Germophobia Vs. Healthy Precautions Against Germs

Germophobia, also known as mysophobia, verminophobia, and bacillophobia, is a pathological fear of germs and bacteria. Individuals with germophobia feel compelled to excessively wash their hands and obsessively take precautions against contamination. Germophobia is most commonly associated with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and individuals with this anxiety disorder have a compulsion to carry out specific routines. However, patients with germophobia do not necessarily have OCD. While germophobia is an example of germs putting limitations on activities, it is important to take healthy precautions against germs without going to extreme measures. There is, however, a fine line between germophobia and following good hygiene practices. How does one determine whether simple cleanliness or germophobia is at play? Learn about the differences now.

Getting Vaccinations And Check Ups


Getting vaccinations and regular check-ups is an example of taking healthy precautions against germs. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), vaccines are always tested to ensure they are as safe and effective as possible for children to receive when recommended, for adults to receive when needed for boosters or specific purposes. When a child visits the doctor for a check-up, the physician will recommend the appropriate immunizations based on the schedule published by the CDC. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) meets three times a year to discuss vaccine recommendations. The recommendations are based on the following: how safe and effective the vaccine is at any given age; the severity of the disease the vaccine prevents; how many individuals get the disease when there is no vaccine; and how effective the vaccine is. In addition to administering vaccines, getting routine check-ups is a healthy precaution against illness. This is not an example of germophobia, provided the check-ups don’t become constant.

Learn more about the differences between healthy precautions and germophobia now.