Scolionophobia (Fear of School)
Scolionophobia is an outrageous abhorrence for going to class. Though not a formal clinical diagnosis, it is frequently a sign of other anxiety disorders. Children are more susceptible to school refusal during periods of transition, such as when they begin middle school or high school. Children who have a fear of going to school frequently experience severe physical symptoms.
What is scolionophobia?
Scolionophobia differs from the typical child’s aversion to attending school. Most kids will struggle with school reluctance at some point during their educational careers. They might not be feeling well. Maybe they and a friend had a falling out. Or perhaps they simply prefer to spend the day at home. Over the years, many kids have shown this kind of resistance. Not scolionophobia, though.
A child who has scolionophobia experiences an intensity that lasts for a long time. Their aversion to going to school and their extreme fear of it are real.
Scolionophobia is a persistent phobia. When kids move from one school to another or even from one class or year group to another, it is more likely to affect them. Many children will start to feel sick just thinking about going to school.
Who is at risk of scolionophobia?
Young children develop attachments to their primary caregivers, typically their parents, when they are very young. Lots of toddlers experience separation anxiety between the ages of 18 and 24 months.
This means that they may cry, feel anxious, or even have a “tantrum” when they are separated from their caregiver (for instance, by going to a childcare provider like a nursery when their parents are at work). This stage of development is typical. Children should have a close bond with their caregivers.
Separation anxiety, though, can be more severe for some kids and doesn’t usually go away before they start school. They might then develop scolionophobia as a result of this. Because of this relationship, scolionophobia is more likely to develop in people who experience severe separation anxiety at a young age.
Similarly, parents who are regarded as “over-protective” are more likely to have a child who later develops the disorder.
Other indications consist of:
- If the kid is the only one
- If the youngster is the youngest member of the family
- If the child has or has ever had a chronic illness
- If a significant loss or bereavement has befallen the child, especially if it involves one of their parents or primary caregivers
- If either parent of the child suffers from a mental illness, particularly anxiety
In addition to the risk factors mentioned above, kids who have the following mental health issues, anxiety disorders, or are neurodiverse are more likely than other kids to develop scolionophobia:
- Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
- Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA)
- Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Social Anxiety Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Treatments for Scolionophobia
There is no treatment method created especially for scolionophobia. However, treatments for this mental illness such as talk therapy, exposure therapy, and CBT may be able to significantly lessen its symptoms. A person with scolionophobia may benefit greatly from talk therapy because it can help them develop new, powerful coping mechanisms to use when their anxiety symptoms worsen.
One of the most popular types of therapy used to help people with phobias and other anxiety disorders is dialectical behavior therapy. As this type of therapy is known to cause patients to experience extremely high levels of anxiety, it is not recommended for everyone and should only be used by a very skilled therapist.
As the name suggests, the therapist would try to gradually expose the scolionophobic patient to their fear over time. They might have to use school supplies as a result. The patient may also be instructed by the therapist to try going close to a school on their own time in an effort to confront their fear. If your child is dealing with any fears or problems, you may look for online counseling at TalktoAngel, which offers a variety of pediatric therapy and treatment options.
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