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What Is The Phobia Of The Ocean

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Loneliness And Social Isolation

What is Thalassophobia? Watch Here to Find Out

People who experience the symptoms of Anxiety and fear of suffering a panic attack sometimes try to avoid public gathering or other social events due to the fear that they might be found to have phobias. Generally they want to live alone and get themselves isolated from the society or minimum exposure to the society.

Coping With The Fear Of The Ocean

Steven Gans, MD is board-certified in psychiatry and is an active supervisor, teacher, and mentor at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Thalassophobia is a type of specific phobia that involves a persistent and intense fear of deep bodies of water such as the ocean or sea. What makes this phobia different than aquaphobia, the fear of water?

Where aquaphobia involves a fear of water itself, thalassophobia centers on bodies of water that seem vast, dark, deep, and dangerous. People are not afraid of the water so much as they are afraid of what lurks beneath its surface.

While thalassophobia is not recognized as a distinct disorder by the DSM-5, the diagnostic manual of mental disorders used by psychiatrists and other mental health professionals, its symptoms may fall under the diagnostic criteria for specific phobias.

The term thalassophobia steps from the Greek thalassa and phobos .

According to the National Institute of Mental Health , phobias are the most common type of mental illness in the United States. While specific phobias themselves are quite common among the general population, it is unknown how many people have thalassophobia.

Specific phobias tend to be one of five different types:

  • Animal type
  • Situational type
  • Other

How Can I Move Forward

If you have thalassophobia, it may feel debilitating. However, you should know that it is one of the easier mental health challenges to overcome. Through support, exposure, and therapy, you will one day be able to enjoy swimming at the beach or boat rides on the lake with your family and friends.

Find Support

Finding like-minded support groups can be extremely beneficial when working toward overcoming thalassophobia. Reddit is a great resource for an online support group; you’ll quickly find you’re not alone. If you’ve never been on Reddit before, it may be helpful to know that the site is divided into separate forums called “subreddits.” Each subreddit is dedicated to a specific theme. The Reddit forum for thalassophobia can be found at r/thalassophobia.

In this Reddit forum, people bond with each other by confronting one of their deepest fears. They post the very images and videos that scare them from the safety of their computers or phones. In doing so, they become more comfortable with the sea and its lifeforms without having to be anywhere near a body of water.

Face Your Fears In Person

Another way to overcome thalassophobia is to face the fear head on. If your fear stems from not being able to swim in deep water, sign up for swimming classes. If you’re worried about sea creatures, visit them at an aquarium. If you’re able to look directly at your fears, you may be surprised by how quickly you’re able to move past them.

Professional Help for Thalassophobia

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How To Get Help For A Child

Children have some of the highest rates of phobias, so many parents may experience the need to find treatment for their children.

A trusted pediatrician can start the process, or you can contact other parents that have had successful stints of mental health treatments. Make sure the child knows that they are not doing anything wrong or bad. Instead, you are just doing what they need to have a happier, lower-stress life.

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Its Time To Vanquish Your Phobia Of The Ocean: Treatment & Cure

Heres the thing, our system does not treat or cure your fear. Modifying your awareness is a technique you have to learn to master for yourself. As you go through this process, we will help you with educational information when you need it.

This process has proven procedures for overcoming rage, fear, depression, remorse and feelings of apprehension and helps you gain self-assurance, peace and happiness. You have dealt with these emotions haunting you long enough. Are you ready to interrupt the cycle of destructive thinking?

Vanquish Phobia of The Ocean Today.

Talasophobia : Symptoms Causes And Treatment

Although the human being is an animal species adapted to terrestrial life, the seas and oceans are very present in our lives .

The simple fact that most of the surface of our planet is covered by seawater means that we must adapt to the presence of these large liquid surfaces, large masses that can be used to navigate and to find natural resources in it, but in certain Contexts can be a threat.

In this article we will talk about the facet of the ocean that we experience with more sensation of danger and anxiety: the thalassophobia .

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Why Do People Develop Thalassophobia

Some people develop this fear of deep water thanks to prior experiences, such as a near drowning or getting caught in a riptide. Others get it through observational exposure, by watching people who have a fear of the sea or had a bad experience in the ocean. Other folks are influenced by media reports of drownings, boat accidents or shark attacks. Then of course, there’s “Jaws,” a movie about a shark that terrorizes a New England tourist town. The blockbuster has caused many people to be afraid of swimming in the ocean.

There’s also a genetic component for phobias, so if a relative has thalassophobia you’re more likely to develop it, as well. Especially if you grew up around the person.

“From an evolutionary perspective, it makes sense that humans would develop a tendency to fear and avoid deep water because of all the associated risks,” emails Dr. Martin Antony, professor of psychology at Ryerson University in Toronto, and co-author of “The Anti-Anxiety Workbook.””We are essentially ‘programmed’ through evolution to fear some situations more easily than others .”

