People with Sedatephobia find it extremely distressing when they face intentional stoppage of noise or sound around them. They are scared of the stillness and quietness that prevails in the situation. The fear that these people face is irrational, yet it can create a mess in the person’s daily life.
Fear of silence is growing bigger these days in this continuous noisy world. Men have become more civilized yet failed to appreciate the importance of stillness in this chaotic world.
The sounds and noise that we hear every moment has wired our brains in such a manner that when there are no sounds, we start thinking in anxious ways. Irrelevant fear starts to flood our minds about why there is dreadful silence all around.
The fear of silence is troubling and the sufferer goes through extreme terror and dread related to lack of noise.
In this elaborate think piece, we will understand the various signs of this phobia along with the causal factors and treatment procedures that can be used to reduce the phobia.
What is Sedatephobia?
Sedatephobia refers to an intense fear and panic related to lack of noise. This fear is irrational but for the sufferer, it can be dreadful and scary. People suffering from this specific phobia develop physical and psychological symptoms that are disturbing and affect the normal functioning of the individual.
It is believed that silence “speaks a thousand words.” It is also well known that relationships will last as long as they can spend time apart while still feeling as though they have had the finest talk ever.
But for many others, being quiet may be downright frightful. Sedatephobia is a name used to describe this phobia.
The name comes from the Greek roots “Sedate,” which means “quiet, asleep, or dead,” and “Phobos,” which refers to the Greek God of terror, dread, or aversion. In olden times, the phobia was relatively unheard of as there was no research or proof of existence before 50 years.
Nevertheless, today, it is a very widespread fear. Sedatephobia people visit professional hypnotists and psychotherapists frequently, and these professionals predict that this trend will continue in the years to come.
Phobias, sometimes referred to as “irrational worries,” are easy to spot because of how they make you feel. Unlike having mild concerns about doing anything, like sitting still. Sedatephobia is a type of phobia that can result in significant emotional and bodily responses.
Due to the possibility that you may have one or both of these feelings, many of these symptoms may seem similar to those of a panic or anxiety attack.
Excessive noise might make it difficult to move and give you headaches. However, the cases of Sedatephobia may experience several symptoms from quiet. Power cuts or outages can be particularly challenging for these folks since they are deprived of the comforts of technology, constant noise, music, and movies.
Their need for noise and difficulty with stillness is a learned trait, according to research conducted by Drs. Michael Bittman hails from the University of New England and Mark Sipthorp, a professor from the Australian Institute of Family Studies professor. The phobia, if ignored, can result in a full-blown panic attack with the symptoms listed below:
Silence can become so oppressive that an emotional response may result. Typical signs include:
- feeling cut off or disconnected
- Fear of passing away or fear of letting go
- difficulty paying attention
- disruptions in sleep
- An individual with Sedatephobia may occasionally experience panic in a group when there is a lull or halt in the dialogue.
- Exam season might be particularly challenging for some folks.
- For some who have a fear of quiet phobia, even attempting to fall asleep by themselves might be frightening.
- Being unable to talk or express oneself; feeling removed from reality; and considering ending one’s life.
- Crying spells
- Feels of exhaustion
Physical symptoms or bodily responses
While experiencing a panic or anxiety attack in complete silence, you could experience the following symptoms:
- tense muscles
- a quick heartbeat
- breathing difficulty
- either cold or hot flashes
- Your ears are ringing.
- mouth ache
- elevation in blood pressure
- chest constriction
- Have hot hands and a dry mouth
You may have a strong need for things like having your phone ring often, listening to music and watching television all the time. Your physical and mental health may be adversely affected by this. Sedatephobia can be brought on by traumatic childhood experiences of abuse, such as being shut in a wardrobe for long periods as punishment.
The dread of silence, like all other particular phobias, is typically brought on by a distressing or unfavorable experience in the phobic person’s life. For instance, some phobic individuals may have been neglected or mistreated by an adult. The youngster may remember the emotions he or she felt at that time.
This fear can also be triggered by hearing of a loved one’s death or any painful or bad event connected to silence. This disorder is frequently associated with other worries, such as the dread of being alone, the fear of spirits, and despair.
Phobias can be developed for two reasons: –
1. Learned Behavior
Whether it was audible or not, a lot of us experienced noise as children. This can have included growing up with a big family or simply having the TV or radio on. It could make the sound appear normal and make the silence feel inappropriate.
2. Terrible Experience
Like many other phobias, Sedatephobia might have their origins in a traumatic or negative episode. It’s conceivable that something downright scary happened when you were alone or that the silence gave your mind too much time to replay horrific events from the past.
