Can you be afraid of the moon?

If you’ve never heard of a supermoon, it is the moment when the Earth’s natural satellite appears in the night sky that’s bigger and brighter than normal. The supermoon, eclipses, the 'red moon'... our satellite fascinates us and we love to watch it at night. However, it is not a spectacle for all audiences, because a minority of the population can have a hard time: those who suffer from the so-called selenophobia or persistent and unwarranted fear of the moon.

As Mar Gómez, a meteorologist from Eltiempo.es, has stated, these types of psychological disorders "do not understand if something is more or less beautiful, and what is very striking for some, for others causes anxiety". In this case, panic increases on full moon days, and can manifest itself with physical symptoms such as sweating and palpitations. Those affected become upset just by hearing the word "moon" or seeing a simple photo of it, and avoid leaving home when the sun goes down. They can even close their shutters to prevent the reflection of it, especially on full moon nights.

Selenophobia usually develops around the age of five, sometimes as a sequel to a traumatic episode related to our satellite or because some relative has suffered from it. If you have it, or if you know someone who has it, it is best to put yourself in the hands of a specialist, because beyond the mere anecdote, this phobia can have a serious impact on the quality of life of the sufferer.

The techniques of progressive exposure - for example, gradually go out on the street at night and begin to observe it when it shines little and cognitive therapy - gradually convince the affected person of the irrational of his fear with objective information - are the most used methods to overcome this phobia.

Continue reading