my·​so·​pho·​bia ˌmī-sə-​ˈfō-​bē-​ə How to pronounce mysophobia (audio)
: abnormal fear or hatred of uncleanliness or contamination (as with dirt or germs) : germophobia
Those with mysophobia and OCD may feel compelled to wash their hands frequently or clean sheets, desks and other surfaces at every chance.Marissa Russo
Several years ago, [Howie] Mandel went public with his mysophobia, an irrational fear of germs, which has controlled his life personally and publically.Justin Katz
mysophobe noun
or less commonly mysophobic
plural mysophobes also mysophobics
A self-confirmed mysophobe—one who fears contamination from germs—I am always armed with a little bottle of hand sanitizer and lots of prayer. Sarah Nothelfer
mysophobic adjective
You do not have to be mysophobic to want to slip on rubber gloves when you enter an airplane cabin. Hugo Marin

Word History


Greek mýsos (neuter s-stem) "pollution, defilement" (of uncertain origin) + -o- + -phobia

First Known Use

1879, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of mysophobia was in 1879

Dictionary Entries Near mysophobia

Cite this Entry

“Mysophobia.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


variants or misophobia
: abnormal fear of or distaste for uncleanliness or contamination
mysophobic adjective
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