VIDEO: Reporter faces fear of roaches on live TV

Monday, October 31, 2016
Foti Kallergis faces his fears
Foti Kallergis got up close and personal with some hissing cockroaches at the Houston Zoo

HOUSTON -- There are some very real but very strange phobias out there.

Many common fears are related to animals and insects.

VIDEO: Balloons? A viewer says they're her worse nightmare

One viewer told Eyewitness News that she is deathly afraid of balloons

Reporter Foti Kallergis says he is afraid of roaches, so it's fitting we found him this morning at the bug house at the Houston Zoo.

For many others, phobias are downright bizarre. Clowns, bugs and balloons, our viewers say, are among their top fears.

One woman said the sight or sound of balloons makes her physically ill.

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Specific phobias are distinguished by an intense and "irrational fear of something that poses little or no actual danger" and limited to a very specific thing or situation.

"I get this tingling sensation through my body and my hands sweat, my feet," she says.

But, a treatment known as immersion therapy is said to help the perpetually afraid overcome the things that strike them with fear.

Therapists expose patients to the object of their fear after undergoing discussions about the things that make their pulse quicken.

They are taught a relaxation exercise to use whenever they find themselves in situations with those fears.

Foti Kallergis faced his own phobia by allowing zoo employees to place hissing cockroaches on his body during this segment.

Not sure how effective the treatment was, but needless to say, it was pretty funny to watch.