The Fear Of Vacuums -It Sucks!
Scared of a vacuum? Does the sound of a vacuum have you running out of your house? Chances are you are suffering from zuigerphobia.
Phobias like these are difficult to deal with and explain to others. If you feel anxious and troubled in the presence of a vacuum cleaner or if the loud noise of a vacuum cleaner leaves you startled and alarmed, this article will help you understand your phobia better.
Continue reading to know everything about fear of vacuums—its causes, how to tell if you have it, how you can treat it, and helpful ways to cope with your fear.
Everything You Need To Know About Zuigerphobia
Zuigerphobia is a type of specific phobia, an intense and irrational fear of an object or situation that may not pose any actual danger. Although you probably know a vacuum cleaner can do no harm, the thought of one sends a sense of panic and dread down your spine. This usually occurs due to a negative experience that may have been previously encountered with a vacuum cleaner.
Causes Of Zuigerphobia
Various studies have estimated that around 15.6% of people in The United States of America suffer from a specific phobia, which may arise at any point in their life. Although specific fears are commonly found among adults and adolescents, young children, including infants, may also be upset by the loud noises and sound that is associated with a vacuum cleaner, which later results in a full-fledged vacuum phobia.
It can develop corresponding to other sound-related phobias or mental health issues. The most common ones include phonophobia, the fear of loud sounds; misophonia, a mental disorder that makes people intolerant of certain sounds; and other psychological disorders that make us sensitive to sounds and noises.
People who are unable to manage their response to loud, uncomfortable noises and lack the skills to control their unstable reactions to it start perceiving a vacuum cleaner as a source of imminent danger. Besides kids, the fear of vacuums is also commonly observed in pets. The responses of a pet are similar to the reactions of a human when they are exposed to vacuum cleaners.
What Is Zuigerphobia Like?
Zuigerphobia inhibits you from feeling comfortable and at ease in any situation or circumstance that involves a vacuum cleaner or a loud noise that is similar that of a vacuum cleaner. Adults lose the ability to function correctly in a crowded environment, and they find socializing hard in loud, noisy groups. Children with zuigerphobia have a hard time concentrating in a talkative classroom or actively participating in activities that involve large groups and chatter.
Symptoms Of Zuigerphobia
When you are suffering from zuigerphobia, or any specific phobia for that matter, just the thought of the source of your fear, in this case, a vacuum cleaner, can send shivers down your spine and make you restless. Let us take a look at some common symptoms of zuigerphobia.
● Extreme anxiety.
● The desire to immediately escape or run away from the situation.
● The feeling of being trapped and claustrophobic.
● Difficulty in completing routine activities.
● Difficulty in concentrating or focussing.
● Mood swings, irritation, and bad temper.
● Lack of mental and physical control over the body.
● Heart palpitations.
● Choking sensations.
● Excessive sweating.
● Nausea. The feeling of “going crazy”.
● Feeling dizzy and light-headed.
● Infants may end up crying and screaming.
● Heat flashes and chills throughout the body.
How Do You Deal With Zuigerphobia?
The earlier you get to the root cause of the issue, and the sooner you start the treatment process for zuigerphobia, the less intense and enduring the fear will be.
You should deal with zuigerphobia as you would deal with any other fear or phobia. If the fear is in its early stage, self-help, meditation, and seeking the help of a therapist can work wonders. Your therapist may work on gradually desensitizing you to vacuums in a professional setting before applying it to the real world.
Zuigerphobia Treatments – How You Can Help Yourself
Because zuigerphobia most commonly develops in children, it requires special and proper attention. Zuigerphobia can be easily confused with other mental issues and disorders that concern loud sounds. Therefore, before getting a child treated for zuigerphobia, make sure the problem is verified by a professional.
One of the most popular and successful treatment methods for children who have zuigerphobia is desensitization, which is based on the principles of cognitive-behavioral therapy. Through this therapy, you can identify the change in the pattern of your fears through mindful practices. You get in more control of your behaviors by understanding your feelings and thoughts more comprehensively.
Through desensitization, you gradually expose your child to the vacuum they are fearful of. This is one of the best treatment options for younger children, which does not require direct help from a therapist. Older children should be encouraged to seek help and advice from a medical practitioner to help them deal with their phobia.
Here are the steps that you must follow to complete the desensitization process.
● Unplug the vacuum cleaner and let your child play with it.
● You can turn the vacuum cleaner into a fun character, develop stories around it, and then narrate it to your child.
● You can then turn the cleaner on. However, before you turn it on, make sure to inform your child about it and give them the time to decide if they will remain in the room or not.
How To Cope With Zuigerphobia?
Coping with zuigerphobia is as complex as dealing with any other fear; however, it is not impossible. The most unfortunate fact about this phobia is that even infants are at the risk of developing it. If you’re an adult, you can try self-help methods, reach out to people to discuss your fears, and try to overcome your fears by learning other coping techniques.
If your child is afraid of a particular object or is fearful of loud noises, comfort them and make them feel safe. Try to talk to them and discuss what they are feeling. Be supportive of their feelings, no matter how irrational you may think they are. Schedule an appointment with a children’s counselor. Be patient with them, listen to them, and help them through the process of overcoming their fear.
If you feel the overpowering need to steer clear of vacuum cleaners, you have most likely developed a fear of it. But just because a primary, everyday object has negatively affected your routine, that does not mean that you have no way out of it. Most specific phobias, including zuigerphobia, are considered irrational. However, they can be as threatening and dreadful as any other phobia. So make sure to practice mindfulness, seek advice from competent sources, and treat your phobia promptly.
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