Swimming in the pool or sea is common leisure. Hence, it is also a popular as exercise or sports. Yet, we cannot have these activities without water. But not all are happy with water. At least 60 percent of Americans say that they have a fear of deep water. Also, the level of fear varies from person to person. Kids might be nervous about their first time in a kiddie pool. Later, they may enjoy it with their family or buddies. However, this case is not always the same for other people. These people have intense anxiety when they see open or deep water. The causes of this anxiety may be due to factors in our out the body.
Some people had traumatic experiences in or with water. These events may lead them to have a fear of water, also known as aquaphobia. Therefore, this fear does not only pertain to the fear that is easy to overcome. It refers to constant and intense fear. Additionally, people with this fear will make an effort to avoid getting close to water.
Some of the examples of these traumatic events are:
- Near-drowning due to inability to swim, panic, or fell by accident. Hence, it may also happen to people who had seizures or heart attacks in the water.
- Shark attack. Other creatures like snakes or jellyfish may attack a person. Fear of open water may result from attacks of these water creatures. Also, attacks may happen in bodies of water like the ocean, rivers, lakes, and swamps.
This fear may be a result of one or a series of disturbing experiences. Hearing of a scary or traumatic water experience may also make people afraid of water.
Moreover, there is proof that we may inherit phobias from parents or relatives. If a family member has a phobia or other mental health condition, you may be at risk of having this phobia.
3. Brain Development
Our brain has a fear-response area making it easy for us to overcome it. However, in cases where this area did not develop, a phobia may occur easily.
Fear of water due to rabies is hydrophobia. Likewise, dislike to water is a sign of rabies, and it shows in the later stages of the infection.
Phobias and fears cause anxiety. That’s the reason why signs of phobias may be similar. A person may have aquaphobia if he or she has:
5. Intense Fear
People who fear water have an immediate feeling of anxiety or panic upon the thought of water. This fear may seem persistent or unreasonable to others. Even though there is no threat, the person experiences intense fear of open water.
6. Avoidance of Water
Those who have this kind of fear tend to make an effort to avoid water. You can see this sign in people who avoid going on a trip or vacation with water. Fear of deep water will make them avoid pools or ocean adventures.
When we are afraid, our body releases stress hormones. These hormones make your heart pound. They tell your major sweat glands to get busy. They also alert other sweat glands, such as apocrine glands. We can find these glands in our eyelids and skin. Most of them are in the armpits, groin, and around the nipples.
8. Tight Chest
Extreme fear may lead to anxiety. This feeling may entail intense muscle contractions. Chest pain may follow chest tightness. So, the person with a phobia may also find it hard to breathe.
During this time, your heart rate becomes rapid, and the breathing rate increases. As a result, you may experience nausea. Anxiety may make your stomach queasy or feeling sick.
The common cause of fainting is the reaction to an emotional trigger. It happens when the brain gets a limited amount of blood. In most cases, fainting is not a serious health concern. But for people with serious health conditions or heart problems, this sign is serious. A doctor or health care provider must attend to people with these conditions.
Fear is a natural human emotion. They can be healthy or harmful. It makes us aware of threats and danger, making us safe. It can be harmful if you become more cautious than you need to. If it affects your daily life, look for help on how to react to it.