The Altoscope

1st October 2021

When I started this page all those years ago I was secretly hoping that someone would come up with a magical solution. Hypnotherapy of course is a solution, but requires a skilled therapist, and can be quite costly. Personally I have neither the time nor the money to seek such help on a phobia which doesn't affect my daily life.

I don't know what I was hoping others to do for me, but the best suggestions were baseball caps, or floppy brimmed hats. These did not work for me as the didn't restrict the field of view enough, not least doing nothing to obscure the reflection of a highly polished floor.

Then a few years back I had an epiphany... a visor, wearable head gear which would fit around the eyes. In my head I could see Geordi La Forge from Star Trek, The Next Generation. Needless to say, despite spending a couple of hours on it, my mark one looked more like I'd strapped a cereal box to my head. Worse still, whilst it did stay on my head fairly securely (as long as I didn't jump up and down) it didn't actually perform the task I wanted from it. The visor would have needed to have protruded another six inches from my face for any chance of that to happen. I looked ridiculous enough.

A year or so later I found the inspiration to make a mark two. I learned from my mistakes and did some math before starting construction. This one still looked like something weird you might wear during Hallowe'en, but using papier-mache, gloss paint, and creativity, I had spent several hours making something which had classic sports car lines. And this time the visor worked. I took it out to a shopping centre one morning, where I normally get the wobbles, tried it on, and was able to walk all the way across no problem.

However, would I wear it in a busy mall on a Saturday afternoon? Probably not.

I had reached the end. This worked, and I couldn't see any way to make it more 'socially acceptable'. Until quite recently, when one sunny day inspiration struck. I had been working to the wrong scale. I had always figured whatever I created needed to secure itself to your head, so needed a strap, or temples (aka ear hooks). But this sunny day I was wearing sunglasses. What if this could attach over, or even under, the glasses.

And this mark three was born.

The original version was several pieces of card, cut to size, and taped together. Afer successful tesing I snipped some of the tape away to see if it would fold flat, and it very nearly did. What I can share with you today is that single flat design.

You will need to make adjustments to the design to work for you. Ideally you want a 'letter box' or 'theatre wide screen' effect when viewing through. If you need to use a dab of clear tape to get the scope to hold its shapre, please do. I find wedging the scope behind the glasses does the task.

First things first, and this is very important. The first time you try wearing this make sure you have somebody with you. Everybody's phobia is different, and should you need help its best to have an understanding person you trust with you.

Also, important, you'll need a pair of scissors or a craft knife, so be careful, or ask an appropriate adult if you aren't already one yourself.

Note that you'll almost certainly have to make adjustments

Let's go...

First, here's the 'blueprint'. Head sizes differ so you might have to make some adjustments. My head is an average adult male, if that helps in any way. I've drawn a grid of centimetre squares over the basic shape to help you will scale.

You'll need some thin to medium density card (cereal box to light packing box would be perfect). In a perfect world you want the card to be close to your skin tone so as to make it less noticeable to others. Here's I'm usung bright white as it was all I had to hand.

Transfer the template to your chosen card.

Cut the shape out. I'd recommend leaving a little more, say half a centimetre, length on the tabs at the top, as these can always be trimmed to fit later.

Make a crease along on the angle on the underside of the tab, folding backwards.

Now do the same on the upper side of the tab. The two lengths should come together, leaving a small crack inbetween.

Now do the same at the otther end. The gap between the hanging parts is where your nose will eventually go!

Now fold the tabs, only this time you want a hard crease AND to fold the tab forward (opposite from how the made the first two folds). Do this on each end. And we're nearly done.

Your final device should look something like this.

You may find the need to do a pinch fold in each end (where the tabs connect) to help force the right final shape from the visor. If this is the case, you might want to snip the tabs off, then fold, before using a little clear tape to reattach.

Now... showing how to fit this behind your glasses/sunglasses is difficult to show as I only have 2 hands and selfies have proved awkward to get helpful angles. So here's some word pictures.

1. In the image above, the top strip goes above the eyes. If you get the fit right it should sit just below the eyebrows, and the natural curve of the eye socket should hold the visor down and in place.

2. The flaps at the bottom sit either side of the nose. and when pushed up I find are held in place again by the eve socket (there's no discomfort, even compared to swimming goggles).

3. The flaps fold up the inside of the arms of the glasses, and should wedge against the frame. You may need to bend and snip this to size. You are looking for enough light pressure from the glasses to hold the visor against your head.

