A phobia is a form of anxiety disorder in which someone has an intense fear of certain situations or objects. The fear of being in a small space or room and enable to escape also called: Claustrophobia, is one of the most common phobias.
The word claustrophobia comes from the Latin word claustrum which means “a closed-in place,” and the Greek word, phobos meaning “fear” (Paddock, 2017). A person who has claustrophobia deals with panic, anxiety and fear. It can be triggered by many situations or stimuli, including elevators, subways, airplanes, crowded room or just a small space. The onset of claustrophobia has been attributed to many factors, including a reduction in the size of the amygdala, classical conditioning, or a genetic predisposition to fear small spaces. Even though there is no diagnostic laboratory test for phobias, psychologist uses different methods to diagnose or measure the level of claustrophobia. Such as: · The Claustrophobia Scale it is a tool that has one subscale of 20 items for measuring anxiety and another 18 item scale for assessing avoidance. · The Claustrophobia Questionnaire (CLQ) is an instrument designed to evaluate the fear of suffocation and the fear of restriction (Shaffer, 2017).
The symptoms of claustrophobia and anxiety are closely related, they usually appear during childhood or adolescence. It can include physical symptoms such as: increased blood pressure and accelerated heart rate, dizziness, dry mouth, shaking, headache, panic attacks, sweating, nauseas, tension, shortness of breath and chest pain. But also can create emotional symptoms like depersonalization, overwhelm, and irrational thoughts