This article will brief about Limnophobia. Then it will focus on the symptoms and causes of Limnophobia. Later it will highlight treatment methods of Limnophobia, both psychotherapies, and psychiatric medications.
Limnophobia refers to the fear of lakes. People having this phobia fear that they might get drown in the lake or get sick from the lake or get attacked by something from the lake or in the lake. It has emerged from the Greek word limno which means lake and phobia means fear.
People who suffer from Limnophobia try to never go near a lake and even with a mere thought of being near the lake scares them.
These people often decide to live in a rural area where there is a minimum to no lakes. They might feel achievement in this as they think they have conquered anxiety but this is not the case actually. In the long run, it can create more problems as the root cause has still not been cared for.
SYMPTOMS OF LIMNOPHOBIA:
The main symptom of limnophobia which can be derived from the word phobia itself is intense anxiety and it depends on several factors like genetics, environmental factors and the severity of the condition.
Lack of self-esteem and lack of self-confidence have been seen in these patients, some patients with Limnophobia isolate themselves from lakes and live in the areas that have the least exposure of marshes or lakes. These people are also concerned with lake accidents and statistics.
Some more common symptoms are-
- Anxiety or Panic attacks with a mere thought of the lake
- Breathlessness when being near a lake or inside the lake
- Trembling and shaking of legs when sees a lake near their vicinity
- Feelings of helplessness
- Sweating and Muscle Tension
CAUSES OF LIMNOPHOBIA:
There is no certain cause that has been found so far for Limnophobia, though, there are several factors that contribute to this condition. One factor would be genetics, as a person who has a history of anxiety disorders or phobias are more likely to develop Limnophobia.
Another factor would be the environment in which the person has been brought up. Both are likely to play important roles in developing Limnophobia.
Someone developing a fear of lakes can be because of the involvement in a near-death experience with the lake in his childhood and has been traumatized. Another reason can be, that the person might have seen a lake accident in which he might have lost someone close to him.
It can also be developed due to already suffering from a disorder like obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), like obsession with the dangers of boats, marches or lakes.
There is no particular treatment that has been designed especially for Limnophobia. But some treatments which have been proved to be helpful in anxiety and phobias have been considered to be helpful with Limnophobia as well and those are-
- Talk Therapy-
Talk Therapy can be beneficial for someone suffering from an irrational fear of lakes as it can help the patient to let out all the fears he has in a constructive way and it eventually helps in developing new and more constructive thinking pattern
- Exposure Therapy:
It is one of the most common and effective therapy with patients suffering from anxiety and phobias. It works by having the therapist slowly expose the patient to which he fears ie. a lake in an attempt to desensitize him about it. First, the therapist tries to shows pictures then videos and then the actual lake is shown until it increases anxiety. Slowly the threshold to the fear increases and the fear starts to fade away with time.
- Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) for Limnophobia:
It is an 8-week evidence-based program that offers mindfulness training to help people suffering from anxiety, stress, depression, etc. Mindfulness meditation can significantly help people suffering from limnophobia due to how it will help one in distracting himself from their fear by refocusing their attention on something else, like breathing. This is the most basic and easiest way one can meditate and be in the present.
Exercises have been extremely beneficial for people suffering from anxiety disorders including limnophobia. Cardiovascular exercises can significantly help in reducing one’s stress levels
- Anti-anxiety medications:
These medications are very helpful in preventing panic attacks and anxiety issues. It is very helpful when the condition is very severe. Some common anti-anxiety medications are Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, etc. These medications should be taken only in the supervision of a medical professional.
These medications aren’t only for people who suffer from depression as they can also help people suffering from anxiety disorders such as Limnophobia. Some common antidepressants are Paxil, Zoloft, Lexapro, etc. These types of drugs are taken on a daily basis and can be helpful in preventing panic attacks and daily anxiety issues. But always consider consulting a psychiatrist first before starting or stopping any medications.
This blog has informed about Limnophobia. Then it has focused on the symptoms and causes of Limnophobia. Later it has highlighted treatment methods of Limnophobia, both psychotherapies, and psychiatric medications.
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