FEAR OF THUNDER

FEAR OF THUNDER

Thunder and storm phobia is a type of phobia that falls under the category of specific phobias. People with this type of phobia are extremely afraid of weather disturbances, the sound of thunder and lightning.

They close the windows at home to avoid hearing this sound, turn on very loud music if necessary, close the curtains to avoid seeing lightning, and sometimes even get under the covers. On days when the weather is bad, they don’t even want to go out because they think that something very bad will happen to them outside. So they constantly check the weather forecast.

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How Fear and Phobia of Thunder Starts

It is a well-known fact that natural phenomena such as thunderstorms sometimes result in death. Although not very often, sometimes events such as lightning strikes or electric shocks during storm events can cost people their lives. For these reasons, it is common for people to fear thunder and storms. However, if this fear is felt much more intensely and causes difficulties in daily life, this is thunder and storm phobia.

It is a fact that young children are afraid of the majestic sound of thunder. It is a foreign and quite frightening sound for them. In children who experience this fear severely, it is likely to turn into a phobia in the future.

Phobia of thunder and storms can also occur as a result of negative and traumatic events. Thunder and thunderstorm phobia can occur in people who have experienced an event such as electric shock, in people who have been struck by lightning in a nearby area and have seen the destruction in this place, in people who have lost loved ones as a result of electric shock.

It can also occur through genetic transmission. Having individuals in the family who are very afraid of thunder and storms can cause people to have this phobia.

Fear of Thunder and Symptoms of Thunderstorm Phobia

As with other specific phobias, people with thunder and storm phobia experience symptoms such as trembling, crying, inability to breathe, panic, rapid heartbeat and nausea. However, some symptoms are different from other phobias. People with this phobia do not want to be alone during weather events such as storms, lightning flashes and thunder. Loneliness causes them to panic even more. Another symptom specific to this phobia is the desire to hide somewhere. When people with this phobia see that the weather is bad, they behave in behaviors such as hiding under a blanket or bed, hiding in a closet, or closing themselves in a room that they think is sheltered.

You can see that people with phobias are very concerned with the weather. They are constantly looking to see if the weather is bad. These people usually prefer to go out on sunny days and stay at home on overcast days.

The Effects of Thunder and Storm Phobia

At first glance, a phobia of thunder and storms may not seem like a phobia that affects our lives very much, but this is not the case. Because people with this phobia have to restrict their lives because of their phobia and problems arise in their social and professional lives. Imagine you are going to work, you have a very important meeting that day but it is overcast and raining.

While this situation is quite normal for people without phobia, it is a nightmare for people with sky phobia. For this reason, their work life is negatively affected. To give another example, you are going to your friend’s birthday but there is lightning in the sky, in this case, people with phobia cannot leave the house. This has a negative impact on their social life.

Treatment for Fear of Thunder and Storm Phobia

Cognitive behavioral therapy is a psychotherapy method that is frequently used in the treatment of thunder and storm phobia and has a high success rate. Here, the causes of the phobia are examined and it is aimed to make progress by addressing these causes.

EMDR is another technique frequently used to overcome this phobia. This technique, which has its origins in CBT, will be very useful for the client if the cause of the phobia is a trauma. Because EMDR focuses on the trauma memories and focuses on eliminating the cognitive effects of these memories that continue to this day and neutralizing the person about the memory. Since this phobia, as mentioned above, is highly based on past memories and traumas, EMDR will be a purposeful and successful method.

One of the treatment methods for thunder and storm phobia is breathing therapy. With this treatment, people try to calm down by using correct breathing techniques during adverse weather conditions.

Exposing the person to the phobia slowly and gradually is also one of the effective treatment methods. In this treatment method, psychotherapists can start by showing a video of thunder, storms or lightning strikes.

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