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Fear of flying
Information on Aviophobia
Aviophobia is the term used to define an irrational fear of flying. Although most people understand that airplanes sometimes crash, one suffering from Aviophobia believes that the exact plane that they are on will, in fact, crash resulting in their ultimate doom. Common symptoms of Aviophobia include breathlessness, nausea, dry mouth, unclear speech and thought, giddiness, excessive perspiration, losing of psychological control, heart palpitations, shakes and occasional bouts of anxiety and depression. This fear can become a life altering phobia due to today's fast paced, and fast traveled world. Aviophobia can keep sufferers away from loved ones, held back from business related promotions and devoid of vacation fun. Aviophobia is also a from of control issue because one is nearly completely helpless while in the air. Slightly more common in women then in men, Aviophobia is also seen in children, especially of those who suffer from the phobia themselves. Hence, Aviophobia is a learned response that can be passed down from first hand or second hand experiences. Treatments such as psychotherapy, relaxation technique building, counseling and hypnotherapy are designed promote self-control. Airlines sometimes offer treatment help using many of these techniques.
Part of treating Aviophobia is sharing information on the wonders of flying. Understanding how the mechanisms in an airplane work together to keep it afloat can reassure sufferers of Aviophobia that flying is a safe way to travel. Although counseling and therapy focuses on the issues surrounding the fear, gradual exposure therapy involves direct exposure to the fear. Virtual reality therapy can offer a faster and more affordable method of gradual exposure.