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Are you afraid of dirt? Maybe you suffer from acathartophobia


Acatartophobia is one of the irrational fears and particularly concerns dirt. Let's find out why it occurs and how to treat it.

When it comes to phobias, the list is really long. Suffering from it is in fact less rare than one thinks.
One of the less known but rather problematic ones is, for example, acathartophobia or the fear of dirt. Based on its size it can in fact make life more difficult, especially if you find yourself moving often between home and workplace or travelling.
But why does one suffer from this particular phobia? Let's find out the causes and strategies to overcome it effectively.

What are the causes and symptoms of acatarthophobia

Also known as rupophobia, acatartophobia is a fear of germs and dirt. This phobia leads to repeated actions and manic traits which usually consist in the constant cleaning of oneself and of the surrounding environment. Added to this is a real obsession with cleaning that you always try to do both at home and wherever you are and feel threatened.


For this reason, suffering from it leads to problems in everyday life and, obviously, in social relationships. Going to the causes, these are often difficult to identify. They can, however, be linked to problems regarding an overly rigid education, painful moments related to the past and a general sense of dissatisfaction with one's life. Sometimes even traumatic events that occurred in a dirty environment or while not feeling clean can trigger this phobia.

To discover the actual causes, the intervention of the psychotherapist is generally necessary, which will be based on some symptoms and on the conversation with the patient. Among the most common, however, there are:

– Need to always clean everything
– Need to wash constantly (especially the hands)
– Nausea
– Shortness of breath
– Vomit
– Need to go to the bathroom
Cold sweat
– Tremors
Stress dermatitis

The same occur whenever the person suffering from acathartophobia believes he is in front of something dirty and is unable to clean himself or clean the surrounding environment as he would like.

How to deal with and overcome this phobia

As already mentioned, this particular phobia can be resolved with the help of psychotherapy and especially cognitive-behavioral therapy. Through this particular path, the patient can in fact learn to face through exercises to overcome fear and all by eliminating the negative thoughts usually connected to the sight of dirt or to the thought of its presence. In more serious cases, pharmacological therapy may also be useful, which will be chosen by the doctor and always included in a psychotherapy course.

By working well on yourself and looking for the origins of the fear of germs and dirt, it is possible to gradually resolve this phobia, while improving your relationships and obtaining an easier social life. The important thing is to start recognizing the problem and not be afraid to ask for help. Only in this way will it be possible to take the first steps towards a definitely better quality of life.

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