- 1 Defecaloesiophobia, A Very Personal Fear
- 2 What Causes Defecaloesiophobia?
- 3 Symptoms of Defecaloesiophobia
- 4 Self Help – What Can You Do to Help Yourself?
- 5 Professional Help for Fear of Painful Bowel Movements
- 6 Learning to Cope with Defecaloesiophobia
Defecaloesiophobia, A Very Personal Fear
Have you ever felt afraid to go to the bathroom after an extremely filling thanksgiving dinner? Do you get freaked out just by the thought of having painful bowel movements? If your answer to any of the above questions is yes, then you may have Defecaloesiophobia.
Now bowel movements don’t exactly make for a fun topic to bring into a conversation, which probably makes it all that tougher for you to explain this fear to those around you. Not everyone may understand it, some may ever ridicule or make fun of you.
Living with a fear like this is not easy by any means. However, there is no need for you to lose hope. You can overcome your Defecaloesiophobia, but the first thing you need to do is find out why you have the fear in the first place.
What Causes Defecaloesiophobia?
In most cases, phobias arise from externally traumatizing events that may have taken place in the past. In some cases, it can also be genetic. Most phobias can be traced back to a specific event or the exact moment that may have been the root cause of the fear. Your upbringing can also play a vital part in causing your fear. If you were raised by people who are afraid of painful bowel movements, then they may have transmitted some of their uncertainty to you, which resulted in you having Defecaloesiophobia yourself.
Disliking something is very different compared to having a serious phobia. If just the thought of a subject, in this case, painful bowel movements, fills you with a sense of dread making it difficult to go about living your life normally, then it can be termed as a phobia.
Defecaloesiophobia is an acute fear of bowel movements. To someone that hasn’t had to suffer through fear like this, it may feel silly or redundant. But if you do have Defecaloesiophobia, then to you, that fear is very real.
You may even gradually stop eating enough during meals because of this fear.
Symptoms of Defecaloesiophobia
A phobia should never be taken lightly. People having Defecaloesiophobia will try to avoid all objects or situations that could potentially trigger the phobia.
Defecaloesiophobia is a mental anxiety disorder, meaning you could experience any number of symptoms, or sometimes maybe none at all. Some of the symptoms of Defecaloesiophobia are listed below.
Sometimes, in severe cases of Defecaloesiophobia, you may undergo a panic attack triggered by the phobia. Panic attacks can be extremely frightening when you’re the one that’s going through them.
It may also lead to many other psychological symptoms such as:
● Fear of losing control
● Fear of dying
● Withdrawing from others
● Feeling disconnected
● Difficulty concentrating
Sometimes the psychological symptoms such as anxiety and guilt can cause actual physical symptoms as well. Some of the physical symptoms you may incur if you have Defecaloesiophobia are listed below:
● Difficulty breathing
● A rapid increase in heartbeat
● Pain or tightness in the chest
● Headaches and dizziness
● Feeling faint
● Numbness or pins and needles
● Dry mouth
● A constant need to go to the toilet
● Chest pain
● Increased blood pressure
It is important to remember that every person is different and so the symptoms they suffer from. Not everyone may be able to understand what you’re going through as a sufferer of Defecaloesiophobia. However, you shouldn’t lose hope.
Like all other phobias, Defecaloesiophobia is an irrational fear. But saying that doesn’t make it any better, does it? However, if this fear is getting in the way of you living your life normally, then now may be the time to do something about it. You may even consider seeking out professional help.
Self Help – What Can You Do to Help Yourself?
Before you consider seeking out professional help, consider trying to help yourself. You could start by trying to convince yourself that you can overcome your fear. The mind tends to believe what it hears over and over again, so tell yourself it will be ok. You could even try whispering kind words of reassurance to yourself when you feel your fears being triggered.
Relaxation techniques are said to go a long way in helping in situations like this. Breathing exercises and meditation, even counting numbers in your head, could help you calm your mind down from all the anxiety it is feeling. Replace all the negative thoughts you have concerning your fear with positive reaffirmations.
Another technique you could try is to expose yourself to that which you fear. Reassure your mind that it won’t be as painful as your subconscious is making it out to be. You will find that with the right amount of effort, your levels of anxiety will eventually begin to decrease until they are so low, they won’t even count.
You could use any or all of the above-mentioned techniques to help you overcome your fear of painful bowel movements.
Professional Help for Fear of Painful Bowel Movements
Many people having Defecaloesiophobia don’t feel they need treatment. You may feel like you have control over the issue because you can avoid that which you fear, in this case, painful bowel movements. However, sometimes avoiding painful bowel movements may not be possible or may lead to entirely different problems altogether.
Counselling has proven to be a very effective method to treat the fear of painful bowel movements.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) may also be an effective way to overcome your fear. The treatment plan is built on the concept that whatever we think or perceive affects our behavior. CBT aims at identifying whether or not your fear is a real depiction of reality, and if they aren’t, then what strategies could help you overcome them.
You could also take medication to help overcome your fear. However, Medication should never be taken without consulting with a doctor beforehand. Generally, the medication should not be taken to overcome a phobia. Therapy has proven to be a much more effective and helpful way to achieve the same common goal.
Learning to Cope with Defecaloesiophobia
None of the above-mentioned techniques can guarantee a complete recovery from Defecaloesiophobia or any phobia in general. However, it will help you get some amount of control over them and reduce the drastic level of anxiety.
By starting to understand and learn how to overcome your Defecaloesiophobia, you have taken the first and most important step towards leading a relatively normal human life. So the next time you feel your fears get triggered, just take a deep breath and assure yourself that it is going to be alright!