4. I normally put the glasses on first. Then I drop the visor in from above. Before fiddling about to get the tabs in place, and the pinching the top and bottom to get a comfortable fit with the correct visibility. I won't lie, it takes me a few moments, but only about the same amount time as to tie my laces, which even with my old knees doesn't take that long.

5. If the visor sits snuggly in place, and your visibility is restricted enough that you have letterbox vision, whilst being able to clearly see obstructions etc, then you are today's winner. If not please feel free to make your own with whatever adjustments you need to make it fit.

And that's it. It won't be for everyone, but if it helps only a few then I consider this a job well done. It's certainly going to open up my world a bit (once I've made a final 'perfect fit version, in my own skin tone).

Retail Ceilings Explained

13th November 2016

Higher ceilings are good for business

Ceiling height affects the way people think in a positive way. What does this have to do with your thoughts and plans for retail design in your store? Take a look:

  • High ceilings can make your customers feel less confined

While average ceilings in homes are about eight feet high, retail ceilings can be significantly higher – at least ten feet, if not more. Many are as much as a story and a half high.

That's because ceilings invoke feelings of confinement, while higher ceilings invoke feelings of freedom. This has good and bad effects depending on what you're doing, of course, but specifically for retail and consumption, the higher the ceilings, in general, the more expansive consumers feel and the more likely they are to buy.

  • High ceilings will help your customers "open up" to the experience while they shop

High ceilings induce a feeling of freedom and openness, and an impulse to "let go." What does that have to do with retail design? Simply put, the focus shifts from specific to general. While customers may come into your store with a list and specific items to buy, their focus may very well shift to the more general, such as a propensity to browse instead. When customers can browse through every item in your store instead of just the few they have on their list, they are more likely to impulse buy -- and that's good for profit.

  • High ceilings can make your customers more comfortable

There's another reason to go for a feeling of expansiveness in your store with higher ceilings. When customers feel less confined, they are likely to be more comfortable. Even though claustrophobia is a relatively rare condition, you don't want to be boxing your customers into a tiny space if you can help it. They may not want to spend time shopping in your store and may even flee if they can't bear small spaces.

When you "open up your space" by raising your ceilings, you are giving your customers room to "breathe," almost literally. When comfortable, they'll want to stay longer, and when they want to stay longer, they'll be much more likely to buy.

  • They give you more room to go vertical

Well-stocked shelves can give your store a look of being well-stocked without overcrowding, which also makes your customers feel more comfortable. When you have enough in stock, customers know that they can buy what they need to without worry.

  • They can help you keep profits

Finally, higher ceilings give you the ability to use security cameras effectively. You can place cameras for wider shots with smaller lenses, so you can cover larger areas with fewer cameras.

Wide-shot security cameras can help prevent loss from shoplifters, from unreported damage to merchandise, and from fraudulent insurance claims like false slip-and-fall accidents or workman's compensation claims. And because higher ceilings mean cameras can also be placed unobtrusively, customers need not have the uncomfortable feeling of being watched.

When you think about retail design, don't forget to focus for a moment on ceiling height in your store. The higher your ceilings are, in general, the better for your customers and your own profitability. High ceilings make your customers more comfortable; they will also make customers feel more expansive and less focused, so that they will stay, shop, and be more likely to buy. You can also easily improve security camera coverage with high ceilings, deterring theft and other crime.

By Robert Walthall

Article taken from

Thanks to Pam for sharing the link

Extreme Bravery
6th December 2016

Adam, a UK based ACP sufferer recently visited Kuala Lumpa on business. The height of all the buildings was contantly setting off his batophobia, but even so he challenged himself to try to walk the skybridge between the Petronas Towers. He's kindly given permission to post his story and has even sent some pictures.

Well I managed it and enjoyed it.  I kept my Batophobia in check using my trusty Baseball cap and luckily there are no large vacuous spaces unless you go in through the Shopping Mall on the park side of the Twin Towers.

We first had a little walk around the underground foyer then caught a lift to the 41st floor - to the Skybridge.  This is really impressive and I was able to keep cool with the liberal use of the handrail, but looking up at the top of the towers was a bit of an over-reach really.  It took me a couple of minutes at one of the ends of the bridge to get myself under control again.

Then we took the lift to the 83rd floor, then swapped lifts for the last 3 floors up to the 86th floor Observation Room.  Sadly we had a bit of a Monsoon storm before we went up, so the views were a bit restricted by the low cloud, but just wow!  Again, the ceilings were okay... about 15-20' at their highest point so within tolerance for me, despite the shiny stone flooring.  I had to grab hold of the window frames when getting near the glass, but it all went really well.

