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Fear of Zippers, or Jumaphobia

The Fear of Zippers: A Real Phobia?

Jumaphobia, per the urban dictionary, means the fear of zippers. Do some people actually suffer from an excessive fear of zippers? Well, yes. Although rare, some do suffer from an excessive fear of zippers.

There are three phases to zipper fear:

  1. The fear of using zippers
  2. The fear of hearing zippers
  3. The fear of seeing or looking at zippers

The fear of using zippers may stem from a bad experience with zippers. For men, you know what we mean. The user is in a hurry, zips up too fast, and catches a certain sensitive male body part in the zipper. An excellent example is the zipper scene from the movie Something About Mary. This scene is also known as “franks and beans.” Most men will wince at the thought of this mishap and with good reason. Almost every male has had an issue with a zipper at some point in his lifetime. For some, this may have caused a deep-rooted fear that manifested into a full phobia.

In other examples, a zipper might have been left unzipped and caused great embarrassment while in public. This may have resulted in the same gradual buildup of fear.

As far as the fear of hearing zippers, this may be a simple case of disgust. The sound of zippers may bring back a deep, painful memory or, very simply, a person just does not like the sound to a point of fear or disgust.

A Phobia of Fear or Disgust?

 Last is the fear of seeing a zipper. The form and shape of a zipper may cause extreme disgust which can lead to fear and the development of a phobia.

Symptoms of Jumaphobia

Although jumaphobia is not considered a serious or life altering phobia, it may come with some of the standard physical, mental, or emotional symptoms.

Physical Symptoms

  • Dizziness
  • Sweating
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Muscle Tension
  • Headaches
  • Nausea or Diarrhea
  • Dry mouth
  • Shortness of breath
  • Disgust

Mental/Emotional Symptoms

  • Refusal to be around people or clothing with zippers
  • Fear of objects that resemble zippers
  • A dread of clothes shopping or trying on items
  • Nightmares
  • Feeling of fear or nervousness when around zippers

Treating Jumaphobia

The fear of zippers may not be a serious life changing phobia; therefore, the treatment will be proportional to the fear.

Talk therapy will be helpful. Discussing your fear and how it effects your life can relieve stress.

Exposure therapy may be best suited for this type of excessive fear. You can deal with your fear by interacting directly with the item that scares you.

A professional therapist may be a good option, or you can try self-help and slowly work zippers into your life. Exposing yourself to zippers will eventually help train your mind that the fear is unfounded and doesn’t need to be a factor in your life.

Related fears and phobias are koumpounophobia, or the fear of buttons and fear of cotton balls, also known as sidonglobophobia.

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