Erythrophobia – What Is It?

Erythrophobia - What Is ItErythrophobia is characterized as the fear of blushing, consisting of a series of symptoms and factors genetically inherent in the individual, which actually find the energy force in emotionality.

The physical manifestation of this disorder is facial hyperimia (erythema): a person suddenly blushes due to a sudden rush of blood into the dilated superficial vessels. This is mostly seen in people with white skin.

It is closely related to psychological factors combined with the fear of making a mistake, embarrassment, being defeated in achieving the goal, dissatisfaction in achieving the desired perfection. The symptom manifests itself primarily when a person is in the center of attention, is afraid to blush, at the same time feeling a rapid heartbeat, forced tension in the chest area and heat rushing to the face.

Even the slightest doubt or belief in the inability to look casual can provoke such a strong inconvenience that it will not allow the situation to be overcome easily, forcing the person to focus on trying to delay the phenomenon, initiating a process in a spiral of obsessive anxiety, which can suddenly block thoughts and generate desire to disappear or escape.

The consequences

  • Feelings of insecurity, embarrassment, and inferiority in front of others;
  • Refusal to cope with new situations that can provoke anxiety;
  • Refraining from expressing your own opinion in a team, even if you are sure that such is the most convincing;
  • Choosing a profession that does not require social contacts or contacts with colleagues: often these are professions of lower qualifications;
  • Career advancements or assignments of higher responsibility are avoided; dissatisfaction with their own inability to express and realize their professional and mental abilities;
  • the progressive development of behavioral phobia, which leads to avoidance of communication and self-isolation (social phobia);
  • in less severe cases: a feeling of grief in the huge waste of mental energy necessary to overcome situations that present a constant risk of an uncomfortable physical reaction to emotional stress;
  • in severe cases: depression, a sense of hopelessness; thoughts of suicide.

Erythrophobia treatment

Relaxation method

There are various physical and psychological techniques to relieve stress and prevent flushing, which are very beneficial for some subjects and less effective for others. We are talking about the method of self-hypnosis, yoga, autotraining, breathing techniques and progressive muscle relaxation techniques aimed at increasing self-esteem, self-confidence and at reducing unwanted physical reactions (especially heartbeat). These techniques can be applied both collectively and individually, or as an adjunct to psychotherapy.


Consultation with a psychologist is almost always recommended. For erythrophobia, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or hypnosis is mainly used. Comparison therapy, the so-called “flooding”, is quite effective for other types of phobias, is not recommended, on the contrary, it can increase the vulnerability of the patient. In general, psychotherapy does not eliminate the neurovegetative reflex of redness, rooted in time, but can facilitate coexistence with this reaction, simplifying the impact on quality life, increasing also the level of self-esteem.


The following pharmaceutical formulations are often used to counteract physical and / or psychological symptomatology, especially anxiety:

beta-blockers: Reduce heart rate by limiting the increase in heart rate during stress. In fact, the heartbeat is the main detonator of the chain reaction that leads to uncontrolled emotional stress with accompanying physical manifestations. In the best case, the attack of redness fades away and it is possible to maintain concentration of thoughts.

clonidine: This is an alpha-blocker that reduces the mobility of the vascular muscles by stabilizing them and therefore tends to limit sudden changes in the caliber of the small face vessels. Unfortunately, side effects (decreased blood pressure with dizziness, dryness in the larynx, etc.) often limit its use.

Substances that inhibit serotonin capturing – SSRI

Category: General Info

Tags: erythrophobia, healthcare, human health

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