8 Travelling Phobias That Kill Your Wanderlust

"Travel" is a word that should instantly induce the feeling of happiness and enthusiasm. Sadly, there are people who feel oth...

"Travel" is a word that should instantly induce the feeling of happiness and enthusiasm. Sadly, there are people who feel otherwise.

To some people who suffer from a phobia, the idea of leaving the comfort of their home makes their heart raising out of anxiety rather than excitement. They find other places, people, and experiences threatening and can trigger their irrational fear. Living with a phobia cripples you from the inside, depriving you of the ability to see and feel the great things the world has to offer.

From the most common to the most unlikely, here are some phobias that may hinder you from travelling and some self-help and professional ways to overcome them.

1. Aviophobia (fear of flying or air travel)
When phobias like acrophobia (fear of heights) and claustrophobia (fear of enclosed spaces) combine, the result will likely be aviophobia. If you live with this fear, you find the tight space or airplanes thousand kilometers high up in the air daunting for your sense of security. You also experience panic attacks and tend to detach yourself from reality when you think of the possible worst-case scenarios like a plane crash, terrorism, hijacking, and other threats you have no control over.

How to overcome:
Educating yourself more about aviation can lessen your fear of flight. Then, make right decisions when booking for a flight to avoid triggers. For a smoother flight, opt for larger planes and sit on a seat over the wing. To make you feel less trapped, opt for an exit row or aisle seat. Doing some breathing exercises can also help during panic attacks. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth slowly to the count of 10. Try to repeat four to five times.

2. Thalassophobia (fear of the ocean or sea travel)
While some people find relaxation at the sight of a sea or ocean, there are others who feel nothing but terror. If you have thalassophobia, travelling via ship or boat, especially when exposed to the view of the ocean, sends shivers down your spine and can induce panic attacks. You find no enjoyment in taking a cruise or simply feasting your eyes on the view of blue, open water. The thoughts of drowning, falling helplessly deep down and getting devoured by terrifying sea creatures are banging inside your head.

How to overcome:
Free yourself from thalassophobia by re-programming your mind through therapy. One therapy that can help you is Hypnotherapy. Here, series of hypnosis sessions will help you straighten out your response to the fear and minimize the anxiety every time you see the ocean.

3. Emetophobia (fear of vomiting)
If you have emetophobia, you have an intense fear of throwing up in public, seeing or hearing other people vomit, and fear of being nauseated. Even hearing a joke about throwing up, seeing a character in a TV show getting sick, and hearing the word “vomit” can send you spiraling into a panic attack.

How to overcome:
Having a safety kit composed of peppermints, motion sickness bags, antacids, and headphones to distract yourself can help for now but if you want to get rid of the fear, you have to be willing to undergo exposure therapy. You'll be exposed to smells, videos, and photos of vomiting or spitting, compelled to sit in the back seat of a car, or forced to face other fear-inducing situations. The aim of the treatment is to help you live your life without being restricted by an excessive fear.

4. Mysophobia (fear of germs)
If you'd rather hurt your gut than use the public restrooms, you might be living with mysophobia. You see the world as a filthy place and with this, you wash your hands frequently, sanitize your hotel room excessively, refuse to use public facilities, and avoid places and social activities that include getting in contact with "germy" people and animals, which all hinder you from enjoying the fun and thrill of travelling.

How to overcome:
Exposure therapy is also a great way to overcome your mysophobia. It requires professional help but you may also do it yourself if you put your heart and mind into it. Start by looking at a picture or video of a dirt, seeing it personally, standing on it, touching it briefly, and holding it in your hand.

5. Enochlophobia (Fear of Crowds)
The idea of getting skin-to-skin with people just makes your blood run cold. You're not anti-social. You find the masses of people too noisy and congested and you feel like your personal space is getting violated. With this, you may attempt going great lengths to avoid the crowd or free yourself from it which makes it irrational.

How to overcome:
You can overcome the phobia through self-help. Firstly, learn proper breathing techniques and focus on your breath. Then, gradually expose yourself to crowds, starting from smaller events to larger events. If you feel uncomfortable at a party, try to focus on socializing with one person to keep your mind occupied and avoid negative thoughts.

6. Agyrophobia (fear of crossing the street)
It can be a result of a mental disorder or a specific traumatic event. You see the roads as deadly and crossing a street or intersection can cause bodily harm to oneself. Even if you are assured of safety near road or intersection, you still can't control the uncomfortable aversion to such environment.

How to overcome:
Like other phobias, agyrophobia can be treated by exposure therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy. In these procedures, you will be gradually exposed to the source of your fear while learning to control your mental and physical reactions to it.

7. Pedophobia (fear of children)
If you have a persistent abnormal stress reaction when you're around children, you might be living with pedophobia. Behaviors such as fussing and crying, and yelling and running around drive you insane. You also tend to avoid visiting kid-friendly locations such as amusement parks, playgrounds, and museums.

How to overcome:
Avoidance of children and kid-friendly places isn't always the best way to go so seek professional help. The therapist will identify the root cause of your fear and will work out a suitable treatment for you which may include behavioral therapy or exposure therapy. Medicines may also be prescribed.

8. Halitophobia (fear of bad breath)
There's nothing to laugh about this. It's pretty normal to feel not as confident as you can be after travelling for long hours with a lack of dental regimen. But if you have an obsession with chewing gums and mints, going to the bathroom repeatedly to brush your teeth and gargle, and you refuse to talk to people, it's a different story.

How to overcome:
Firstly, visit a dentist so he or she can tell you whether or not you actually have halitosis. Then try to open up to others, especially your loved ones, and seek their honest opinions. If these assurances aren't enough for you to overcome the anxiety, try to seek professional help from psychotherapists.

Read also : 14 Unusual International Customs And Laws You Must Keep In Mind As You Travel

Author Bio:

Carmina Natividad is a writer who has always been passionate about giving in to her wanderlust and collecting mementos from different places. She also enjoys writing for Holiday Inn, a modern hotel in Western Sydney known for their exceptional accommodation, service, and location, which appeals to travellers in Australia.



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8 Travelling Phobias That Kill Your Wanderlust
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