Did you know that Aerophobia affects 6.5 percent of the population?
Many people are having a hard time overcoming fear of flying for the simple reason that they have developed a phobia on it. Phobia or the irrational fear of people to some things is what makes some individuals develop fear of flying.
For some, it seems really illogical to be afraid of something wrong that might happen during the flight. But, experts say that being afraid of flying is a very serious matter that should not be taken lightly. This is because it may follow a domino effect to people. In short, if the person is unable to overcome that fear, chances are it will be easier for him or her to develop other fears in things or experience in the future.
What causes fear of flying?
Experts say that there are basically two major reasons why people are having a hard time in overcoming fear of flying: bad experiences and media hype on air accidents.
The first reason is very valid because the person, him or herself, developed that fear because he or she experienced something bad in one of his or her flights. This bad encounter usually causes people—who used to enjoy flying and travelling by plane—before to hesitant ever taking a flight again because they fear that the same experience would happen again. Some of the bad experiences that might cause one to develop dear of flying are heavy or prolonged turbulence inside the plane that it caused by a bad weather.
Aside from natural phenomenon, another reason is mechanical problems while one is up there. Usually, planes are checked before the flight. But even if they are double checked, it is unavoidable at times that it might encounter mechanical problems while aboard. The tendency of this occurrence is the flight will be aborted or will take an emergency landing which triggers the panic among the passengers.
Another reason is the media hype up on air accidents. Although it is a must that the media would do reports on tragedies up in the sky, sometimes, the reports are just too “tragic” that inculcate fear to many people. Can you imagine seeing a place bursting into piece during an accident. If you see that on national television or on the newspaper, this fear would instantly turn into phobia.
Physical Symptoms of Aerophobia
- increased heart rate
- cold hands
- shortness of breath
- choking sensation
These signs can occur when a person is thinking about flying, about to board a plane, or while flying.
Aerophobia is typically treated with therapy, medication, or a combination of the two. Anti-anxiety medications can help manage symptoms before and during a flight. Exposure therapy is commonly used to treat aerophobia, by allowing an individual to become gradually more adjusted to the ideas and sensations of flying. Cognitive behavioral therapy can also help an individual test the reality of irrational thought patterns they have about flying. Aerophobia is treatable, so don’t hesitate to reach out to a mental health professional who can help. Many professionals specialize in specific phobias or other anxiety-related issues, and because aerophobia is so common, many therapists have likely worked with people on this issue before.
How to get serious
Overcoming fear of flying is not easy but it doesn’t mean that it is impossible to achieve it. The best thing that can be done is to really get serious in overcoming that fear. For people who would want to get rid of this phobia, the first thing that they should do is acknowledging that fear. Once fear is acknowledged, you can address surrounding issues. Here are some of the things that you can also do to really overcome that fear gripping you when the thought of flying enters your mind.
- Be informed. Being educated about this phobia is the best weapon in overcoming fear of flying. If you know very well what may cause your fears and you know how to overcome them, it will be easier for you to overcome greater fears while aboard.
- Always be relaxed. Relaxation is also another effective way in overcoming fear of flying. If you are relaxed during a flight, the tendency is for you to have a clearer mind. Remember that phobia is related to one’s imagination, if you are relaxed, you won’t think too much of untoward possibilities.
Also take in consideration that Aerophobia is nothing to be embarrassed about, but it is something to be honest about. Consider today who you can recruit to help you manage anxiety about flying and live the life you want.