The intense fear of kissing is known as Philemaphobia, which is derived from the Greek words ‘Philema’, which means kissing, and ‘Phobos,’ which means ‘fear or dread.’ 

Even the concept of kissing is too much for some people. Seeing people kiss on TV or in movies might cause the patient to feel disgusted or have a full-fledged panic attack.

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Get matched with a therapist that can help you with your phobia.

Kissing is a common and accepted way of welcoming someone and even expressing affection in various cultures. A kiss is a romantic gesture, especially when it is exchanged between willing persons seeking sexual closeness or expressing sentiments of love.

However, there are some individuals who acquire an unreasonable phobia of kissing. Some people are merely terrified of the first kiss; others are afraid of falling short of their partner’s expectations. 

While this fear may not affect one’s daily life, it might have a negative impact on one’s personal and social connections. Philemaphobia is linked to other phobias including the fear of closeness, sexual intercourse, or pathogens, among others.

Philemaphobia Therapy Price Comparison

The price of in-person therapy ranges from $100 to $200 per session. However, virtual therapy such as BetterHelp’s prices is far more reasonable.

Therapists no longer have to drive to work, and in certain situations, they do not even need to rent office space. 

BetterHelp offers a free 7 days trial for those individuals who are interested in seeking online Philemaphobia therapy.

Once the free trial ends you can sign up for either their weekly plan or monthly plan. The weekly plan price ranges from $60 to $90 weekly which includes 1 live session weekly for 30 to 45 minutes.

Whereas, their monthly cost ranges from $240 to $360 consisting of 4 monthly live sessions for 30 to 45 minutes. 

In-Person Therapy BetterHelp Therapy
$100 to $200 per session

$60 to $90 weekly

( 1 live session weekly)

 

$240 to $360 monthly 

Get 10% off on BetterHelp.com

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Consequences of Not Dealing With Philemaphobia Phobias

Philemaphobia is the fear of kissing. If you have a phobia, you may have a strong sense of fear or panic while confronting the source of your fear.

Around 19 million Americans suffer from a phobia that interferes with their daily life in some way. If you have a Philemaphobia phobia or any other phobia that is preventing you from living your best life, it is important to seek help. 

The consequences of not dealing with a phobia might range from irritating to extreme discomfort. People with phobias are aware that their fear is unjustified, yet they are unable to change it. Work, education, and personal relationships can all be hampered by such fears.

Causes of Philemaphobia

Cultural or religious views are frequently the source of Philemaphobia. Some cases of kissing phobia can be traced back to a history of sexual trauma. Others may avoid kissing because they are frightened of being emotionally or sexually attached to the person they are kissing. 

On the other hand, Philemaphobia might also be triggered by a history of unsuccessful relationships. Because of hygiene or sanitation difficulties like as foul breath, one may be worried about revolting or turning off one’s partner. 

The fear of kissing in this scenario might stem from a negative body image or low self-esteem. Kissing may be unappealing to those who have an overwhelming fear of germs, sickness, or illness.

Looking for a specialist?
Get matched with a therapist that can help you with your phobia.

To support the work of the people working on TherapyHunter.com, we may receive compensation if you sign up for online counseling through the links provided.

Symptoms of Philemaphobia

Philemaphobia symptoms vary depending on the amount of fear a person has. At the mere notion or sight of kissing, some people have a full-fledged panic attack, which includes the following symptoms:

Anxiety Symptoms

Someone who has obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) may be very obsessed with germs, cleanliness, and general hygiene, in addition to having uncontrollable, repeating thoughts. 

Philemaphobia, or a severe fear of kissing, can develop in persons who believe they do not kiss properly and are terrified of what others will think of them if they do. They are anxious and uncomfortable in such circumstances that may lead to anxiety attack, which is why they avoid them.

Furthermore, kissing fear may wreak havoc on interpersonal relationships, as it makes people hesitant to form close or romantic connections with others and limits social contact.

Depression Symptoms

If people avoid relationships because they are afraid of kissing, it can lead to isolation and depression. 

People may want to be in a close love relationship but avoid interacting with others because they are afraid of the personal components of a relationship, such as kissing, caressing, or having sex. 

Moreover, Philemaphobia can also make it difficult to operate in everyday life. If individuals are afraid of being kissed or encountering others who are kissing, they may find it difficult to work, go to school, or go out socially.

