Didaskaleinophobia

Didaskaleinophobia

‘Didasko’ means ‘school’ in greek and ‘phobia’ means ‘fear’; the ‘fear of going to school’ is termed as ‘didaskaleinophobia’ or ‘scolionophobia’. Avoidance of school is common in kids, but those kids who suffer from this phobia feel intense and persistent anxiety at the thought of attending school.

Causes:

Of the various causes some are listed below:

  1. The thought of separation from parents and home may lead to this fear of school.
  2. Stressful school environment like, excessive home work.
  3. Bullying at school.
  4. Academic pressure from teachers or parents.
  5. Kids who have learning disabilities or who are not as bright as their peers can have this fear.
  6. A fear of harsh punishment or abuse on poor performance.
  7. Witnessing or facing an unpleasant experience in school like a violent fight or physical or verbal abuse, etc.

Symptoms:

The symptoms vary with the intensity of fear. Some commonly reported symptoms are:

  1. Complete refusal to go to school.
  2. Anxiety or panic symptoms like sweating, trembling at the time of going to school.
  3. Throwing tantrums or making excuses of illness.
  4. Sleep disturbances.
  5. Profound depression which can also induce suicidal thoughts, etc.

Treatment:

As a parent one needs to be very attentive and get proper help if one notices any profound behavioral change in their kid.

Sharing feelings and making an effort to know what is happening in the kid’s school life helps in milder cases.

Cognitive behavior therapy, educational support therapy and psychotherapy of not only the child but also the parents and teachers is known to help.

Medications (anti depressants etc.)  are also available for keeping this anxiety at bay.