It's a pretty awesome building/pair of buildings, and provided the Batophobes can cope with the journey inside (cab to the doors was my little trick having done a quick recce a couple of days before) it's reasonably 'safe' for ACP and Batophobes alike.  I've sent you some images from the 86th floor too...

I'm chuffed I managed it.  Another challenge tomorrow - the Batu caves and this promises to really challenge my ACP!!!"

Stage Fright 

12th March 2015

"Okay, boys, go break a leg!" The age-old adage of the theatre (and an irony designed to thwart superstition), and off we went, twenty-odd young boys onto the stage of the Theatre Royal, Timaru, New Zealand. It was 1972, I was nine, and this, a huge production of Lionel Bart's "Olver!", was my debut as an aspiring actor. Assembled at the deliberately grubby tables of the Workshop, hair tousled and our faces smeared with dark chocolate makeup, we started up the first song of the show, "Food Glorious Food".

I looked up. Glanced, really. Ugghhh. Ogod, here it comes, the swoon, the bubble of panic, the sense that all those tons of lighting way above the stage was swaying on its rigging . . . paresthesia, that awful electric tingling in my legs and hips . . . fear . . .

I'm not superstitious, but "go break a leg!" must have worked on me because somehow I got through fifteen shows of "Oliver!", as a Workshop Boy then one of Fagan's Gang, stoically showing no outward sign of my little problem. During the show, I learned that keeping busy helps, and being with a crowd of other people also helps  - almost the opposite of agoraphobia, for indeed, what I had, and still have, is a phobia.

I can't remember not having it. Nor do I remember anything in my childhood that might have sparked it. But I do remember having to be dragged through an old castle in New Zealand's picturesque Otago Province, by my misunderstanding mother who didn't realise I was sheer terrified of those enormous high ceilings and was simply wasting a free tour. I remember being terrified of the many churches in Timaru, of the school hall, of the timber factory my father used to get his building supplies from. "What's WRONG with you?" he queried petulantly. "Dunno," I mumbled, unable to reply because even I didn't know what was wrong.

Well, in the end my parents became very understanding and suggested counselling, which didn't help, and hypnotherapy, which made it worse. By now in my thirties, I had a massive challenge. I am a musician. Musicians perform in halls and auditororia designed for marvellous acoustics - and yet I cannot even look at a photograph of the Royal Albert Hall or the Sydney Opera House without getting a panic attack. I played the famous theatre organ at Paraparaumu, north of Wellington - twice. Perched high up on the bench on a tall dais, with the ceiling yawning far above me, I felt that every time I played the pedals I was about to be pitched backward off the dais into unknown terrors behind me. I love organ music, and had a go at using a small instrument in a church in Wellington for my practice. Uh-huh, no go. My fingers would sweat on the keys, my feet would freeze on the pedals, the whole church seemed to rock and spin around me, and I'd have to do a runner, off out the door to the safety of outside and my car. One day I even forgot to turn the organ blower off in my panic.

It's called altocelarophobia, a fear of high ceilings, and I thought I was the only one in the world to suffer it until I came across this website. All though a visit to England with my father, seeing those magnificent churches and cathedrals and castles, through my career as a piano tuner where in the end I had to limit myself to domestic (house) tunings, leaving the concert halls to someone else, to working on a building site (AAGHHH! Gemme the **** outta here!) - there it is. Altocelarophobia, the awful fear as painful as a Bowie knife in the shoulder, the buzzing tingling of legs and hips, the sweats, the nervous glancing up at the ceiling far away, the irrational **** flash of ****** anger that has to be apologised for afterward, **** it. I have found no cure, except to practice staring into the giddying heights of a photo of a cathedral for as long as I can, and to keep busy when under a vaulted ceiling, and if possible keep with a crowd of people.

One day, with the strength of the Lord, I will find a cure.

K W Austin.

Batophobia Confession 

25th February 2015

We recently received a lovely email from Melanie, who has given her kind permission to repost her words here. Although not an ACP sufferer her personal phobias are related, and even shared with many of us. 

