|The fear of flying is the third most common phobia after the fear of snakes and spiders. Whilst 90% of adults are apprehensive when flying, fear only occurs in 10-25% of airline passengers.|
There are various components which may cause the fear of flying – concern over heights, loss of control, claustrophobia, physiological effects, media ”hype” and fear of the unknown.
To help overcome the fear, some airlines run courses which combine behavioural techniques and educational input on aspects of flying, including helpful material on aircraft noises and other area which may cause distress, such as turbulence. Many courses finish with a flight, which is carried out in carefully controlled situations.
Research has shown that the above interventions are effective and that the benefit may be sustained.
In severe cases, a GP may be able to prescribe a mild tranquiliser to assist in the process.
During the flight, it is advisable to avoid excess caffeine and alcohol.