For many, flying triggers claustrophobia – it is a fear of being enclosed in a confined place like in an airplane cabin. According to experts, around 5 percent of the total population experiences claustrophobia.
Claustrophobia can lead to:
- Panic attacks
- Increased heartbeat rate
Being an anxious flyer, we know you must be worried about your trip – RIGHT? Don’t be.
It is common anxiety in which an irrational fear of having no escape leads to a panic attack.
When anxiety reaches a certain level, a person may experience:
- Sweating and chills
- Dry mouth
- Hot flashes
Some of the enclosed spaces that trigger anxiety are:
- Subway trains
Do you have Claustrophobia?
Keep reading this blog to keep yourself under control while on the plane.
Allow yourself lots of time
According to official guidelines, you should arrive at least 2 hours before the flight.
However, claustrophobia can expand that window a bit to avoid fears later on.
Drink as much water as you can. Moreover, try to eat some light snacks. To stay calm, it is essential to maintain hydration and blood sugar.
Avoid drinking caffeine and alcohol during the flight. Alcoholic drinks can increase your anxiety.
Knowing what to expect in advance helps you feel more relaxed, alleviating troubles caused due to claustrophobia. Many airlines have websites showing seating diagrams. Look at the diagram and according to your comfort, select a seat. It is advised to select a seat in the front part of the plan so that you can quickly exit after landing.
Some people with claustrophobia prefer aisle seats while others feel better in a window seat – allows them to see out.
How to Cope with its Symptoms?
The therapists can teach you techniques to overcome anxiety while flying. The strategies could be:
- Breathing exercises
Stay Active in Airport Security
Airport security regulations vary daily. So, visit their website to know the latest laws and regulations concerning checked luggage. Pack your luggage carefully to avoid harassment later on.
It is advised to take an iPad or laptop and you on your flight or watch the in-flight movie.
When traveling with your friends, engage yourself in a conversation. You can discuss any current affairs or anything else to distract yourself. Practice coping strategies
Some of the strategies are:
If the seat belt light is off, it is advised to walk around on the plane.
Go to restrooms and wash your face with cold water.
Keep practicing the relaxation techniques to keep yourself calm.
Ask for help
Flight attendants can handle any type of flight difficulties such as anxiety attacks. They provide you proper assistance with your problem.
Breathe for Relaxation
Take a deep breath. I know you must be thinking of how breath can help you? But it does. Concentrating on your breathing somewhere distracts you from your phobia. Moreover, when you breathe, think something good. Finish your thought with ‘calm’ as you exhale slowly.
It is always advised to take a deep breath whenever you begin to feel stressed or panicky.
Depending on the reason for your trip, you will need to pack a suit or bridesmaid dress as special items that can only be worn once. You may need to check your luggage as needed, but try to keep it to a minimum. Different things are needed for all types of travel, so you will need different things for everyone.
When curetting your packing list, you should keep an eye on the length of your trip and determine the amount from there. Consider which bags are best suited for travel, whether it’s an international holiday exchange or if you’re using a budget airline.
Even if you have only one or more reservations, you should keep a copy of your itinerary in your luggage. If you are traveling with an electronic ticket, print out the information that your flight brings with it.
Once you’ve overcome your flying anxiety, next-up is booking a hotel room, right? Wrong; instead, consider house swapping with another family while you stay in their residency for a few days or weeks. This is home away from home, and you don’t have to stay in a not-so spacious hotel room or burn a hole in your pocket by booking a high-end hotel room. House swapping presents you the opportunity to have the vacation of your dreams anywhere in the US, and that too for free.