"I am not sure which phobia I have altocelarophobia or batophobia. I am guessing batophobia. I thought I was the only one. All I know is if I ever have to walk down a street with tall buildings and no kind of cover - like an extended store roof - I freak out. I get dizzy, I feel like I am going to get sucked up into the sky, I try not to look up but the compulsion to do so is overwhelming and I have to - which makes me even more terrified. I will literally have to hold on to the side of whatever walls are available and it is so embarrassing.

Thus, I just stay away from putting myself in that environment. I would never ever dream of going to New York. I have this horrible vision of lying down in the street staring up at those tall skyscrapers and I have asked other people - wouldn't that freak you out? And they do look at me like I'm nuts when they say - "uh no"!

Another thing - I can go to the beach but only for a small amount of time before I get that open "sucked up into the sky feeling" again and get uncomfortable. Nowhere near as bad as the buildings - but enough to make me beg whoever I'm with that it's time to go, without telling them why. Anyway, so nice to get this lifelong extreme phobia off my mind."

A Twist of Fate 

10th September 2014

Funny story....

I recently went to a large grocery supermarket. About 2-3 years ago they completely rebuilt the site and the few times I've been I've been unable to even make it into the foyer, as much because of the polished floor as the warehouse ceiling. Anyway, this week I went with a friend, who has been so supportive of my problem. And I made it in, past some kind of promotion where they had three new cars parked in the store (no idea, possibly a raffle)

There were multiple times inside the store where I was using the shopping trolley as a rolling zimmer frame, but generally I was doing very well (super proud of self). We went through the self service check-out and prepared to leave.

Back to the treacherous foyer, and the parked cars. Suddenly my friend stopped and started pointing at this promoted car. Now, this was not helpful. I was stranded and just wanted to make for the exit, but they were stood in the way. Again they pointed. I looked and smiled. And nodded. No clue what they were trying to convey. Then out into the open air.

"What was with the car?" I asked. 

"Didn't you see the number plate?"

I remembered back. Yes I recalled it, but still made no sense, my head was still spinning.

"It was a custom plate. ALTO."

The car was a Suzuki Alto. The custom plate was the name of the car. And the first four letters of the phobia I was trying to conquer. What were the chances?

The Altocelarophobia Joke


4th September 2014 

It's never fun to make fun of the afflicted, but self deprecation seems to be okay, so here goes.

And Altocelarophobe and a non-sufferer walk into a cathedral. Immediately the Altophobe staggers to the wall and gasps for air. His friend asks "What's wrong?" The sufferer briefly explains the problem.
"Why are you so scared of the ceiling?"
"It's not the ceiling I'm scared of, it's all the vacuous space beneath."
"But why are you so scared of the space?"
"Because there's room for three more ceilings in there."

Okay, so as jokes go its not very funny, though it does illustrate the point. If you can do better drop us a line via the contact page.

How I Dealt With A Fear Of High Ceilings


22nd May 2014 

by Stephen Joseph

My phobia was a fear of very high ceilings.

I always thought of it as the polar opposite of Acrophobia (fear of heights). It was funny how I was able to stand on the tallest cliff edge and not feel fear but the moment I was sitting in the nave of a church, I’d be sweating, shaking, and holding on to the pews for all my worth.

It’s still a mystery to this day why I had this phobia. I could not remember a cause or catalyst, nor was there a conscious 

reason for being scared of high ceilings. I didn’t visualize the ceiling collapsing or me being sucked up into the rafters.

It made absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Anyway, a few days ago I was sitting in the nave of a Polish village church which had a very ornately decorated high ceiling. The service lasted around an hour and during this time I couldn’t help but think how a few years earlier I would not have been able to even enter the church let alone sit down in one.

I felt very proud of myself and realised in a very emotional sense just how far I have come in my life, not only in dealing with my fear of high ceilings, but also decreasing and then ridding myself completely of inappropriate anxiety in general.

I’m doing things, going places, and enjoying experiences I never imagined I would get to do, just a few years ago, because of my generalized anxiety, panic attacks, and social phobia.

So let’s say you’re going to a wedding or public occasion soon and you’re worried about panicking and having to flee the scene.

You can do something similar to what I did when gradually pushing myself into the fear zone (a holy fear zone in my case – a most unfortunate oxymoron).

When you feel anxious, focus attentively on a small part of the scene you see before you. For example, you could study the bride’s wedding dress (if at a wedding), and in your mind think of how you would design one and what you would add and take away from the overall look.

Or focus intently on the words of those giving speeches and then actively find deeper (but always positive) meanings in what they say. Think of ways you would say the same in a better way.

