Facing the Fear of Crossing Bridges: Coping with Gephyrophobia After a Devastating Shipwreck

Expert in mental health identifies common diagnosis of bridge phobia

Traveling across bridges can be a nerve-wracking experience for some individuals, even though bridge collapses are extremely rare. For people with Gephyrophobia, the fear of crossing bridges is very real and can be overwhelming. A recent ship crash into the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore has only increased this fear, leaving six workers missing and presumed dead.

Mental health therapist Jay Powell explained that witnessing such an event can trigger confirmation anxiety, where a person’s worst fear is confirmed right before their eyes. Powell emphasized that this diagnosis is common and can be challenging to cope with for those affected. In Jacksonville, residents shared their feelings about traveling across bridges in the city. While some, like Neil Weinreb, don’t experience anxiety when crossing most bridges, others like Bernard Tebo express concerns about maritime traffic possibly causing accidents.

To cope with bridge-related anxiety, Powell suggests focusing on a local point or listening to music to distract from feelings of nausea or dizziness. By adopting these coping strategies, individuals can navigate their fear of crossing bridges more effectively. It’s important for those with Gephyrophobia to seek professional help if they are struggling to cope with their anxiety and find new ways to overcome it.

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