Sweating, palpitations, dizziness, anguish, panic attacks ... These are some of the symptoms that some people experience when it's time to fly. At the doors of the Easter holidays, these days will be many who will take advantage of these days of rest to travel to the most varied destinations. For some of those who do it by plane, the experience will not be pleasant. And the fear of flying is one of the most frequent phobias. Traumas or insecurities are among the causes of the so-called aerophobia, the intense and irrational fear of flying or planes.
It is a fear that suffers between 15 and 30% of the population, although in only a small part we can talk about phobia, fear paralyzing exaggeratedly high that floods all areas of our lives and can produce very unpleasant situations.
Although overcoming this type of phobias is a complicated task and in many cases requires professional help, it is possible to follow a series of guidelines to make the trance of taking a plane more bearable. Psychologists warn that each patient is different, but provide some recommendations so that people who are going to fly can do it in a more relaxed way.
Choose your seat As far as possible choose your seat in the hallway and avoid being next to the window, where the fear of flying can be joined by a certain feeling of vertigo. If you book well in advance, you will have the possibility to choose the place where you feel.
Look for distractions. Take advantage of the flight to do activities that you like. For example, you can take the opportunity to read a magazine on a theme that is pleasing to you or you can listen to your favorite group. If you resort to music, you should know that songs with a slow tempo similar to that of the heartbeat will help reduce the nerves. Another possibility is to talk to the person sitting next to you on the plane. Everything is valid except to focus on looking for possible abnormalities (noise on the plane, movements of the crew €).
It uses relaxation techniques. Take a deep breath and get comfortable in the airplane seat. There are many breathing exercises and techniques that exist to calm the nerves and help reassure us. Put them into practice and you will see how you can drastically reduce anxiety levels.
Take care of your wardrobe Try to avoid tight clothing. Instead, wear comfortable and loose clothing. They will make you feel better and you will be more comfortable in the reduced space with are the seats of the aircraft.
Be careful what you drink, eat or drink. It is not advisable to resort to alcohol intake, as it is an exciting that can lead to even more anxiety. Neither energy drinks, in addition to coffees and teas, are a good option, as they can increase adrenaline levels. Excessive feeding is not a good idea either. Regarding the use of drugs, this option should only be used under medical supervision.
Prepare the flight from home. Although logically it is not the same, you can resort to reproduce in your house what you will live on the plane. Sit in an armchair and try to behave as you would on the plane. You can look for distractions, such as listening to music or doing a crossword puzzle.
Arrive at the airport in time. In order to familiarize yourself with everything that will come during the flight, try to arrive at the airport in advance. In this way you will familiarize yourself with the environment that you will find during the flight and you will be able to arrive more calmly to the airplane. In this sense, if you suffer from aerophobia, it is not a good idea to wait until the last moment to get to the airport and hurry up to the plane.
Eliminate negative thoughts Let yourself be carried away by the calm, trust the crew and follow their indications. Ask them any questions you have about the phases of the flight and, above all, do not let negative thoughts or fears grip you or take you to a panic situation.
Investigate the technical aspects of the airplane. It is one of the safest means of transport and you should know it. Learn about how airplanes work and the strict controls and checks that aircraft undergo. This can help you feel more secure. In addition, you can also investigate the complexity of the training process to which the crew members are subjected. Convince yourself that you are in the best hands.
Travel accompanied. If you have this possibility, travel in company can be a relief, because in this way the person suffering from aerophobia will not feel alone and can share their thoughts with someone. Traveling with a friend or family member is a good way to get distracted.
If none of these recommendations work and for work or personal reasons we are forced to take a plane frequently, the best option is to put yourself in the hands of a professional. In this case, there are courses that combine the support from psychologists with technical information about airplanes that are one of the best options to combat the fear of flying.