This will all focus your mind on something away from whatever fears you are experiencing or worried about feeling. It works. You may still experience some fear but it will decrease and the more you distance yourself from the tortuous mental images you subject yourself too, the better you’ll feel.

This will condition your mind to experience less fear and anxiety in similar situations in the future, which is basically the way to beat anxiety in general, as I found out.

You can find the exact way to do this most effectively by following the Linden Method which was essential in my full recovery from the multiple anxiety disorders and phobias I suffered from.

It teaches you how to use the power of your own mind to heal yourself in a relatively short time rather than the hit-and-miss effects of medication and long very expensive therapies.

The only way to effectively reduce and eradicate anxiety is by changing the way you react to anxiety-inducing situations. Meds, herbal remedies, and talking therapies are kind of like a sticking plaster which can help for a bit, but it has to be taken off eventually.

When you change how you react, think, and behave in regards to anxiety, then you have the keys to a permanent relaxed, balanced and more confident life. It would be very difficult to go backwards from there, in fact, it would be impossible.

Now I am off to explore the capital city of Warsaw and perhaps enter one of the cathedrals.

It’s very warm and sunny here.

Have a lovely day.  

Foot note
A few weeks ago I found this article on another site. It was an excellent read and I wanted to share it with you. I published a link in the resource page, and then sent an email to the author asking permission to repost. Unfortunately no reply has been received. Its such good material I'll share it here anyway, and can recommend the source site for further reading.

If this is your original work and wish it to be removed please use the contact page.

Poetry Corner 

7th May 2014 

While skirting through the internet for the latest news and gossip I stumbled across this beautifully penned poem. Its accredited to NikolaTesla, though I strongly suspect this is a non de plume. I've reposted here, and a direct link to the source is available via the resource page.


The ceiling rises above me
Towering high above my head
I can feel the emptiness
Right at the base of my neck

I crane my neck slowly upwards
To get a look at the space
How far it is away
The miles between us

That word, that devilish word

I gaze at it for a moment
Just long enough to let out my breath
I jerk my head down
And gasp at what I saw

My legs are shaking
And my knuckles are white
From gripping to the sides
Of the carefully carved bench

That word, That devilish word

I know I look crazy
But is this something one can help?
All around me people are gawking
At the scenes depicted on the walls

I try to gawk at them to
But ceiling is far too high

That word, That devilish word

When people say I’m faking
Being terrified of the high ceiling
Even my closest friends speak those words to me
Attention hog, liar

I stare at them with disbelief
Why would they say this?

You think I would want to have this?
This uncontrollable fear
That makes my knees shake 
and brings tears to my eyes?

That word, That devilish word

I close my eyes and picture myself
Soaring upwards and crashing into the ceiling
My neck is broken
I am no longer here

I’m on the ceiling, dead
I open my eyes with a start
I’m not dead
I tell myself

Gravity will hold me
But is that really true?

That word, That devilish word



13th March 2014

I've had kind permission from Ashley to repost from her blog dated January 2013. Some of the context is lost here so I'll be making some minor edits. Please check her blog for the full experience. 

Over to Ashley....

When it starts: I walk into the building past the entrance doors. The area is big, and I could see the other side. Therefore, my eyes begin to go upward towards the wide, high portion of the building that you call a ceiling.

What my mind is telling my body: My eyes transmit a signal to my brain, which is somehow confused by the sight. It somehow picks up the signal as though gravity has gone and I am somehow floating up towards the ceiling. And once I reach the ceiling, gravity returns and I am falling back down to the ground.

The symptoms: Just like the common reactions to the fear of heights, I lose circulation in my limbs, cannot feel my feet touching the floor (in other words become jelly-legged), and most importantly become dizzy. As for fainting I have not done that yet, but that does not mean that there is no possibility that it has happened to anyone else with this phobia.

Hence, the term "Altocelarophobia". I am highly unaware to who may have named it but I am glad that I am not the only one who has this phobia. Moreover, I am also quite appalled as to hearing that quite a number of people who have heard about this thinks that it is a joke. It is not a joke, and it has been a plague to quite a number of us.

My Experience:

Here are a few places that I've been in the past that have affected me.

