Do you have a fear of flashing lights?
What is Selaphobia?
Selaphobia – derived from the Greek word selas, meaning “light” – is the fear of flashing lights.
It is a branch of photophobia (fear of light) and Photaugiaphobia or Photaugiophobia or Photoaugliaphobia (which are all the fear of glaring lights).
What are the Causes?
The phobia often occurs because of negative experiences involving flashing lights, like in urban legends where flashing car lights lead to a deadly chase. Another cause is seeing flashing lights too often.
Epileptics are more prone to suffering this phobia, while migraine sufferers are more prone to panic attacks. Selaphobes will not drive at night or go to dance clubs. When in a common place like their homes, they keep their eyes closed while in a lighted room, or keep the lights turned off.
It is generally accepted that phobias arise from a combination of external events (i.e. traumatic events) and internal predispositions (i.e. heredity or genetics). Many specific phobias can be traced back to a specific triggering event, usually a traumatic experience at an early age.
Social phobias and agoraphobia have more complex causes that are not entirely known at this time. It is believed that heredity, genetics, and brain chemistry combine with life-experiences to play a major role in the development of phobias.
What are the Symptoms?
As with any phobia, the symptoms vary person-to-person depending on their level of fear. The symptoms typically include:
Extreme anxiety, dread and anything associated with panic such as shortness of breath, rapid breathing, irregular heartbeat, sweating, excessive sweating, nausea, dry mouth, nausea, inability to articulate words or sentences, dry mouth and shaking.
Can I Take Medicine?
Medicine can be prescribed, but note that these medications can have side effects and/or severe withdrawal systems. It is also important to note that medicines do not cure phobias; at best they only temporarily suppress the systems. However, there are treatments for phobias, which include counseling, hypnotherapy, psychotherapy, and neuro-linguistic programming.