A fear of snakes is one of humanity's most common and intense phobias, with one in three adults worldwide suffering from 'ophidiophobia'.Experts have previously suggested the response is an innate survival mechanism to protect us from the potentially deadly reptiles.Monkeys have also been shown to be more interested in snakes, suggesting the reptiles are somehow special, but researchers aren't sure why.Rather than this fear being hard-wired, Dr Lo Bue claims that a fear of snakes or spiders is culturally conditioned.Last year, more than 4,000 people took advantage of that program.That number grew so high, private contractors have now been hired to provide the service. At the Mackinac Straits Bridge in Michigan, a five-mile suspension span that’s the third-longest bridge in the country, about 1,200 people take advantage of a similar, free driving service to cross that bridge.
This comes from Medicine Net.com: Sufferers of this phobia experience undue anxiety even though they realize their fear is irrational.In the study, a team of researchers used sudden bursts of light as a 'startle probe' to test the infants' responses.The children watched videos of snakes and elephants that were coupled with either happy or fearful voices.It facilitates fear learning.'Previous research has shown that humans are born with two fears - of heights and of loud noises - and that most others are formed within six years.Big bridge: The Chesapeake Bay Bridge, which stretches for four miles, can be a scary place for someone with gephyrophobia, the fear of crossing bridges.That bridge is four miles long and for years, Maryland’s Transportation Authority had a special program for gephyrophobic drivers.With call ahead, they could be met at the bridge by a bridge driver who would hop in their car and drive it over the bridge.These responses suggest the infants were not scared by the snakes before the probe was activated.The clip shows young children fearlessly playing with snakes, with seemingly no concern for the danger the animals might pose."Before this happened, people who were anxious about it might have come in to work on their fear of bridges and tunnels because it was an irrational fear," said Jean Ratner, who runs the Center for Travel Anxiety in Bethesda, Md. "But with that bridge collapsing, their fears seem justified.