A phobia of open spaces like any other phobia can interfere with how you live your life. Phobia’s are serious afflictions that can affect every aspect of your life. Agoraphobia or the fear of open spaces is especially debilitating because most people that have this phobia cannot leave their home.
There is no known reason for this phobia like most phobias but it is expected that a traumatic event can cause the phobia. While it was once believed that this broad phobia was a standalone disorder many mental health professionals believe that it is actually a symptom of panic attacks.
Agoraphobia is a broad term that is used to describe the phobia that a person feels when they are in a specific environment. That environment can be crowded spaces or wide open spaces. It is in essence the opposite of claustrophobia the fear of small or confined places.
This phobia is more common in women than in men. It typically begins between the ages of 20-40 years of age and there is typically some sort of traumatic event that triggers the phobia. The trauma may have been real or perceived.
This is an alarmingly prevalent phobia with approximately 2.2% of the adult population suffering from this phobia. That means that over 3 million people in the US suffer with this phobia. It is estimated that agoraphobia can account for up to 60% of all phobias.
Some mental health professionals believe that since the availability of the internet has increased and you basically do not HAVE to leave the house to socialize, buy goods and really do anything that the incidence of this phobia has increased exponentially.
When you stop to consider that you can literally order anything you need, talk to whomever you want and even work from the comfort of your home it makes sense that this would be a very easy to adopt phobia.
Treatment protocols typically involve treating the panic attacks with medication and psychotherapy to reduce the phobia. Combined treatment is usually the most successful. People have made full recovery and moved on to a more balanced life once the phobia is under control.
While you can use the internet to get what you need in life it cannot take the place of real life experiences so treatment is a necessity to live a fuller richer life.