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10 Most Common Bug PhobiasPosted May 12, 2022

A bug phobia – also known as entomophobia – is more than just jumping when a bug surprises you. It’s an intense fear or revulsion that is accompanied by physical symptoms, as well as extreme behavior to avoid bugs… such as excessive cleaning and use of insecticide.

The most common insect phobias are:

  • Fear of spiders (Arachnophobia)
  • Fear of daddy long-legs
  • Fear of bees and wasps (Melissophobia and Spheksophobia, respectively)
  • Fear of moths
  • Fear of ants (Myrmecophobia)
  • Fear of flies or (Pteronarcophobia)
  • Fear of cockroaches (Katsaridaphobia)
  • Fear of crickets (Orthopterophobia)
  • Fear of mosquitoes
  • Fear of bed bugs

Note that spiders are arachnids – not insects – and that “Daddy Long Legs” can refer to one of three different creatures. Regardless of that, therapists and the average person typically list them with insect phobias.

Do I Have a Bug Phobia?

Disliking or being creeped out by bugs is very different than an actual phobia.  A genuine fear or phobia causes some form of anxiety… and the reaction to the source of the phobia is overwhelming and uncontrollable. Someone with a phobia will experience some combination of these symptoms:

  • Uncontrollable fear when seeing the insect
  • Anxiety, which becomes worse as the insect gets closer
  • Fear interferes with the person’s life, such as avoiding parks
  • Panic attacks
  • Fast heart rate
  • Hyperventilation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Chest tightness
  • Dizziness
  • Crying
  • Trembling
  • Muscle weakness

Is There a Phobia of Bees and Wasps?

Yes, in fact, they have distinctly different names. Fear of bees is known as melissophobia or apiphobia. Fear of wasps is spheksophobia.

In either case, they’re most often triggered by either a negative experience (such as having been stung) or when a parent imprints their own fear of bees and/or fear of wasps onto their children. It’s especially common to have a fear of bees and/or fear of wasps if you are allergic to their stings.

Can Bees Smell Fear?

Bees have an excellent sense of smell, able to detect an odor only present in parts per trillion. Whereas a person might use their sense of sight to determine that someone is afraid, bees use smell to detect fear. Specifically, they sense pheromones given off when a creature is afraid.

Why Am I Afraid of Ants?

Fear of ants – also known as myrmecophobia – is a very common phobia. While some fear of ant cases are caused by a traumatic event (such as ant bites, an attack by fire ants, etc.), psychologists believe there may be an evolutionary aspect to myrmecophobia.

Before humans were able to create secure shelters, and even afterward, ants would crawl over people while sleeping and bite them. Food contamination by ants was also common. The theory goes that our brains became programmed to be repulsed by ants. That can easily be tipped toward fear of ants.

Fox Pest Control Can Solve Your Bug Problems

Even if you don’t have a phobia, you don’t have to live with bugs and other pests. At the first sign of trouble – or for preventive treatments to avoid one – give us a call. Fox Pest Control can identify any pests, treat the problem, and provide peace of mind. To see how we can help you with your pest problems, contact us today.

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