Does the phrase “fasten your seatbelts for takeoff” make your heart race? Does the very notion of boarding an aircraft make you nervous? Do you spend your time in the air worrying that a door will fly off that something even worse will happen? If so, you are certainly not alone. In fact, the fear of flying is one of the commonest phobias around.
The psychology behind fear of flying
Aviophobia is real. So are acrophobia (fear of heights) and claustrophobia (fear of closed-in spaces). When you fly with others, there’s a very good chance that one or more of these oh-so-real albeit somewhat irrational fears are being felt by at least some of your fellow passengers, explain travel pros at Business Insider magazine.
Enochlophobia (fear of crowds) begins in some travelers as soon as they enter an airport terminal. Put them aboard an aircraft with strangers, and xenophobia (fear of strangers) can set in, too. And, despite the fact that airline crashes are quite uncommon, fear of a sudden harsh landing on air or water also plague a sizeable number of air travelers. According to the National Institutes of Mental Health explain that while only around 6 percent of airline travelers have a phobia entirely linked to airplanes, some 40 percent of travelers experience some sort of flight-related anxiety. Of these, around 10 percent suffer such anxiety that they cannot board an aircraft without professional psychological help, notes ABC Health & Wellbeing magazine.
Airline crashes are rare, but they make big scary news
Every year, we hear about some horrible airplane crash or another. When Malaysian Airlines flight 17 went down in Ukraine, it seemed to trigger a flurry of bad aircraft news, including a downed TransAsia flight off Taiwan and an Air Algerie aircraft disappeared in the waters off Mali. Yes, these were terrible aviation events, but when you consider how many flights take off and land every day, the relative number is very small. If news like this causes you to swear off air travel forever, you might miss out on a lot of adventure at the Marriott Sanibel Island Hotel and beyond.
Fear of flying: Facts and fiction
When you add up all the people in America who have a fear of flying, the tally is a staggering 25 million. Flying fear ranges from mild anxiety to full-blown panic. People who become superstitious about a particular airplane flight may think they are having a warning premonition, when in reality what they experience is more akin to anticipatory anxiety.
If you believe you are what psychologists call ‘flight avoidant,’ there are ways to calm your nerves. Cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT helps many flight-fearful persons to relax and enjoy their trip to visit Marriott Sanibel Island Hotel or other far-flung destination. Talk to a therapist about your flight phobia. Practice calming breathing techniques and learn to focus on a pleasant thought in lieu of building your anxiety through worry.
Research flight safety, and you will see that airline travel is actually one of the all-around safest modes of transportation. Once you believe in your heart and mind that airplane travel will probably not harm you, you may be exhilarated and look forward to your next airplane ride.