from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A persistent, abnormal, and irrational fear of a specific thing or situation that compels one to avoid it, despite the awareness and reassurance that it is not dangerous.
- n. A strong fear, dislike, or aversion.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. An irrational or obsessive fear or anxiety, usually of or about something particular.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Any morbid uncontrollable dread or fear.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an anxiety disorder characterized by extreme and irrational fear of simple things or social situations
If the patient does not recognize the fear as excessive or unreasonable, it becomes very difficult to actually prove that the fear is indeed excessive and unreasonable and thus the term "phobia" is not applicable.
The term phobia being an irrational fear of something, nobody is afraid of homosexuals and nobody fears contracting homosexuality
When neologisms with the word "phobia" are formed, this requirement should be considered.
As any freshman psych student can tell you, a phobia is ‘an irrational fear.’
This is quite important since not every fear is automatically a "phobia"; the psychiatric term "phobia" is reserved for cases when the fear is excessive or unreasonable.
Though we have a certain phobia of driving over bridges (between the height and the claustrophobia, it's just not our favorite thing), we still adore them and think they're beautiful creations.
Though we have a certain phobia of driving over bridges (between the height and the claustrophobia, it's just not our favorite thing), we still adore ...
Full-blown dental phobia is a more serious condition in which a person avoids the dentist at all costs.
For anyone earning a living, the financial toll of this phobia is incalculable.
For whatever reason -- whether it's cultural, societal, or just plain phobia -- they hate an entire class of people.