The immediate triggers of Sedatephobia
Mentioned below are some important points of certain targeted events which may have a role in genesis of the phobia: –
- The fear of silence, like all other particular phobias, is typically brought on by a distressing or traumatic event in the person’s life.
- The youngster may have sensations that are imprinted in his memory for the rest of his life.
- This fear can also be triggered by hearing of a loved one’s death or any painful or detrimental event connected to silence.
- Many experts think that technology is partly to blame for people needing to hear things constantly.
- Some individuals find it hard to meditate or to spend a few minutes alone in a peaceful place because they are constantly drawn to their phones, their music, their televisions, or the sounds of the world around them.
- Children in particular struggle to maintain silence since they are by nature boisterous. Being quiet still perplexes them as they have to make everything they do loud and magnified.
- When youngsters don’t comply with adult requests to stop talking, they frequently get consequences.
The Etiological Factors of Sedatephobia
Here are some vital etiological/causal factors for the development of Sedatephobia
1. When your mind is still, anxious ideas flood it
When you’re busy, the work at hand is all that’s on your mind. But if you’re alone for a while, your mind could start thinking bad things. You may be thinking of a painful memory or what may go wrong in the future. In either case, battling nervous thoughts makes your search for noise and music that could drown out the bad thoughts. Face your troubled thoughts with belief rather than escaping them with additional noise in your mind.
2. Thinking about others
Since you believe you must be constantly interacting or entertaining people, you may be afraid of silence. You can feel embarrassed if you keep silent in front of people and feel the need to speak up on the spot.
There are still locations and occasions when keeping quiet in public are appropriate. Your presence, for instance, could be beneficial to a friend who is mourning.
Just a little moment of stillness allows others to speak. If you allow someone the room and spend time, they require opening up to you, you might be surprised at how they do so.
3. You like variety
The new generation is addicted to all forms of distraction, not just our phones or social media. We frequently move away from silent moments and focus on other things instead. We like to be busy and pay attention to multiple things at once. We could feel important or successful as a result. Many state that being busy doesn’t necessarily mean being effective.
4. You’ve been criticized for being timid or restrained
In our culture, people are under a lot of pressure to communicate. Speaking up against injustice and expressing our opinions are very essential. We fear being silent because we’re always under pressure to speak. More restrained people often get the wrong impression that they are shy because they are more pensive.
5. You wish to avoid dealing with your feelings
We can digest our feelings when there is silence. We could use background noise to block out these emotions if we don’t want to confront them. This is risky because masking your feelings with distractions is not equivalent to getting well. Silence is essential for processing our emotions.
6. Your concern is coming out as weak
Many people who tend to be more restrained could encounter criticism for it, as was already said. This could cause us to worry that we’ll come across as weak if we keep quiet. We avoid quiet because we’ve been taught that it shows vulnerability, yet this is wrong. In many cases, it requires more strength of character and courage to remain silent than it does to speak.
Sedatephobia is a learned trait that may be overcome. Focused attention and mindfulness meditation can be utilized for this.
1. Yoga or Meditation
Yoga is the art of learning to calm the body and mind to achieve inner peace. We engage in asana and meditation to establish a connection with the inner calmness that sustains within us. Sedatephobia refers to an intense fear and panic related to lack of noise. The quietness that can be attained by calming the ripples of the mind will help to overcome the fear related to absence of intentional sound around the person.
Our routine must change fundamentally as a result of the practice, and this causes conflict in our minds. But if we persist, ultimately our mind starts to develop a new habit. It becomes at ease in this new manner of living. We swap out the “relaxing” diversions for something that promotes our overall health and vigor.
India’s ancient sages used to dwell in the wilderness with minimal worldly goods. They removed themselves from the physical realm to communicate with the Universal Spirit. In the Himalayas, they would spend a lot of time in meditation.
They were not in a hurry to go to work or do any responsibilities. They have the option of focusing on one subject at a time. Hence, they have paved a way for us to use yoga to calm and clear our minds.
2. Focused attention in the moments of life
You might wish to start by addressing the fear of silence in order to cultivate focused attention. Go somewhere as quiet as you can find, turn everything off, and sit for a while. Observe your surroundings.
Be in the moment and let the environment around you influence you. Time spent paying attention intently is necessary for the development of mindfulness. Many advocates of mindfulness claim that it may best be fostered via sitting still and in silence. Therefore, we must first think about our connection with quiet before discussing how to concentrate on your attention skills.
Start with brief intervals of silence if you feel nervous or ill at ease. When doing the dishes, mute the television. Drive without listening to music. You may take out your pet and walk without your phone or earphones. You’ll gain from it. And gradually, as you accept silence, you’ll find solace there.
