you bringing your attention back to the present. This can be practiced regularly or whenever you notice yourself reacting to a trigger. It helps you to reign in your thoughts and look at the situation with a clear mind.
Practicing breathing techniques daily gives you a default technique that can be internalized. The purpose is to prepare you for any unexpected situation that puts stress on your body. Breathing regulates oxygen flow to the body thus telling your brain to relax.
Talking to yourself helps rationalize unhelpful thoughts that come to your mind. If you can explain your behavior then you should also question it. Whether an action or situation is sensible? Is it necessary? Am I overreacting? Can I do something to get out of this situation that will change what I am feeling? What am I feeling?
You can prepare these questions and answer them regularly. That’ll help you in two ways, you learn to teach yourself a method to cope with atomosophobia and the other is you shift your attention from the problem to yourself, and then from your fear to your logic.
Your diet could be the biggest culprit behind your anxiety issues. Not just the phobia but anxiety in general. This is why reducing the quantity of alcohol, drugs, coffee and unprocessed food is recommended. It should tell you whether your food could be behind your fear.
Essentially the fear of an atomic explosion is out of your control, but the way you respond to it is. So, let go of the fear by finding something else to focus on.
While these are effective, we don’t suggest you rely only on self-help for treating atomosophobia. Professional help will be necessary to ensure the fear doesn’t return or grow severe.
Professional Help for Atomosophobia – The Options Available
Atomosophobia treatment calls for professional help. Here are a few options you can explore:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
A CBT procedure involves various methods to reduce and undo your perception of atomic explosions. A trained therapist will first try to find out the root cause of your fear by asking you certain questions. This helps them get a diagnosis which then helps them prepare a plan to treat the phobia.
Once diagnosed your therapist will help you open up more about the triggers. These sessions turn into discussions that move you into a rationalizing mindset.
Desensitization helps change your view of the threat and also your fear response. Though it has been controversial as it requires the patient to be repeatedly exposed to the trigger. No, it isn’t real, only a stimulus.
Medications could be an effective solution if the problem is your biological system. For example, genetic disorders or imbalanced hormones.
Learning to Cope with Atomosophobia
So, now that you’ve read all about it, do you think you have the fear of atomic explosions? Or do you know someone who might?
Whatever the case now you know what to do about it.
And…if you’re getting nervous thinking that all this reading might cause you to develop a fear, don’t be. Despite all the scary statistics, an extreme case of atomosophobia which causes you to run to the woods is highly rare, and yet, easily treatable.