Astraphobia literally translates to fear of thunder, lightning and fear of thunderstoms. Fear by itself can range from mild discomfort to extreme panic. When the fear developed is disproportionate to the danger that is presented, it is called a phobia. Thus, Astraphobiais an extreme, irrational and exaggerated fear of thunderstorms, thunder and lightning.
It is also goes by several other names too: astrapophobia, tonitrophobia, brontophobia, keraunophobia.
A fear of thunderstorms is common in small children. Normally the fear will subside when the child reaches adolescence. However, in some children this fear persists into adulthood and develops into a phobia. It’s then that it starts interfering with daily lives.
There are many reasons that may have caused this phobia to develop. In many cases it is the occurrence of a traumatic incident in the past in the presence of a thunderstorm. This could be an extreme event such as a serious automobile accident which took place during a thunderstorm. It may be that the victim saw a person being struck by lightning. However, it’s more likely to be inherited from the behaviour of a peer during a thunder storm or picked up from media news reports, documentaries of scary movies which always seem in involve a thunderstorm!
Forget Astraphobia though … no one need fear thunderstorms again thanks to a number of incredible treatment programs that really do work.
Thunderstorms are a completely natural weather phenomena that are unavoidable. Like it or not they’re going to happen from time to time. Often they are not accurately forecase and hence can come as a surprise. Sometimes they can feel quite scarey to us all. They can certainly trigger strong emotions – not just in humans but in animals too.
Quite often the reactions of individuals are at opposite extremes. Some love to watch them and find them incredibly dramatic and exciting. To others though they are absolutely terrifying and cause symptoms akin to extreme anxiety as detailed below.
Children often display symptoms of Astraphobia however usually these will just be a general fear. With love, encouragement and support most will grow out of this fear but for some the fear develops into adulthood and becomes this irrational, extreme fear of thunderstorms.
The symptoms of Astraphobia are not very different from those that occur in other phobias. The physical symptoms are (amongst others):
Psychological symptoms include:
People with Astraphobia take a lot of safety precautions including staying indoors for fear of a storm that may break out. At the slightest hint of a thunderstorm, they switch off the electricity, close all the curtains in the house and try to find a cozy and safe corner where they can hide. They sometimes get into bed and bury themselves under the blankets.
Sufferers of the phobia become agitated during a thunderstorm and overreact to touch. They suffer emotional distress and do not prefer anyone making an attempt to communicate with them.
You weren’t born with particular fears or anxiety – instead you have developed them along your life journey so far. In very simple terms Hypnotherapy works by re-setting the mind to produce the rational response to a specific situation or environment that you had before the phobia was initially triggered off. Find Out More >
Neuro-linguistic programming or NLP combines neurology and linguistics and creates a sort of programming that helps people change their thinking habits, help them deal with anxiety, stress, depression and overcome particular fears. In short, this means taking a specific fear or phobia and disassociating and reframing the experience to prevent the irrational response. Find Out More >
In simple terms Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or CBT as it’s more commonly referrred to, is a talking therapy which takes your specific issue, fear or specific phobia and focusses on your thoughts, beliefs and attitudes and how they affect your behaviour and emotions in respect of this issue. It takes on the notion that your thoughts (cognition) creates emotions which, in turn, controls our reactions (behaviour). Find Out More >
If the mere thought or sound of thunder fills you with fear and terror then take a look at one of our recommended, self-help treatment programs that are all guaranteed, proven and effective.