Fear of Frogs

There’s a new movie out called “Princess and the Frog”. Many people are flocking to theaters to see the animated flick from Walt Disney. Others? Well, they are staying home and even avoiding television commercials that market the movie. If they are staying away because of  fear they may be suffering from Ranidaphobia.

There are of course stereotypical responses to any strong aversion to frogs. See if you remember any of these – girls are always afraid of frogs – frogs give you warts – frogs urinate on you whenever you pick them up (OK maybe that one’s true)  – they spit blood – they are all poisonous. Frogs were a plague in the biblical epic of Israel’s exodus from Egypt.

What Causes Ranidaphobia?

The causes of fear are many. In fact the above list may actually be partial contributors to the overall sense of fear. Frogs are often considered dirty and ugly. They may have been the object of antagonistic threats by young male bullies in school or they may have jumped in the general vicinity of an individual who already had a general fear of amphibians.

Perhaps because most frogs can also blend in with their surroundings their sudden appearance can also arouse an immediate instinct to flee. Whatever the ultimate source of the fear it is as real as the fear of bees, dogs or cats.

Symptoms of Ranidaphobia

The fear response may be mild with the phobic personality only responding negatively to live frogs. In more severe cases the visual response may extend to photographs or even toys that have the appearance of frogs.

Other symptoms may include…

  • Air hunger
  • Heart palpitations
  • Trembling
  • Screaming
  • Crying
  • Fainting
  • Control Loss
  • Panic attack
  • Strong urge to flee

As with most fears related to creatures this one can be overcome with a variety of therapies if the individual is willing to participate in the recovery process.

How to Overcome Ranidaphobia

Behavior therapy is often used to help modify response to fear stimuli. This is often what the therapist uses to treat this phobia and often meets with positive results.

This therapy works to modify the way an individual responds to the fear stimulus and allows a therapist to walk the phobic individual through the most difficult moments when every bone in their body wants to escape the situation. It may not cure the fear, but it can provide the means to successfully altering personal response to fearful situations.

Along with therapy a comprehensive education on the subject of frogs can help you see them as less ominous and perhaps even more helpful as they reduce insect populations while remaining harmless (for the most part) to humans. The only variation to this would be exotic frogs that are not typically seen in the United States except perhaps in zoos.

Some phobic personalities have come to at least appreciate frogs even if they have no desire to interact with them on a regular basis. Each step is important to avoiding a long-term fear-based response.

The fear of frogs is also referred to as:

  • Frog fear
  • Ranidaphobia
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