What is Plutophobia?

Plutophobia is the fear of wealth. People suffering from this would not want any money, while more severe sufferers would live away from their families and society.

Some people are afraid of the ramifications of real wealth. They think money will create new problems in their lives and change their personalities for the worse. Certain religions also frown upon the accumulation of material goods.

Plutophobia is also related to Chrometophobia or Chrematophobia (fear of money).

The origin comes from Pluto, who was the Roman God of Wealth and the word 'phobia' comes from the Greek word ‘phóbos’ meaning 'fear.'

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Symptoms of Plutophobia

  • Extreme Anxiety, Dread

  • Shortness of Breath
  • Rapid Breathing
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Excessive Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Dry Mouth
  • Confusion / Inability to Articulate Clearly
  • Lack of Focus
  • Irritability
  • Shaking
  • Feelings of Powerlessness
  • Obsession with the Subject of the Phobia
  • Fear or Feelings of Losing Control
  • Avoidance Behavior
  • Headaches

Learn more about phobia symptoms ›

Causes of Plutophobia

Plutophobia is a specific (or “isolated”) phobia, centered on non-social key factors. Isolated phobias tend to have some previous trauma (often in childhood and often physically injurious) as a root cause; a fear of bees may stem from an injury in childhood, for instance.

Upbringing can also play a role, such as parental warnings about a direct threat (such as “snakes can bite and kill you”) which is especially notable in cases where a threat is more imminent. (An allergy to bees or peanut butter, for instance, would naturally reinforce a real medical concern.)

It is thought that genetics and hereditary factors may play a role in specific phobias, especially those related to a danger of injury. (A primal “fight or flight” reflex may be more easily triggered in those with a genetic predisposition, for instance.)

By contrast, social phobias (like a fear of body odor or touch) are less well-understood, are driven by social anxiety, and are broadly labeled as “social anxiety disorder”.

In all kinds of phobias, external experiences and / or reports can further reinforce or develop the fear, such as seeing a family member or friend who is affected. In extreme cases, indirect exposures can be as remote as overhearing a reference in conversation, seeing something in the news, on TV, or in the movies.

Plutophobia, like most phobias, stems from a subconscious overprotection mechanism, and as with many phobias can also be rooted in an unresolved emotional conflict.

Some religions frown upon the idea of riches and worldly possessions. They feel that it is sinful to indulge in such things and by sending the message that wealth is barrier to goodness and to higher consciousness, some religions may trigger Plutophobia.

Some people have experienced great reversals of fortune during their lifetimes. They may have had a period of great wealth, interspersed with hard times. For them, wealth can be a harbinger of grim times to come.

Also, this fear can often be triggered due to the fear of losing money.

Learn more about the causes of phobias ›

Treatments for Plutophobia

  • Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)

  • Habit Strategies To Relax
  • Cognitive Therapy (CT)
  • In Vivo Exposure
  • Response Prevention
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Group Therapy
  • Psychotherapy
  • Energy Psychology
  • Medication
  • Meditation

Learn more about phobia treatments ›

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