  • Gymnasium at school

  • The church I grew up in (I'm attending another church now, but its not because of this phobia)

  • The mall in my town where I went to (About 25 miles from Cleveland)

  • Airport terminals/concourses (Excluding Cleveland Hopkins because none of the ceilings are high enough)

  • Local Hospital Lobby

  • Big Cathedrals

  • Fremont Street, Las Vegas

  • Ridiculously large lobbies

Those highlighted in green are ones that do not bother me anymore. I left airport terminals and concourses highlighted in yellow as there are thousands of them in the world that I have not been to, but I am glad to mention only one of them have daunted me. That airport was the McNamara Terminal at the Detroit Metro/Wayne County International Airport in Romulus, Michigan, but it absolutely does not bother me any more- mainly because I have grown out of it.

Obviously churches are hard to go to. I traveled to the Philippines in 2010 and have encountered a number of them with high ceilings-many of which are in Manila, the country's capital city. Not just the churches, but also SM Baguio, which I highly suggest that you do not use the stairwell to go from floor to floor. It does not help and will only worsen your symptoms.

This Is A Joke Right?:

No, and for your information I disapprove of idiotic comments that pertain to this heading. It is rude, obnoxious, and it shows how uneducated you are about being open to new things. But I'm not here to bash the those who are actually interested in continuing on reading about this post.

The only reason why I added this is because some people who do not have this phobia but have heard of it have been in denial that it does exist (Including the scientific community)! It does exist, and reactions like this can only slow ideas of the possibility that there may be a solution!

But first I would like to discuss something else that I've been thinking about for some time now.

Possibly Related Causes That Can Increase The Symptoms:

Before you read this section, please note that I'm no doctor nor have I attended college- yet. These are just some theories that I've been looking into while trying to learn more about myself and my altocelarophobia. 

1. Caffeine

I'm not going to rule this outbecause it appeared to play a good factor when I went to Newark this past August. That, and I am unable to take as much caffeine as the average person, but I'll talk about that next. It can cause you to be quite hyper and more alert to your surroundings. Therefore, you can become more attentive to physical factors such as high ceilings, have less control over your fear, and freak out much faster. 

When I went to Newark last August, I took a temporary hiatus on caffeine. When I ate my sushi prior to the concert, I drank Sprite. And prior plus after going into the Prudential Center, I consumed only water. Therefore, the problems with being in a high ceiling was more controllable.

2. Anxiety

Yes. It is a possibility that one who suffers anxiety while being altocelarophobic can have an increase in symptoms. Your heart rate is already faster from the anticipation of the high ceiling itself, which eventually makes this a possible factor. It is not a given but I'll list it anyway!

3. Fear Of Heights

This can also play a factor. It is the complete opposite or upside down version of altocelarophobia. I myself have had this fear as a child. However since I rappelled down a high tower in 2007 I have not felt any fear of heights. Funny story though, but that happened outdoors. I am still not sure how I would have reacted had I done it indoors underneath a high ceiling.

4. History Of Vertigo, Fear Of Roller Coasters, Standing Next To Tall Structures Or Buildings

I know this may sound a little strange, but vertigo may be a cause as well. If you are vertically challenged, this may be something that you may want to look out for. If you have a hard time rock climbing or climbing anything in general, this may play a great factor as to the fear itself.

Like for example, I went to Cedar Point the year the Windseeker made its debut, and when I came near it and looked up I began to feel a little dizzy just looking at it. I'm not sure if it was the spinning or the top disk of the tower represented a ceiling that caused it. Nonetheless, I could hardly continue to look up at it.

However, the tall building part did not seem to daunt me when I went to places such as Cleveland or Newark. Of course I felt a little odd being in the middle of several tall buildings, but I quickly got used to being around them. In June 2012 I went to see a baseball game in Cleveland, and getting to the stadium I had to go through a large tall building that had to be at least thirty or so stories high. Right before I entered the building I looked straight up and had absolutely no reaction to it whatsoever. Same went for the Gateway Building in Newark- no reaction.

Things That Can Possibly Lessen The Fear (But not exactly cure it):

For the past year or so, I've been trying to do self-experiments that may alter the signals within the mind. They can lessen the fear, but only temporarily or permanently just for that ceiling itself. 

There was recently an article where a psychiatrist mentioned that the phobia is treatable, but for those of us who have no idea where to turn to for this treatment, while trying to find them I can say that the following things can help you a bit.

1. Moving Escalators

I have tried this at 2 locations in the United States: Dicks Sporting Goods at Great Northern Mall in North Omstead, Ohio, and the entrance lobby of the Gateway Building (Down Mulberry from the Prudential Center) in Newark, New Jersey. Tried it going both up and down while looking up at the high ceiling and did experience a few results. One of them was that this eliminated those signals that I mentioned, and another was the disappearance of the fear itself due to my realization that I was not falling.

