The fear of fainting or weakness is known as Asthenophobia. Sometimes, fainting and weakness can be symptoms of more serious illnesses.
Reasons For This Phobia
If you fear fainting, you may be concerned about the dangers it presents. Fainting unexpectedly can present a threat to physical safety. Those who are prone to fainting may become anxious about their disorder, because they know it can happen in any situation or environment.
Head injuries or other problems can result from fainting and falling on hard surfaces. As well, some people have social anxiety triggered by persistent fainting or weakness.
Fainting can also be known as blacking out, and it’s defined by a loss of consciousness that is short-term, followed by a full recovery. Weakness can include a feeling of general malaise, often accompanied by lightheadedness and dizziness.
Pregnancy A Trigger?
Certain conditions, such as pregnancy, can cause feelings of weakness and they may also cause fainting. The extra stress on the cardiovascular system can take its toll on a pregnant woman.
For those women who have experienced fainting and weakness in pregnancy, the chances of developing Asthenophobia may be greater. As well, women who’ve heard tales of fainting and weakness in pregnancy may become fearful that it will happen to them.
Fainting is the result of reduced blood flow to the brain. Heart problems, epilepsy, and other health conditions can cause fainting and weakness. Those who fear fainting and weakness may also fear the underlying conditions that make these symptoms a reality.
The Fear Of Serious Illness Can Cause This Phobia
If fainting isn’t accompanied by an underlying diagnosis, someone may be very fearful that something is wrong with them. In cases like these, a thorough medical exam can be reassuring. It’s better to get to the bottom of faintness and weakness, rather than worrying about it all of the time. Most conditions that cause these symptoms can be treated effectively.
The Fainting Game
As unbelievable as it sounds, some teens have chosen to play a deadly game known as The Fainting Game, where they use a bedsheet or some other implement to bring on fainting. The point of the Fainting Game is to obtain some sort of rush. In this sense, the Fainting Game resembles another very dangerous game – autoerotic asphyxiation.
A teenager in Wisconsin may have inadvertently taken her own life in pursuit of this fleeting high. The parents of the girl were traumatized to discover their daughter dead, her neck wrapped in a bedsheet. Jennifer Cernekee was only 14 when her death occurred.
Stories about ill-advised experiments with fainting may be triggers for Asthenophobia.
Symptoms And Treatment
The fear of fainting and weakness can manifest itself in many ways, the most common being panic attack-related. Panic attacks are quite prevalent among those with phobias. The intense and persistent anxiety that a phobia causes can lead to feelings of terror and doom, headaches, nausea, and avoidance. A whole range of physical and emotional side effects can be the source of great stress for anyone with Asthenophobia.
The best strategy for treating phobias is psychotherapy. It’s important to address any underlying fears and repressed memories that act as constant triggers. In some cases, it’s possible to lessen the severity of symptoms through therapy. Anti-depressants may be required to treat physical and emotional symptoms that affect daily life in a negative way.