What is the fear of Shipwrecks called? Yes it is Submechanophobia
Submechanophobia is a fear or aversion to submerged man-made objects or structures such as sunken ships, aircraft, submerged machinery, underwater pipelines, or submerged ruins. This phobia may be related to a fear of the unknown, fear of drowning, or fear of large or unfamiliar objects.
The name is taken from the Latin word ‘sub’, which means ‘under’, and the Ancient Greek terms, ‘μηχανή’ and ‘φόβος’, which translate to ‘machine’ and ‘fear’, respectively. When placed together, these words translate to the term, ‘fear of machines under [water]’.
Submechanophobia is not an officially recognized phobia by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), but it is a term that has been coined to describe this particular fear. People who experience submechanophobia may have symptoms such as anxiety, panic attacks, nausea, sweating, or rapid heartbeat when exposed to submerged man-made objects.
Submechanophobia can be treated through exposure therapy, where the individual is gradually exposed to the feared object or situation in a controlled environment. Other treatment options may include cognitive-behavioral therapy, relaxation techniques, and medication.
Do you have Submechanophobia?
Do you feel uneasy catching sight of an abandoned shipwreck, submerged in the ocean or a lake? Do you feel squeamish seeing statues under the sea?
Does viewing this photograph make you feel afraid?
These may seem like silly questions to some, but to others, they are very real and can be extremely distressing.
The very thought of witnessing a man-made object underwater, either partially or completely, can cause some people to feel intense emotions of terror.
In fact, there is a word for this phobia: submechanophobia.
In this article, we will be delving deeper – no pun intended – into this phobia, looking at what causes it, and why the idea of a half-sunken, or fully-sunken object can cause some people to feel afraid.
So, let’s get into it.
It is worth noting that this phobia isn’t always linked solely to water. Just because someone has submechanophobia, it does not mean that they are afraid of swimming, or jumping into the ocean. It isn’t a fear of the water called aquaphobia, aquatic wildlife or the deep, darkness of the sea.
If you do feel afraid of the aforementioned subjects, you may suffer from thalassophobia instead.
Submechanophobia is the fear of man-made structures that, by all means, do not belong in the ocean. Some of these structures include sunken ships, abandoned submarines, and/or statues that were built, or have fallen, into the ocean.
This is an irrational fear, but one that affects many people around the world.
In fact, according to research done by the University of California, San Diego, over 20% of Americans reported having experienced submechanophobia. This number rises to nearly 40% when considering those who live near bodies of water.
Fears involved in Submechanophobia
Submechanophobia can involve various fears, including:
- Fear of the unknown: The fear of not knowing what is lurking beneath the water’s surface, especially when the submerged object is large or unfamiliar.
- Fear of drowning: The fear of being trapped or engulfed by a submerged object, which can cause panic and anxiety.
- Fear of enclosed spaces: The fear of being in an enclosed space, such as a sunken ship or submarine, can trigger feelings of claustrophobia.
- Fear of injury or death: The fear of injury or death due to the presence of sharp or dangerous objects on submerged structures or the risk of suffocation or drowning.
- Fear of the supernatural: The fear that submerged objects may be haunted or associated with supernatural or paranormal phenomena, such as ghost ships or underwater ruins.
The specific fears and triggers involved in submechanophobia can vary from person to person, and the severity of the phobia can also vary. It is important to seek help from a mental health provider if submechanophobia is interfering with daily life or causing significant distress.
How To Cope With Submechanophobia
Since most people do not live in or near the ocean, the fear of submerged things provides minimal difficulties in day-to-day activities for most people. This makes diagnosing the fear as a phobia challenging.
Some people may discover that they have submechanophobia while visiting an aquarium, or even watching a movie about the sea. Unless you are a professional deep-sea diver, the likelihood of you ever witnessing a sunken ship with your own eyes is fairly slim.
However, despite this phobia being an irrational one, it does not mean that your fear is invalid.
If you find yourself experiencing this type of anxiety, seek professional help. There are several treatments available, including medication, therapy, and behavioral modification that can help you overcome your fears.
While there are no real statistics on how many people suffer from submechanophobia, the number is likely higher than most realize.
If you are feeling any kind of apprehension around bodies of water, especially if you have never visited them before, you may be suffering from submechanophobia.
Luckily, unless you live close to the ocean, or work at an aquarium, you won’t have to deal with these feelings very often.
However, if you find yourself becoming increasingly stressed about these scenarios on a daily basis, e.g., seeing submerged objects in a movie, then you should consider speaking to your doctor.
That was our short summary of submechanophobia. We hope that you found this article useful. If you would like to find out more, we recommend that you keep going with your research, perhaps speaking to a professional in this field.
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