2. Less Caffeine 

We've already covered this in the causes section. But if you know that you may be entering a building with a wide-open space and a high ceiling, you may want to stay off caffeine completely. I also want to mention that if you drink diet soda it does affect your heart.

3. Don't Just Stand There! Move Around A Little!

This has helped for me when I was in elementary and had to deal with being under a high gymnasium ceiling. Therefore I learned how to run around as well as put up with being underneath it over time. Of course this is not just an instant in-the-same-day thing, but getting used to it did take a lot of guts which eventually paid off in the end. Another thing this has led to was my easy shake-off of being inside a basketball stadium for a bit. Of course the first few minutes are a doozie, but if I have something to concentrate on and eventually forget that I'm there, no problem'o!

4. Fight The Fear!

This is just a fragment taken and rewritten from my previous blog about my 2NE1 experience. 

On August 17, 2012, I attended the Newark leg at the Prudential Center. The stadium has a relatively high ceiling. Upon first entering the stadium I did freak out a little and step out for about ten seconds with thoughts of actually leaving. However, because I had traveled for hours, paid lots of money, and have been vying to be a part of this once-in-a-lifetime concert/ history-making moment (This group is from Korea and this was their first show in the United States), I literally clenched both fists and power-walked to where I was to stand! 

*Sings English Chorus of Can't Nobody*

And believe me, it paid off!

5. Medication

I have heard that this may help, but I am not sure how much since I have never tried this.

Closing Statement:

Before I end this I would like to clearly state that these are things that only pertain to my knowledge and experience. I am not a psychiatrist nor a professional, and each of us who have this phobia may differ in levels. Also, I do apologize if any fragment or piece of this blog post is inaccurate and I will make further changes to it if necessary. Right now since I have no clue to what exactly may be a cure I stand at the stage of trial-and-error.

If you are planning to do self-experiments like mine, please make sure you have someone to accompany you when doing so and make proper safety measures depending on the symptoms which you face.

For those of you who are doctors, psychiatrists, media outlets et cetera, hopefully this blog may help you in your research to find a potential cure.

Teen School Gym Nightmare

13th November 2016

Here's a few words from a fellow sufferer Katie.

First photo is a bad quality photo I took of my old school's gym (I moved schools) I almost broke down when I had to go in here but there was no way I could avoid it, I got use to it as long I didn't look up. They renovated it and got wooden floors which triggered my phobia.

Second photo is of the assembly hall, once I had to sit in there with 400 other people for nearly 3 HOURS!!! After a hour I started crying and walked out, I told the teachers I was sick. What made it worse was the fact that all the doors were closed so I felt trapped.

What happens when I go into a building with a high ceiling:

•Dissociation (feel disconnected from my body)
•Feeling of floating
•Continuous feeling of stomach drop
•breathing difficulties
•feeling like the floor is moving underneath me
•walls are stretching out
•eyes feel tired/dull and eye sight feels worse but wearing my glasses causes 10x more anxiety

I've had altocelarophobia since I was around 10 years old, I'm 15 and still struggle. I've avoided a specific shopping mall for 2 years and I've skipped school trips just because I'm scared about the ceilings.

 Hang Son Doong

First discovered in 1991 by a local man "Mountain River Cave" (Vietnamese) is the largest known cave in the world. Its first proper exploration was as recently as 2009. The largest chamber is more than 5km long, 200m high and 150m wide. Containing a river, forest, baseball sized cave pearls, and 70m high stalagmites, it really is like something from "the Lost World".

London St Pancras International

When it was originally built St Pancras station was the largest single span structure in the world. Even now it is quite impressive and somewhat foreboding. It is currently used as the London terminus for Eurostar's cross channel rail link.

What's the Point of This? 

This seems a waste of perfectly good first floor space (second floor if you are American). Isn't there enough light entering this room already? How do these three little windows actually add anything to the ambiance? A horrific use of architectural license. Unless of course this is a glass floor/ceiling, which as far as this author is concerned is an even greater sin!

High ceiling living area

German Art Installation

'Big Air Package' by artist Christo, during a preview at the Gasometer in Oberhausen. This indoor installation was created for the former gas holder, is 90 metres high, with a diameter of 50 metres and a volume of 177,000 cubic metres. Not somewhere I plan on visiting any time soon.

Big Air Package

British Glass Roofs 

While not especially high, the sprawling glass roof of the British Museum in London is likely to be uncomfortable for some.

