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5 Tips on How to Overcome Water Phobia

written by: Nicky LaMarco • edited by: Jacqueline Chinappi • updated: 10/28/2010

One of the most common fears is water phobia. Water phobia, or aquaphobia, can often stem from a bad experience with water in childhood. It’s certainly an understandable fear but it’s also very inconvenient.

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    Practice at Home

    Humans are naturally buoyant. You can test this by taking a bath. Relax your arms completely. Feels them gently rise up to the top of the water, bobbing above your body. This is what your whole human body is made to do. Practice submerging your head and simply feeling relaxed throughout your whole body.

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    Think Positively

    Have pure and good thoughts about water. Think about how good it feels to swim in the ocean, the water warm and the sand cold in your toes, swaying with the gentle waves. Think how good sunlight feels when you’re in the water. Develop a mantra that feels right to you, like “I love water, it is part of the earth like I am” or “Nothing can hurt me as long as I am in the water.” Recite this over and over while thinking good thoughts of water. Don’t be hard on yourself if scary aquaphobic thoughts enter your mind, just gently push those aside and replace them with happier beliefs.

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    Seek Therapy

    A therapist who specializes in phobias can help you tremendously. He or she can talk to you about the origins of your phobia and if applicable prescribe anti-anxiety medication.

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    Knowledge is Power

    Learn about water phobia. Look up book at the library or research it online. Once you realize that this is a real phobia and it is nothing to be ashamed of, that it is in fact a common and understood phobia, you will see how treatable it is. Connect with an online support groups of other water phobics.

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    Reward Yourself

    Is there something you’ve truly been wanting? For each step in getting over your phobia of water treat yourself to something you have been craving. Did you want a new game or a new dress? Tell yourself that once you can submerge your head in the local pool without panic that you can reward yourself with a desired item. Keep up the steps and maybe the final reward will be a trip to a tropical destination where you can wade in the surf all day!

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    Be Consistent in Bettering Yourself

    Conquering a phobia is a long process that involves being dedicated to taking the steps. Researching water phobia, speaking with other sufferers, exploring various treatments, and above all thinking well of yourself are the keys to getting better. The problem with phobias is that they seem insurmountable. Take your time and remember that you are absolutely worth every bit of work it takes to heal and lead a life free of fear.

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    Resources

    "How to Get Rid of Fear of Water", published by howtogetridofstuff.com: http://www.howtogetridofstuff.com/health/how-to-get-rid-of-fear-of-water/

    "Definition of Aquaphobia", published by MedTerms: http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=12180

    "Aquaphobia: The Fear of Water", published by Health Central Anxiety Connection: http://www.healthcentral.com/anxiety/c/22705/71074/aquaphobia-water