Halloween is just around the corner, and each year it seems to bring an increasing number of little ghosts, ghouls and witches to the door (as well as some not so little ones!). For most people, it is little more than an excuse for kids to dress up and collect some sweets, or an excuse for adults to curl up and watch a scary DVD. However, this seemingly innocuous American import can stir up some pretty powerful phobias.
The overwhelming and irrational fear of Halloween itself is called Samhainophobia, but Halloween can also affect those with related phobias, such as the fear of spiders (arachnophobia), the dark (nyctophobia), cats (ailurophobia), witches (wiccaphobia), ghosts (phasmophobia), or cemetaries (coimetrophobia) – to name but a few!
With Halloween activities being increasingly popular in the UK, perhaps Samhainphobia will become more prevalent. Meantime, here are ten top tips for a safe and fun Halloween: