Acrophobia Essay


University of Phoenix
July 12, 2015

The human anatomy is made up on many complex functions, but the most intriguing in various
opinions is the mind. The mind has a part of the brain located in the amygdala. The
amygdala is a structure located deep in the anterior inferior temporal lobe of the brain.
The amygdala receives projections mostly from the sensory regions of the thalamus and the
cortex, but also from several other structures such as the hippocampus and the prefrontal
cortex (thebarin.mcgill, 2006). This part of the brain and its associates are known to
process fear and panic. There are a multitude of fears that in much opinion are very scary
from one but may not be to another. The way many process those fears are completely
different just as they are to have them. President Franklin Roosevelt was famous for many
acts but even without a degree in psychology he was accurate when saying “The only thing
we have to fear is fear itself.”

There are five basic fears every human has embedded in them from birth, and they are
extinction, mutilation, loss of Autonomy, separation, and Ego-Death. (Dr. Karl Albrecht,
1996) Even though they are all shared I believe there are many fears that contain all 5 in
its tragedy and one of those are fear of heights. The fear of heights is known as

Acrophobia. Acrophobia is a debilitating anxiety disorder that affects nearly 1 in every
20 adults ( The word is derived from the Greek word “Acron” meaning heights
and “phobos” meaning fear. To put in context there are about three hundred and nineteen
million people in the United States alone. That means that almost sixteen million people
have this debilitating phobia which possess the natural five fears that a person can

Classical conditioning can be done to help people achieve great lengths when it comes to a
phobia. For example a study can be formed by having a person simulate being on a stair and
gradually move there way on to the top of a sky scraper. With that a study can be formed
to gather data to see how a person with the phobia will react to such a situation. With
Unconditioned Stimulus a person can just be hauled up to the top to gather the immediate
data. Even though this is a practice that I myself do not agree with, I understand that
many forms have to be taken to help find the cause or root of an issue such as Acrophobia.
The unconditioned response is behavior that occurs naturally due to a given stimulus. The
situation that surrounds someone will get them to have or not have a reaction based on the
circumstance around them. While conditioned responses would be the person reacting to the
situation around with another individual involved. Conditioned response only when someone
has come to associate that stimulus with another.

Acrophobia generally affects the recreational activities one can enjoy. However, in some
extreme cases, the phobia can affect one’s day to day life. For example: driving on
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