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  • Writer's pictureKathryn Stagg

Anxiety Behind the Wheel

Updated: Dec 16, 2019

Photo by paje victoria on Unsplash

For most people, driving can be a stressful experience from time to time, but for some people, it can be a stressful experience all the time. In an article for The Sydney Morning Herald, Caitlin Fitzsimmons shines a light on those drivers for whom driving is an anxiety-inducing experience each and every time they are behind the wheel.

""I call it 'driving anxiety', but that can vary from heightened anxiety while driving, to avoiding driving altogether," said Dr. Triffitt of High Street Psychology in Hobart.

For Dr. Triffitt, the clinical psychologist interviewed in the piece, says that one of the biggest concerns is not just that driving can be so debilitating for some individuals, but that they may never speak up or seek help because of shame. In places where driving culture is the norm, many people don't feel comfortable sharing their unease with driving. And yet, as the article mentions, driving anxiety is something that can easily be treated.

Seeking treatment for driving anxiety is important. While we might think of anxiety as enhancing our ability to respond to what's happening on the road, that is not always the case. Anxiety is often a state of dangerous agitation, and on the road, that agitation can result in dangerous mistakes.

One tip provided by Dr. Triffitt:

"Nervous drivers could also benefit from a few professional lessons to consolidate and build up evidence of confidence."

The full article by Caitlin Fitzsimmons can be found here.


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