Last Updated on March 1, 2023
Does the thought of being thousands of feet in the air among the clouds make your heart race? If so, you’re not alone. In fact, aviophobia (the fear of flying) affects about 6.5% of the population in the U.S. Many travelers can have different anxiety triggers when flying on a plane. These may include take-off, landings, turbulence, and being far from home, among others. Moreover, flight anxiety is often fueled by worst-case scenario thoughts. Read on to learn some common causes of flight anxiety and ways to help ease your fear of flying.
There are many common causes of flight anxiety. These may include the fear of heights, additional tension from claustrophobia or another phobia, and inherited fear from family members. Additionally, some travelers can feel overwhelmed or out of control when on a plane. Others may have concerns of experiencing a health emergency without access to medical care. No matter what the cause is, the symptoms of aviophobia can include excessive sweating, nausea, heart palpitations, shaking, chills, and upset stomach.
Fortunately, there are many ways to overcome your flight anxiety. A good way to start easing your fear is by researching the facts. For example, for the average American, the annual risk of dying in a plane crash is around 1 in 11 million. Another way to calm your anxiety is to distract yourself. Try watching a movie, reading a book, drawing, or listening to a soothing playlist. These activities can help shift your attention and bring your focus elsewhere.
Travelers who experience more intense flight anxiety may want to consider trying therapy to help address and manager their fear. A professional therapist can also offer breathing techniques to help ease anxiety.
For more information on how to alleviate flight anxiety, see the accompanying resource.
Infographic created by The Parking Spot