He notes that this term thalassophobia “does not appear in any official diagnostic nomenclature. With very few exceptions , phobia experts do not use the hundreds of Greek and Latin names for phobias that are out there in the media.”

Signs And Symptoms Of Thalassophobia

Thalassophobia Explained

Symptoms anxiety and fear of any specific phobia can be seen in physical and emotional behavior.

The physical symptoms include- ;;Nausea, shortness of breath, seating lightheadedness, increased heart rate, rapid breathing.

The emotional symptoms of thalassophobia- symptoms may be seen in a person of being overwhelmed, have a sense of doom, a person may feel detached from the situation, a person want to escape the site.

The extreme experience of fear of thalassophobia can be happen when you have the direct contact with the sea or other water sources. But this is not necessary that person only can experience by direct contact, some of the individuals may experienced fear just by imagining the ocean, looking at a photograph of the ocean or pool or lake.

Generally a response of any phobia is greater than a feel of nervousness or anxious. The fear is response similar to the feeling of facing something dangerous where you have to decide either to fight the situation of flight from the site.

In this situation a vast series of reactions that your body gives and you try to deal the fear by avoiding of enduring or run afar from the dangerous threat. This kind of feeling is experienced by the person having thalassophobia when they see the water body or ocean.

They started to feel nervous just before going on ferry boat or any other form of water travel. The excessive nervousness turns into anxiety and physical and emotional symptom have been seen.

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Why Am I So Scared Of The Ocean

There are many reasons why you could be scared of the ocean. One of these reasons is a past traumatic event that you might have experienced. For example, if at one time you almost drowned in the ocean from a heavy tide or you were part of a shipwreck, you might become scared of the ocean. There are a number of traumatic events that can happen at sea which can cause you to be scared.

You can also be scared of the ocean if you have been watching a lot of movies of people getting stranded at sea or getting attacked in the ocean. For example, The Meg a movie about people who get attacked by sharks while in the ocean. There are many other such movies. If you have the fun of such then you will probably be scared of the ocean because you believe that it may happen to you.

You can also become scared of the ocean if you have grown up with parents who gave you too many cautionary warnings about going into or near the water. If your parents are scared of the ocean, they are most likely to pass on the fear to you.

Thalassophobia: Do You Fear The Deep Ocean

For some, the ocean is the inspiration for many beautiful poems, songs and pieces of literature. But for others, it’s a big old watery nightmare, just waiting to swallow unsuspecting humans up. Those people experience thalassophobia, a persistent, intense fear of large, deep bodies of water.

“It is different from the fear of water as aquaphobia can cause distress with small amounts of water, while thalassophobia specifically involves larger quantities of water,” says Dr. Patricia Celan, a psychiatry resident at Dalhousie University in Canada, via email.

So, someone with this condition might be just fine hitting the neighborhood swimming pool, but a dip in the Gulf of Mexico is totally out of the question. However, thalassophobia is exceedingly rare. “Demographics for thalassophobia are unavailable, but at least tens of thousands of people are believed to have the condition worldwide,” Celan says. That’s much less than aquaphobia, which affects 2 to 3 percent of the world’s population , according to a study in Frontiers in Psychology.

Still, thalassophobia can be pretty terrifying for those who do suffer from it. Here’s the rundown on why it develops, how it presents and how it can be treated.

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Thalassophobia Is The Abnormal Persistent And Irrational Fear Of The Sea Or Large Deep And Dark Bodies Of Water

Do you suffer from this phobia? How do you know you have it?

For some people, the ocean is a terrifying place – it makes them uneasy, nervous, unsettled, and anxious.

They could’ve been born with the feeling of not wanting to be near or in the ocean, or it might be something you never knew you had and only discovered later in life.

The fear of the ocean is something that can make us feel really uncomfortable. Because we’re land creatures, we tend to be cautious about the still unknown water world.

In extreme cases, people develop an anxiety disorder. And, believe it or not, phobias are among the most common mental illnesses in modern societies.

Parallel Phobias And Treatment

Pin by Thalassophobia Syndrome on Thalassophobia Syndrome ...

There are;other types of anxiety disorders associated with water that may help explain the persistent fear of the ocean. And this one, in particular, is a relatively common phobia.

Bathophobia , cymophobia , megalohydrothalassophobia , and aquaphobia may also evolve into thalassophobic reactions.

But there are also people on the absolute opposite side of the spectrum.

A thalassophile, i.e., a lover of the ocean, is someone who fully enjoys living by the sea and cannot stay away from the saltwater for too long.

Do you have thalassophobia? Worry not. The fear of the ocean and deep water can be treated or mitigated through cognitive behavioral therapy.

