Academic journal article Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy

Flying without Fear

Academic journal article Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy

Flying without Fear

Article excerpt

Flying Without Fear Duane Brown. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications (www.newharbinger.com). 1996, 180pp., $13.95.

How many of our clients (and how many of us) have a fear of flying? Apparently, one out of six people has a fear of flying. Many people arrange their travel so that they can drive or take a train to distant locations, often sacrificing the opportunities for vacations, visits to family or friends, and career advancement. The book, Flying Without Fear, by Duane Brown, is a useful, informative, and up-to-date resource for the fearful flier.

Brown correctly distinguishes the range of psychological problems underlying fear of flying. These include aviophobia (the fear the plane will crash), claustrophia, acrophobia (fear of heights) and panic disorder. Much of the book is focused on aviophobia-the fear that the plane will hit turbulence and tumble from the sky.

The book provides a brief, but useful, review of how fear of flying develops and the physiology of fear. Although we probably do not know what the real causes are of fear of flying, it may be useful to help patients recognize that part of these fears may be due to heredity, direct learning, imitation, or information from the media. (I think that planes are counter-intuitive-the idea of something weighing several tons flying through the air seems to run against common sense!)

The book soars (so to speak) in its detailed answers to numerous questions that the author poses that characterize fear of flying. Given the fact that over 10 million flights are made each year in the United States, it may seem remarkable to some that there are so few deaths. …

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