People with germaphobia or germophobia have a pathological fear of germs. Psychologists may also use the term mysophobia, a fear of germs and contamination. The latter term covers more than just germs, encompassing anything the individual believes is unclean. Those with germaphobia often go to extreme lengths to avoid contamination, which can take a significant toll on their health.
Germaphobia has symptoms similar to those of other phobias. These symptoms usually manifest whenever a person fears exposure to germs, though they can also appear when one is simply thinking about germs. It is common for people with the condition to experience anxiety, fear, and nervousness. They may also have obsessive thoughts about contracting illnesses. Many individuals describe feeling powerless to combat their fears, despite recognizing them as extreme or irrational.
Receive updates on the latest news and alerts straight to your inbox.
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.