A mental health professional will help you identify the origin of your phobia, replace negative thoughts with positive associations, and teach you to manage your emotional and physical responses to fear.

Overcoming this fear response will definitely improve your quality of life and allow you to enjoy the pleasures of the ocean and open water.

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What Is Thalassophobia And How Is It Treated

Medically Reviewed By: Whitney White, MS. CMHC, NCC., LPC

As numerous documentaries can attest, large bodies of water are to be respected; canyons, underwater cities, and coastal communities can all speak to the power of water and the destruction it is capable of. Water can be beautiful, too: it is home to some of the most beautiful creatures yet found on earth and provides many health benefits to those who live near it. Despite all of this, some experience dread, terror, and even nausea in response to large bodies of water, the ocean, especially, and these individuals are said to have thalassophobia or irrational fear of the sea.

Symptoms of Thalassophobia

Thalassophobia is a phobia of the sea or other large bodies of water. Like its title, ‘phobia’ might suggest, thalassophobia is characterized by overwhelming anxiety about the sea or bodies of water. This anxiety can occur when you are near these areas and might preclude anyone with the condition from learning how to swim. This anxiety can also occur when you think of the ocean or another body of water and cause panic attacks, even when you are hundreds of miles away from a large body of water.

Some people with thalassophobia will experience panic attacks even if avoidance is not engaged and might have trouble controlling fear responses when they encounter images of the sea, hear a story involving the ocean, or bear witness to an anecdote about drowning or other water-induced deaths.

What Is A Phobia?

Dealing With A Thalassophobia

Phobias have the power to create incredibly high levels of stress and anxiety. When these symptoms emerge and go unchecked, panic attacks can surface.

Panic attacks are discrete periods of high anxiety that lead to significant physical and mental health effects like:2

  • Heart pounding and palpitations

Treatment can help deal with a thalassophobia-induced panic attack in two ways:

  • Teaching new relaxation techniques and coping skills to respond more effectively to panic symptoms
  • Address the underlying symptoms of depression and anxiety that contribute to thalassophobia
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    What Is The Treatment Of Thalassophobia

    To overcome ocean fear there is some kind of therapies that are being used to treat fear of the ocean phobia.

    Hypnotherapy: This therapy will involve a deep relaxation under the proper guidance of a professional and skilled practitioner. The therapist will work to find the root cause behind the phobia of the ocean and will proceed to next accordingly.

    Neuro-linguistic Programming therapy : This therapy will help to understand the way your mind creates reality. This will help the phobic to recreate his mind to create a positive response in an effective way.

    Cognitive behavior therapy : This is a type of talking therapy that can be used to treat Thalassophobia.

    In this therapy, the therapist will expose your fear gradually and will treat them by talking with the person to provide him enough energy to deal with the fear.

    Making Connections Between Theory And Reality

    What is Thalassophobia? 3 Things That Make The Ocean Terrifying


    Definition of a phobia is an extreme or irrational fear of an aversion to something. Individual may have been born with a phobia, but, like me, majority of the people who possesses some kind of phobia, begins to recognize their aversion the later years. I personally believe that I didnt have a phobia when I was born. I could jump off a bungee at an age of 12 and I was capable of walking alone in the darkness as a child. However, as I start to see, visualize and think world in a more complicated and sophisticated way, I began to feel that I possess the phobia named Thalassophobia.

    Thalassophobia is a phobia of the sea. Although when I was little, maybe around the age of 5 to 10, I didnt have this phobia. But as I became a teenager, I, now feel this phobia is part of my mentality. The main reason behind this paranoia was after watching the movie called the Titanic. Even after watching movies like Paranormal Activity or other horror movies that are related to our daily lives, I was never affected. However, there was something about Titanic that made me fear the ocean. It was because of the scenery where dead corpses were floating in the ocean, drowned. Although I am capable of swimming in a pool, I cannot place my body into a rivers, oceans, and lakes.

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    Causes & Triggers Of Thalassophobia

    Currently, experts are not certain what causes some people to have phobias. There is a strong belief that a combination of negative life experiences, genetics, environment, brain functioning, and learning patterns could create thalassophobia.

    Dr. Celan notes, Anxiety tends to run in families, and phobias can as well. A persons genetic vulnerability can combine with a negative life experience that works as a catalyst, leading to a fear that is significant enough to be considered a mental disorder. For example, if someone has a tendency to be anxious and then witnesses a close friend drown in the ocean, that person may begin to overvalue the idea that the ocean is unsafe. Over time, that fear magnifies to the extent of causing enough distress or impairment to be considered a phobia.

    Possible causes and triggers of thalassophobia include:3,4

    A person with a strong family history of anxiety who was taught to fear the ocean will be more likely than others to develop an irrational fear of the ocean. The risks are even greater if the person lacks healthy coping skills and supportive loved ones to relieve their stress.

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