- Common onset for specific phobias begins between 7-11 years, most often starting before 10.
- Lifetime prevalence: ~5% of children and ~16% of adolescents. Girls are are twice as likely to experience a phobia than boys.
- "Phobias are different than common childhood fears. While young children generally become less afraid of things such as strangers, the bath, or the boogie monster, as they mature, children with phobias typically become more afraid as they mature. Furthermore, phobias rarely go away on their own."
- Specific phobias are characterized by excessive, uncontrollable fear of an object or situation associated with a level of anxiety that impacts normal activities
- Phobia often do not decrease over time
- Treatment focus: cognitive behavioral therapy and exposure therapy
- Risk factors for specific phobia include: having a first-degree relative with specific phobia, history of having experienced a traumatic event (including adverse childhood events), parental overprotection, abuse, and temperamental factors such as negative affectivity and behavioral inhibition
- Severity Measure for Specific Phobia-Child age 11-17 (APA Emerging Measure 2013)
- Intensive treatment of specific phobias in children and adolescents (Davis, Ollendick & Ost, 2009)