Some may wonder why having a fear of alcohol would be a problem. After all many relations have been destroyed by alcohol. Potophobia can be complex and may have a moral component to the fear.
Some individuals may fear alcohol based on a religious conviction. Having observed others who have either become alcoholics or have engaged in dangerous or embarrassing activity while drunk.
The Causes of Potiphobia
We touched on some of the causes, but let’s look at some of them in more detail.
A religious upbringing can emphasis potential sin in the consumption of alcohol. This can make alcohol seem a ‘forbidden fruit’ that must be avoided at all costs.
It may be possible that you were born into a family that seems to have a predisposition to alcoholism. You might fear alcohol because you wish to protect yourself from becoming an alcoholic.
MedicineNet.com indicates this fear can also be called, “Dipsophobia, a word derived from the Greek “dipsa” (thirst) and “phobos” (fear). “Dipsa” is also used to form the words “dipsomania” (an abnormal craving for alcohol) and “dipsosis” (a medical condition characterized by abnormal thirst).
In this case the fear may be the craving of alcohol or that once tasted the thirst for the drink would overpower reason. Interestingly this is one phobia that most experts insist may not need to be cured as abstinence is generally thought of in positive terms related to alcohol consumption. The key problem with this phobia is the power individuals give to alcohol to control where they go and who they can befriend. In this case it can be a great debilitator.
Symptoms of Alcohol Fear
One of the most prevalent symptoms may actually pose problems for the social well being of an individual. That symptom is a strong aversion to any location where alcohol may be served. This might mean not attending a dining establishment friends may wish to visit. It might mean missing out on a county fair or community event because of the presence of alcohol. It might also mean foregoing family gatherings where alcohol will be potentially served.
Other symptoms include…
- Rapid heartbeat
- A sense of revulsion
- Panic attack
- Dry mouth
- Increased sweating
- Feelings of dread
Those who have this fear might even view their phobia as a point of superiority over those who may choose to consume alcohol. Generally speaking they will not phrase their fear in this way.
Overcoming Your Fear of Alcohol
The primary reason to overcome your fear of alcohol would be to connect with others who may not share your aversion to that which you may fear the most. You may find that you can still refuse to drink, but tolerate being around those who may choose to do so. You can find you may even be sociable in the process – once the fear is taken care of.
This fear can be countered by an understanding that your aversion to alcohol may be a stumbling block when it comes to relationships. Therapy may help, but a trusted friend may be a less expensive and equally useful option.