What is the meaning of Thalassophobia and what are some things you should know about phobias?
THALASSOPHOBIA – While some love the ocean, some just don’t and this fear is called thalassophobia, here are some other things about this.
Johns Hopkins Medicine defined phobia as the “uncontrollable, irrational, and lasting fear of a certain object, situation, or activity”.
And someone who has an intense fear of something may go to lengths and even beyond their capacity just to avoid that specific place, situation, or object that causes it.
The 10 most common phobias are:
- Social Phobias
- Agoraphobia – the fear of open spaces
- Acrophobia – fear of heights
- Pteromerhanophobia – fear of flying
- Claustrophobia – fear of enclosed spaces
- Entomophobia – fear of insects
- Ophidiophobia – fear of snakes
- Cynophobia – fear of dogs
- Astraphobia – fear of storms
- Trypanophobia – fear of needles
And another phobia that’s not entirely common but famous is thalassophobia. This is one’s fear of the ocean or other types of large bodies of water that are dark, deep, and dangerous. Among the common symptoms are a racing heart, shortness of breath, rapid breathing, lightheadedness, sweating, dizziness, nausea, and a sense of imminent doom.
People with this phobia are not ultimately afraid of the water that lurks underneath it. The causes of this depend. It could be because of genetics, past experiences, or one’s upbringing.
Under the upbringing, among the factors include having a family member with this phobia or other phobias, your type of personality, a traumatic personal experience, and hearing the fearful stories about this from other people.
This fear can be triggered by thinking of, going to, or seeing the ocean. A 2014 study showed that people with specific phobias may be triggered or suffer anxiety just by the sight of their specific fear even if it’s just in a photo.
The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has these guidelines before diagnosing someone to having a phobia:
- Marked fear or anxiety about a specific object or situation.
- The phobic object or situation almost always provokes immediate fear or anxiety.
- The fear or anxiety is out of proportion to the actual danger posed by the specific object or situation and to the socio-cultural context.
- The phobic object or situation is actively avoided or endured with intense fear or anxiety.
- The fear, anxiety, or avoidance causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
- The fear, anxiety, or avoidance is persistent, typically lasting for 6 months or more.
An effective way to overcome this phobia is undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy. There are also medications to help someone manage their anxiety symptoms and virtual reality exposure therapy.
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