British Museum, glass ceiling

The top floor of The Gherkin (30 St Mary Axe, London) with its domed glass roof, highly polished floor, and 360 degree views of the city are likely to have most sufferers struggling 

Gherkin glass domed roof

Man's Best Friend

Okay, this one's a bit silly. I'm sorry. I really am. But if anyone else suffers these symptoms I recommend a good strong straight jacket!

Dog has ACP vine movie clip  

 Worst Case Scenario

The world's highest ceiling is in the main lobby at the Burj al Arab in Dubai, standing an outrageous 180 metres tall. These architects should be ashamed of themselves! 

World's highest ceiling

The Evil Continues 

The Burj al Arab (above) is simply shocking decadence. At least the NASA Vehicle Assembly Building has a justifiable reason for its 160 metre high ceiling, making it the tallest single story building in the world. However, if the building were redesigned by myself they'd simply have to build these rockets on their side.

NASA vehicle assembly building

Just Me (this site's author)

11th March 2014

Okay, let's start with a bit about me (this website's author). I'm a forty something male, self-employed, divorcee. Like anyone my good times have been very good, and my bad times almost impossibly difficult. All the while, in the background, I've had this niggling problem.

Its not as if I've been like this all my life. Yes, as a child I was scared of heights. But this has lessened over the decades. Now, so long as I feel safe, heights aren't a problem. Just last year I clambered to the top of my neighbours scaffolding, granted only one and a bit stories up, but did it without a thought. Heights are under control.

A more noticeable problem has been that of batophobia. I can't say when this developed, but certainly later than acrophobia. I remember visiting Nelson's column in London as a child without any issues. These days even certain buildings in my own small town can set the giddies off. For example, the Post Office is a fairly large building, but in total is no more than about four regular stories in height. I walk passed higher buildings, but this one tends to loom at me. Generally I start to have problems with buildings five or more stories high, though it does vary depending on each individual construct.

Batophobia I can kind of deal with. Mostly. In general I just pick a target, stick my head down and walk with purpose. I get into trouble if anyone stops me. Mind you, so do they!

The big embarrassment in my life though is Altocelarophobia. This must have developed sometime in my early 20s. My rule of thumb is rail termini. As a teenager I would go to London Victoria railway station, sometimes even for fun. The shopping there was cool, and the burgers... oh, the burgers! By my late 20s I struggled using it at all. Even my local Brighton termini was causing me difficulties. As this developed later in life I don't expect I'll ever grow out of it.

I have discovered that its not just high ceilings, but the shape of them too. Arched or domed ceilings cause me problems almost regardless of height. As a example, the entrances to Churchill Square Shopping Centre in Brighton are not particularly foreboding. Indeed, my first visit I walked in without any concern. It wasn't long before my knees buckled though. The ceiling is a half arch, higher on one side than the other. And then there is the mirror-like polished floor. In retrospect I never stood a chance. 

Since then I have returned, with the sole purpose of conquering my demon. I planned the journey, knew where the shop I wanted to visit was in the mall, and exactly what I wanted to buy. I travelled for 30 mins, walked to the centre, was thinking of anything BUT the problem, distraction technique. Strode purposefully into the hall (low, half arched ceiling, polished floor) and within 20 yards was staggering into the nearest shop. Within seconds I was fine, though it took a couple of minutes for the vertigo to settle. I then marched back out, which was easier as the exit was so close it filled my field of view.

For years I thought I had an inner ear balance problem. I was even tested. Twice. Nothing was found that would cause such extreme difficulties. Then, unexpectedly I stumbled across Batophobia on a TV game show, and the rest is history. Thank you Stephen Fry!!!

So, what have I learned about my personal phobia?

Being aware of an environment in advance can help me prepare. Unexpected cavernous locations simply cannot be handled.

Glass ceilings and/or walls make things worse

Polished floors are worse still

Carpets are a help

Standing under a ledge, or in a doorway helps

Generally, if I can't see the ceiling, while having both sides of the 'room' in my field of view, its okay

Sitting helps. Lying down makes things worse.

As its a visual phobia, being blindfolded is the best answer. Though you really need to have 100% trust in your guide. (I haven't actually tried this, but I am confident that I would be fine).

So, that's me. Yes, I deliberately avoid situations which I feel I wouldn't be able to handle, which has definitely affected my social life. But now that I have a name for my demon I have taken a first step to living with him. His name is ACP!