3. Practice mindfulness
The Sedatephobia person can learn to handle those times when being still is too much to bear by following these five steps.
- Fill the lungs with air by taking a deep belly breath. Exhale fully after pausing at the conclusion of the inhalation to soften the abdomen.
- Unwind your body. Drop your shoulders if they are elevated.
- Relax your grip if your hands and jaw are clenched. Relax your stomach area if it’s tight. These behaviors might elicit emotions or physical sensations. If so, it is good to feel for them.
- Keep an open mind while you observe these emotional surges and experiences which are consuming you.
- Emotions should be allowed to pass through you and try not to resist them. If you need emotional venting, crying is good. You may also laugh or fill yourself with positive memories.
- If you are in a place where you can, scream. But the idea isn’t to forcibly express your emotions. enabling their movement to create a more holistic feeling of personal wellbeing
4. Getting alone with silence
You could find that when you become accustomed to silence, you come to enjoy it. After a long day, silence could seem rejuvenating. Silence may reduce our uneasiness rather than make it worse. You may begin planning silent breaks throughout the day or even go on a silent retreat. Additionally, this could seem a little weird or even threaten family, friends, and coworkers.
5. Systematic desensitization therapy
A type of therapy called systematic desensitization therapy helps people with anxiety, phobias, post-traumatic stress disorders, and many other behavioral problems. Persons can occasionally experience great dread or anxiety as a result of specific events, people, or things.
Utilizing techniques and tools that promote calmness and relaxation in the patient, this therapy helps manage the triggers.
The therapist employs an evidence-based strategy that includes relaxation exercises and progressive exposure during systematic desensitization treatment. It helps the patient progressively get over their fear reaction to any phobia and replace it with a relaxation response.
Gradually increasing the patient’s levels of anxiety is how systematic desensitization, also known as progressive exposure treatment, is carried out by a skilled practitioner. From the least terrifying exposure, the therapist begins. There have been some proven benefits for treatment of Sedatephobia.
6. Exposure therapy
Psychologists and therapists alike employ exposure therapy, in which you are exposed to the cause of your phobia to get over your fear of silence. Always do this in a safe, secure setting in case you experience a panic or anxiety episode while receiving therapy.
You may more effectively learn how to break any negative associations you may have with being in a quiet environment with the help of this form of treatment. Additionally, it can help you develop the habit of being near fewer stimuli, which can lessen your fear of them.
7. Talk therapy
This Talk therapy is a popular form of therapy where you talk out your problems to a professional psychologist or therapist. This procedure is frequently used with cognitive behavior therapy (CBT).
In this situation, you are in a controlled setting where a therapist is assisting you in becoming more conscious of the negative thoughts you have about your phobia. It’s a practical method to learn how to deal with any tension that can arise when you experience anxiety in a peaceful setting.
Talking about your problems, in general, might just make you feel less stressed about them. Talking about the fear might help bring out any terrible memories from the past that may be the cause of it and set you on the road to recovery. You may then overcome your fear of silence from there.
8. Medication and drug therapy
The feelings you have when you are alone might occasionally be too intense and impact your daily life, even if you are in therapy. If this occurs, a doctor could suggest that you take some medicine to help you regulate your symptoms while you work to overcome your fear. If your sleep routine is being disrupted too much, your doctor may prescribe antidepressants and prescription sleeping drugs.
Medication for anxiety, as given to patients with intense panic symptoms should be used only under the guidance of a registered mental health doctor or a certified psychiatrist.
Summing Up from ‘ThePleasantMind’
You become more aware of quiet as you become used to listening. You may practice being patient while waiting for both internal and external noises to end. The majority of noises are quite brief, but occasionally an alarm may ring and the noise may seem continuous.
Even though the noise is continuous, it won’t last forever, therefore the best course of action is to surrender to the noise, which means to stop fighting it and wait instead. Watch for quiet once more when the ruckus has died down.
In the meantime, wait patiently and listen carefully to the noise. At or near ground level, where there is equality and universal acceptance, the world unites in silence.
A Psychologist with a master's degree in Psychology, a former school psychologist, and a teacher by profession Chandrani loves to live life simply and happily. She is an avid reader and a keen observer. Writing has always been a passion for her, since her school days. It helps to de-stress and keeps her mentally agile. Pursuing a career in writing was a chance occurrence when she started to pen down her thoughts and experiences for a few childcare and parenting websites. Her lovable niche includes mental health, parenting, childcare, and self-improvement. She is here to share her thoughts and experiences and enrich the lives of few if not many.