Phonophobia or Ligyrophobia- The Fear of Loud Noises
Does your heart start pounding madly when you hear fireworks?
Are you easily startled by the boom of thunder or a sudden shriek?
Do you instantly panic when you hear a fire alarm or ambulance siren?
Do you get all fidgety whenever someone raises their voice? Do you want to run away from the roar of a cheering crowd? Are you extremely bothered by the sound of a wailing infant?
All of us feel a little afraid when a loud noise takes us by surprise. But if you’re one of those who absolutely cannot bear this, chances are that you’re suffering from Phonophobia or Ligyrophobia.
So, what is Phonophobia or Ligyrophobia meaning? It is referred to as the condition where a person is scared of loud noises. Read on to find out what causes this phobia and how you can deal with it.
What Is Phonophobia?
Before trying to understand Phonophobia, it is crucial that you first understand what a phobia is. A phobia is a persistent, uncontrollable, and irrational fear. When exposed to certain triggers, a phobic person experiences a deep dread or even panic.
What is Fonofobia or Phonophobia? The term Phonophobia comes from the Greek language. “Phōnē” means voice or sound while “phobos” means fear.
This fear of shouting can make you hesitant to be in social situations. If you have this phobia, you make an effort to avoid crowds like concerts. Major events are a no-no.
How Common Is Phonophobia?
Is it normal to be scared of loud noises? You’d be surprised at the number of people who have a severe reaction to an ear-splitting noise. This condition can be manifested by people of any age group.
While this phobia is more common in children, adults aren’t immune to it either. Like any stimuli, loud noises are likely to get a reaction from small children. Luckily, they soon learn to cope with unexpected noises. If a child’s fear goes on for half a year or more, look for professional help.
Some people feel embarrassed to have this phobia. It can be hard to explain why you are terrified by everyday sounds, no matter how loud. Sufferers of Phonophobia may hesitate to confide in their loved ones or even doctors.
What Causes the Fear of Loud Noises?
Have you ever wondered, “Why do loud noises give me anxiety?” While it is not possible to determine the exact cause of this phobia, certain factors make you prone to developing it.
Some studies suggest that mental health issues like anxiety are associated with phobias. It may also be due to genetic factors as people who have a family history of phobias are prone to developing this condition.
External factors may also be responsible for the same. You may have experienced childhood trauma due to hearing a loud noise. As a toddler, you may have been terrified by a thunderstorm or family members shouting at each other. Children with autism are especially sensitive to stimuli, so they may also manifest this phobia.
It can be difficult to isolate the exact cause for your Ligyrophobia. However, it’s enough for you to accept that this fear is real for you.
Symptoms of Phonophobia
How do you know if you have Phonophobia? People suffering from Phonophobia are likely to experience the following symptoms. If you go through any of them, consider getting a Phonophobia test or Ligyrophobia test soon.
● Shaky balance
● Breaking into sweat
● Shortness of breath
● Nausea or vomiting
● Increased heart rate
● Feeling disconnected from reality
● Having a muddled head
● Being unable to express anything
● Panic attacks
If you’re suffering from this phobia, you may feel completely withdrawn from everyone and everything. You might not have the motivation to do things that would expose you to your phobia triggers. This avoidance can be so extreme that it starts to have a negative impact on your life.
If you’re constantly worried about your dread of loud noises, stress is a given. It’s no wonder phobias can lead to more serious health issues. As they say, your mental state is as important as your physical health, if not more.
Self-Help Practices for Phonophobia
Before consulting a medical professional, you can try to work on your fears by yourself. To begin with, you need to have the determination to face your fears and confront them. In this battle against your fear of shouting, the only weapon you’ll need is a strong will.
Plan Your Way
The first step is to come up with a self-help program that will help you stand up to your fears. If you have trouble coming up with a plan on your own, you can consult a psychologist.
Make Healthy Lifestyle Changes
You need to make some changes in your lifestyle, starting with getting proper sleep, eating healthy meals, and working out regularly. It’s also a good idea to reduce your caffeine intake. That includes chocolate and coffee, unfortunately.
Control Your Reaction
Don’t forget to check out some relaxation techniques so that you can control your breathing. Activities such as yoga or meditation can also aid you in attaining peace of mind, which is quite important. This way, being exposed to a blaring noise won’t send you into an uncontrollable panic attack.
Other than that, you can also work on your visualization techniques. Here. you’ll learn how to deal with your phobia yourself in a bold manner. Try to imagine how you’ll react if you hear a deafening noise. How will you feel? What will you do?
Join a Phobia Support Group
Having a phobia is no cakewalk, but you’re not alone in your journey of confronting your phobias. Participate in self-help groups or clubs that focus on this phobia. You can share practical tips and encouraging stories without fear of being judged or mocked.
Seeking Professional Help for the Fear of Loud Noises
If the above-mentioned self-help techniques don’t work, you must consult a medical practitioner. Several types of treatment can be used to cure this phobia.
In this type of psychotherapy, you’ll be exposed to your fear repeatedly but under the guidance of your psychotherapist. This is always done in a controlled environment. You can undergo this type of therapy in both individual and group sessions.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This type of psychotherapy is highly effective for curing specific phobias. It is a combination of different methods that involve discussing the reasons for your fear. Your therapist will give advice that will help you manage your symptoms.
Medications can also help you face your fears but aren’t recommended until the situation gets too out of your control.
No two people have the same reaction to their fears, so what works for one person may not work for you.
How to Avoid it Altogether
Are you still bewildered about how to cope with noise anxiety? While you cannot avoid all of your triggers, you can still make positive choices to help you cope. Each decision is a step toward reclaiming your life from this unreasonable fear.
It can be an uphill battle, but it is possible to overcome the terror of loud sounds. You must put up a strong front and be ready to win the fight against your phobia.
Phonophobia can be treated, provided you are willing to devote the necessary time and effort. Whether this condition has been present since childhood or has been acquired during adulthood, you can still confront it.
Soon, your fear of loud sounds will be a thing of the past. Instead of crying in terror, you will merely shrug upon hearing a startling noise.