THE sight and sound of the sea crashing against the shore isn’t relaxing for everyone – it’s some people’s idea of hell.
For aquaphobics, there is nothing worse than the sight, feel or thought of water. We explore the condition here…
Getty – Contributor It’s not uncommon for people to have a fear of water,and it can manifest in many different ways
What is aquaphobia?
Aquaphobia is a having a “fear of water that is uncontrollable or that interferes with everyday life”.
That could mean anything from being afraid of the open sea, or feeling uneasy when it rains.
It can also mean having a fear of being out of your depth when swimming in a pool or the ocean.
What causes fear of water?
Aquaphobia is usually triggered by a past traumatic experience with or in water.
Someone might have almost drowned, been pushed in to a pool or the sea. or fallen off a boat or deck.
Others simply don’t like not knowing what else is in the water with them, be worried about sharks or other sea creatures, or have simply picked up a fear from one of their parents.
Getty – Contributor Some people are afraid to be immersed in water, others are scared of rain
What are the symptoms of aquaphobia?
As the phobia is so broad there aquaphobics may display many different symptoms.
According to All About Counselling: “While a non-swimmer might be afraid of deep water, people generally understand that this is a logical fear of drowning. However, phobias by definition are irrational. Those suffering from Aquaphobia often feel anxiety around bodies of water ranging from lakes to a bathtub.
“Sufferers might know that drowning in their bathtub is unlikely, but they still can’t help but feel fear, anxiety or dread when around any body of water.”
Getty – Contributor There are many reasons why people become afraid of water, but it’s mostly connected to a previous bad incident
Other symptoms include extreme avoidance of bodies of water of all size; feelings of dread, fear or anxiety when faced with the sight or thought of water; poor hygiene caused by an aversion to bathing.
For some people they might simply be afraid to put their head in the water, but some people might have panic attacks when near or thinking about being near water.
What is the difference between aquaphobia and hydrophobia?
A man with rabies demonstrates signs of hydrophobia
Hydrophobia also refers to a fear of water, but generally this term is used when speaking about people or animals who are in the latter stages of a rabies infection.
It refers to an infected person going in to an agitated panic when seeing water.
This is because they can’t swallow due to the virus causing a huge pain in their throats, but still having a huge thirst.
Is there a cure for aquaphobia?
People suffering from aquaphobia can be greatly helped by a qualified therapist or psychologist.
It’s also possible for people to overcome their fears if they have swimming lessons from a patient instructor and take things slowly.
What celebrities sufferer from aquaphobia?
Andi Peters overcame his fear of water to go snorkelling in the Maldives while plugging a GMB competition.
The 47-year-old burst in to tears after snorkelling in some shallow water in front of the ITV cameras.
He’s not the only star who has battled their aquaphobia.
Baywatch star Carmen Electra was forced to tackle her fears ahead of her starring role in Baywatch, and Winona Ryder sought help ahead of her under water scene in Alien: Resurrection.
Andi Peters cries on Good Morning Britain as he overcomes his fear of water