Demophobia: What is it? Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

It is an exaggerated or irrational fear of crowds; the person is terrified by the congestion of people and thinks he is in danger.

A person does not understand that a crowd of people will not harm him, but in his ideas, this is a terrible and uncontrollable force that can crush him.

Unfortunately, the modern way of life causes chaos in transportation, traffic jams, and long journeys. On television, they show bloody terrorist attacks, mass robberies, causing the human psyche to spiral out of control, and as a result, a phobia develops.

The fear of crowds or chemophobia consists of an irrational fear of large crowds and gatherings of people. Demophobia is a general social phobia that, as is known, affects many people today. This occurs more in women than in men.

Each case of chemophobia is different and depends on the thoughts and images that a person associates with large crowds. This is mainly due to the different thought patterns of each phobia.

Therefore, there is no reason to fear crowds, but most experts blame genetics, biochemical disorders, stressful or traumatic life events, and inaccurate beliefs for fear of crowds.

A person with such a phobia experiences an obsessive and uncontrollable fear of the crowd; it is unbearable to be there where many people, and he cannot get rid of the obsession.


Irrational fear can arise even when a person observes the crowd from the side, not being at its epicenter. For example, it could be a musical concert, a rally, a vacation in the city, etc.

The fear of the crowd makes the person realize that this is just an ordinary social event, interesting to him and not threatening, but he cannot join the crowd.

He cannot control or overcome his fear. He will try to stay as far away from the crowd as possible, and he will certainly never become a participant in the carnival or the football game in the stadium since he does not have the willpower to overcome the fear of the people.

A germophobic person can present panic episodes in places where they go daily, such as:

  • Supermarkets, pharmacies, shops, squares, and public places.
  • On trains, buses, or planes.
  • On the bridges.
  • In an elevator.
  • There is no easy way out in cinemas, theaters, or restaurants.

Causes of chemophobia

Fear does not simply develop without cause. There is always a specific reason. In some cases, it occurs in childhood when the child is in the stage of forming his personal space.

If parents constantly limit it, then chemophobia can develop later. When a child grows up, he has unpleasant feelings associated with a group of people.

Various nervous disorders and mental illnesses can accompany Demophobia. Some do not tolerate other people’s touches or unpleasant odors.

It is essential to understand that each person has their distance. When a person establishes it clearly, they feel entirely secure. However, demophobics do not feel this distance, so these people perceive it too sensitively.

Often when a person has to communicate with many people a day, he runs away from everyone because he wants to be alone, and if timely measures are not taken, the tension will constantly increase.

According to psychologists, many people’s phobias, unlike many other phobias, can originate not only in childhood, when the subconscious has not yet been formed to the end but also at a reasonably mature age.

A person could have an unpleasant situation with the crowd: they could suffer physical or material aggression.

For example, you could be trampled on by a crowd or have your phone stolen – in these cases, justified fear is even harder to overcome.


A person who suffers from excessive fear of crowds believes that the masses are too noisy.

In general, shy people or people who cannot desensitize themselves to the emotions provoked by crowds are more likely to suffer from dentophobia.

Demophobes have different internal representations of their fear. Naturally, the symptoms presented are different for each patient.

These symptoms and signs are described as physical, mental, or emotional.

The main sign is clear; it is the phobia of the street, the reluctance to leave the house, the effort to avoid places with many people, and the seclusion.

The physical signs are similar to those of other phobic fears, some of them increasing the level of serotonin.

These symptoms are also included:

  • Mild anxiety can turn into a panic attack at the thought of a large crowd.
  • A demophobic person will probably go to great lengths to avoid and escape crowds.
  • You cannot function normally in front of them.
  • You cannot distinguish between reality and unreality.
  • It has a sensation in the stomach, nausea, and gastrointestinal disorders.
  • Tremors or excessive sweating are also possible.
  • You have an increased heart rate, changes in blood pressure, feel unable to breathe, and suffocate, and these are some of the physical symptoms of this phobia.
  • Many homophobic people are sure they will be crowded or crushed by crowds if they are present at these concentrations.
  • Many in the crowd are incredibly uncomfortable because people invade their personal space.
  • They do not like strangers touching them, nor the smells that come from them.
  • They fear that in the crowd, they may be robbed, that objects will be taken from their pockets or purse.

In principle, the probability of this happening is there, and the feeling of rational fear is justified, but experiencing panic in such situations and developing anxiety symptoms is entirely abnormal.

The symptomatology will manifest itself constantly, so you must learn to combat it.

Most of the time, extreme avoidance measures and suffering from anxiety or a panic attack are protective reactions.

It usually helps to feel completely safe when the homophobic is accompanied by a very receptive person or with whom he feels comfortable and protected.

It is possible to suspect a phobia when someone refuses to visit the market, a store, crowded places, etc.

This indicates that you are afraid or predisposed to it because you fear being in these public places where you feel that an escape may be difficult or impossible.

Treatment of chemophobia

This can significantly affect the daily life of the homophobic. In many cases, treatment can work well. Treatment options include medications and using a selective serotonin inhibitor.

If a phobia in front of crowds is expressed gently, the person can take all his willpower and leave the place in silence, even if he feels terrified.

In any situation, no matter how scary, such a patient can overcome fear, withdraw, and calm down. As a rule, with chemophobia, a person does not perceive everything individually; for him, people are a terrible gray mass. Your doctor will usually treat chemophobia with therapy, medication, or a combination.

When prescribed sedatives, the person calms down and has many positive emotions, making therapies easier and recovering quickly.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is used because it relieves anxiety. You can also do some things at home to make yourself feel better.

The therapist can teach new ways of thinking or deal with situations that cause panic. These new ways will help you be less fearful.

Relaxation and breathing exercises can also be learned. Sometimes the therapist may offer exposure therapy, in which he tries to do some things that bother him, exposing the patient to these adverse factors slowly.

The main goal of the therapist is to do everything possible for a person to assess the situation and lose fear.


  1. Psychologists recommend looking for potential danger from the people around you. After observing the surroundings, you will see that everyone is busy with their thoughts and activities and that they are there for the same reason and are just other passersby.
  2. A good solution in this time of panic is to hear the voice of a loved one who can be called. This will calm you down, distract you, and give you strength and confidence.
  3. A person in such a state of anxiety does not distinguish anyone in the crowd; for him, it is just a gray mass without faces. It is recommended to speak to someone in the crowd, ask for the time, and ask any questions or comments.
  4. Try at this moment to feel yourself, your body, and control your breathing. Breathing deeply will help you relax, organize your thoughts, and calm yourself.