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FEARS AND PHOBIAS YOU SHOULD BEWARE OF...

FEAR OF FOOD: Many children have been in the news about phobias so severe they could not eat. Some children simply fear solid food, while others will only eat one thing. If left unchecked this could impact on their adult lives and be much more difficult to detect.

FEAR OF SCHOOL: It's no joke. This can stem from something specific like bullying, fear of exams or lack of confidence to something as simple as the bathroom at the school or a certain area of the playground and the child has generalised it to mean the whole school.

Those worse affected can have their education disrupted, friendships affected and have a negative impact on family life.

FEAR OF VOMITING: Known as emetophobia, this is another phobia that can really affect their lives. They might refuse to eat certain things, restrict their food intake or be afraid to go in public places after they have eaten.

FEAR OF THE DENTIST: In 2005 eight-year-old Sophie Waller died of starvation because she was so terrified of the dentist. Her parents say it started when she was four and the dentist accidentally cut her tongue during a routine visit. Four years later the fear hadn't gone, so when she discovered she had to go back for treatment to a cracked tooth, she refused to eat for three days.

She was taken to hospital to have the cracked tooth (and all eight of her remaining baby teeth removed) but afterwards she refused to open her mouth to even speak and had to be fed through a tube. Two weeks after leaving hospital she died from starvation and dehydration..

NATURAL/USUAL CHILDHOOD FEARS AGE 0-2: Loud noises, strangers, separation from parent, large objects AGE 3-6: Imaginary figures (ghosts, monsters etc), the dark, noises, sleeping alone, thunder AGE 7-16: Physical injury, health, school performance, death, thunderstorms, floods..
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jun 23, 2009
Words:309
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