Ornithophobia refers to the condition
of having an abnormal, extreme, and persistent fear of birds. Sufferers
may have an extreme fear of being attacked by birds - even if they rationally
agree that this is unlikely to occur.
Extreme fears (phobias) such as ornithophobia
can lead to a variety of disturbing symptoms such as: Breathlessness;
difficulty in thinking or speaking clearly; dizziness; dry mouth; fear
of dying, "going mad" or losing control; feeling sick; nausea;
palpitations, shaking; sweating profusely; or a full blown anxiety attack.
Not all sufferers are affected by all possible symptoms, and some individuals
may also have other reactions.
Even though many adult sufferers of ornithophobia
(and/or other fears/phobias) are aware that their fears are unreasonable,
many still experience severe anxiety even when just thinking about the
subject or situation they fear. However, phobias such as ornithophobia
are a relatively common form of anxiety disorder and may be treated conventionally
using cognitive behavioral therapy including exposure and fear reduction
techniques. Drugs may also be offered, typically anti-anxiety or anti-depressants
- particularly during the early stages of treatment. Other forms of treatment
offered may include hypnotherapy, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) or
other similar therapies.