The nose is a wonderful part of your body. With the nose you can smell a rose or a favorite meal. With a nose you can sense impending danger in the form of a natural gas leak or you can find ourselves thinking of a past event simply by encountering a scent tied to that memory. The nose helps you identify tastes and ensures sunglasses have a place to rest. And when that nose bleeds it is generally stopped quickly with a personal eagerness to continue enjoying the aroma of life around you. When you live with a profound fear of nosebleeds you are said to have Epistaxiophobia.
When I was young I had nosebleeds on a regular basis. I never knew why and found them a nuisance. While I never developed a fear of nosebleeds I can certainly empathize with those who do.
What Causes Epistaxiophobia?
Some cultures and religious sects believe that the loss of blood is the loss of life. The belief system says that “life is in the blood”. The loss of blood is often considered a loss of an individual’s life force. This can be considered a fearful prospect by those who accept this belief.
When you have a bloody nose you may begin to believe the injury is life threatening especially if you struggle to get the bleeding under control.
You may have observed someone who had a nosebleed. The prognosis may have been a blood vessel that was hard to control. The nosebleed may have been the result of a physical fight or it could be related to a greater illness. Any of these potentials can create an atmosphere perfect for the growth of a fully developed phobic response.
Symptoms of Epistaxiophobia
It’s impossible to run away from yourself, but an epistaxiophobe may be interested in trying. The nosebleed itself may not hurt, but the visual aspect of the blood in the tissue can create high anxiety and am unreasoning fear that the individual may not live through the ordeal.
Other symptoms may also include…
- Panic attacks
- A constant checking of the nose for signs of bleeding
- Believing oneself to be anemic even when there is no evidence
Just like the fear of injury will keep individuals from engaging in life so too fear of nosebleeds keeps the phobic personalities who embrace them away from any activity that has even a small chance of creating a nosebleed.
How to Overcome Epistaxiophobia
Medical advances are huge. There has been a greater growth in understanding illness and treating disease than ever before. Proper information about nosebleeds can allow an individual to to proper precautions without significant fear that their lives may be at stake if they get physically hurt.
A therapist can help the phobic personality understand why they fear in the first place. Then they can work to provide tools to facilitate a rational response to the fear stimulus. Combined this can provide an effective treatment plan for the epistaxiophobe.
The fear of nosebleeds is also referred to as:
- Nosebleed fear