Physical Symptoms

Symptoms of emotional and physical distress are also frequent for individuals who suffer from Philemaphobia. 

When you think about kissing, you may experience fear or panic. You may want to avoid any circumstance that involves kissing in some instances.

Philemaphobia Treatment

To overcome a Philemaphobia an individual must first identify the source of the anxiety. If you are afraid of germs or becoming sick, you may learn more about them or try to increase your immunity. Following are the treatment for Philemaphobia:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Philemaphobia has a detrimental impact on the sufferer’s life, particularly their interpersonal interactions. Fortunately, psychological counseling can help you overcome this illness.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on changes in mental processes and behaviors and has shown to be the most successful kind of psychotherapy for this disorder, as it has been for any phobia, maladaptive and dysfunctional behaviors that the person engages in. 

CBT combines cognitive therapy approaches with behavioral treatments and may involve cognitive restructuring, social skills training, problem-solving training, relaxation techniques, and exposure techniques, among other things. 

This strategy also encourages the patient to develop coping skills that will be beneficial when they are in a scenario that causes them to worry or pain.

Furthermore, CBT alters the underlying negative ideas that cause fearful sensations. Working with a therapist, you may uncover the anxiety-inducing negative beliefs you have about kissing and strive to replace them with more positive, adaptive ones. 

Treatment for phobias like Philemaphobia usually works successfully. CBT has been shown to be extremely successful in reducing the symptoms of certain phobias when used alone or in combination with other treatments in studies.  

Virtual therapy like BetterHelp has the advantage of being less stressful than traditional treatment. And, in the instance of a phobia of kissing, it allows people to get exposure to the activity without really doing it.

Exposure Therapy

Exposure therapy is one component that can aid in the treatment of phobias. This method entails gradually exposing yourself to the thing you’re afraid of. You will also practise relaxing methods at the same time. 

Medication

Anti-anxiety or antidepressant medicines may be beneficial in some circumstances. These drugs can assist with some of the more severe sensations of dread that you may be experiencing.

If you have a co-occurring illness, such as another anxiety disorder or depression, they may be effective. Because fear of kissing is frequently caused by a lack of experience or concerns about performance, psychoeducation may be beneficial in avoiding or lowering anxiety. 

fear of kissing

BetterHelp: A Cost-Effective Therapy

At some time in their life, most people experience anxiety or reluctance to intimacy or falling in love. However, if your Philemaphobia is giving you substantial anxiety, it might become a problem. Treatment is available if this is the situation for you.

The most common treatment for Philemaphobia is therapy or counseling which BetterHelp.com offers. Working with a BetterHelp mental health expert is a great option. They will look at your previous relationships to see what is triggering your fear of kissing. 

They may assign you relaxation exercises or other types of therapeutic homework to help you feel more at ease when it comes to dating and relationships.

On the other hand, CBT may be used by therapists to assist you in recognizing the mental patterns and behaviors that lead to your anxiety about being in a relationship.

They may also apply counterconditioning or systematic desensitization treatment. The therapist will gradually expose you to the thought of kissing in order to desensitize you to your fear. 

If you are ready to work with someone, start by filling out the sign-up form of BetterHelp. Additionally, by filling out this form BetterHelp will assign a therapist who fits your requirements. 

You will receive therapy in the comfort of your home. BetterHelp offer two therapy plans:

Weekly Plan: $60 to $90 for 1 live weekly session ranging from 30 minutes to 45 minutes.

Monthly Plan: $240 to $360 for 4 live monthly sessions ranging from 30 minutes to 45 minutes. 

Final Thoughts

Phobias are anxiety disorders in which persons who suffer from them experience intense fear when they come into touch with the phobic

stimuli, causing them significant distress and prompting them to want to avoid it. 

If your Philemaphobia is on the milder end of the scale, you may be able to overcome it by rewiring your thoughts, experiences, and expectations about kissing, as well as by increasing your exposure to the activity. 

You can also educate yourself and rationalize your fear by talking about it with your partner or even to yourself; genuine self-talk always helps. Furthermore, seeking therapy is also a great option. 

BetterHelp offers you a wide range of therapists to choose from and allows you to take therapy from the comfort of your own home.

Josiane Camilleri

Josiane Camilleri

Professor

Writer for Therapy Hunter as well as psychology
professor at Malta University.

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