Hypopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia: Fear of Long Words

Fears and phobias are very real and the human mind is capable of developing them towards practically anything or situation.

The fear of long words phobia or Hippopotomonstrosestrosesquippedaliophobia is often considered a humorous or fictitious phobia; However, that is not the case and the long words phobia is actually very real and does exist, although it is considered to be one of the  rarest phobias in the world .

People suffering from hypopotomonastrosestrosis-equipped alliopathy tend to experience great anxiety when faced with long words. It is ironic that the scientific name given to this phobia is so long.

These people, for this reason, panic at terms such as hypopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia .

Definition of hypopotomonastrosestrosesquipoallophobia

Hippopotomonastrosestrosesquipoallophobia can be divided into several parts: Hippo is Greek for “horse” and potam-os is river.

  • The first part of the word refers to a water horse also known as a Hippopotamus.
  • The Oxford Dictionary uses the word: hypopotamine to refer to “something very big.”
  • The word “monstr” is the Latin origin of a ‘monstrous being’ or something that is huge or terrifying and sesquippedalio derives from the Latin sesquippedalio, which means ‘measuring a foot and a half long’.
  • Phobos means morbid fear.

Causes of fear of long words

Most specific phobias, including the fear of long words, are caused by an event that is registered by parts of the brain (namely the amygdala and hippocampus) as dangerous or deadly. The body then reacts as if the same event is going to happen repeatedly.

A person with severe Hippopotomonstrosestrosis equated to phobia is literally held prisoner by feelings of anxiety and panic that they experience at the thought or vision of long words.

No one is born with this phobia. Most people have just learned it from an unpleasant episode.

In fact, many individuals do not even remember how the fear began.

Children who go to school (or in some cases, adults who work) may have experienced being laughed at or embarrassed (or found shaking, shaking, etc.) when reading or speaking long words.

The mind then continues to create the same response without any basis.

For a person suffering from Hippopotomonstrosestrosesquipariophobia, the mind develops negative images, bad film-like frames when thinking or seeing long words.

Symptoms of hypopotomonastrosestrosequiplophobia

Every individual is different and so are their symptoms of Hippopotomonstrosestrosesquippedaliophobia.

Typically, the symptoms of long words phobia can be characterized as mental, emotional or physical.

Many individuals feel extremely anxious or have a total panic attack when seeing or thinking in long words.

Physical symptoms include shaking, crying, running away, shaking, nausea, headaches, fast or racing heartbeat, shallow breathing, etc.

The person is likely to feel fear and terror; her mind creates very bad images like embarrassing herself, fainting, etc. when faced with long words.

Often the patient understands that his fear is irrational and unsupported; however, he is unable to control himself and is unable to rationalize.

Try and overcome the fear of long words in this phobia

The good news is that Hippopotomonstrosestrosesquippedaliophobia can be overcome. Drugs and medications should be the last resort, as these simply mask the anxiety symptoms that are experienced due to the phobia.

The solution to overcoming the fear of long words is primarily to remember and evaluate the factors that led to the phobia in the first place.

Therapists can also help evaluate these factors to come up with a treatment plan. The individual is then encouraged to be exposed to long words gradually: starting with just seeing the word, then progressing to thinking in long words and finally saying them.

This gradual exposure helps decrease panic until the individual is completely comfortable and can confidently handle long words.

The use of self-help methods such as deep breathing, relaxation and meditation, etc., is also recommended while treating this phobia.

Talk therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and behavior therapy are other important and effective therapies for treating hypokotomonosis equated with allophobia.

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Alexa Clark specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has experience in listening and welcoming in Individual Therapy and Couples Therapy. It meets demands such as generalized anxiety, professional, love and family conflicts, stress, depression, sexual dysfunction, grief, and adolescents from 15 years of age. Over the years, She felt the need to conduct the psychotherapy sessions with subtlety since She understands that the psychologist acts as a facilitator of self-understanding and self-acceptance, valuing each person's respect, uniqueness, and acceptance.

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