Learning about the fear of sharks is important to find inner peace, taking control of your life being rid of inhibitions.
Shark fear is commonly known as galeophobia, when a person has a fear of sharks they will typically shy away from water activities, like I did, where there was any potential danger of encountering sharks. This is a really real debilitating fear that is often passed on to other relatives and friends especially children. Other factors that people who fear sharks will normally prevent, include watching any movies or see pictures of sharks, as to them this in itself can be overwhelming. So why do people fear sharks?
Why people Fear Sharks
It’s easy to accept that many men, women and kids particularly, fear sharks and shark attacks. Just the appearance of a shark can be quite frightening to many people worldwide as we look at their body shape, having their mouths partially open, exposing rows of sharp teeth like steak knives. This mental image reinforces the fact they’re silent, finely tuned predators, which have evolved predating the Jurassic era, cruising the oceans depths seeking prey. Sharks can attack with enormous force inflicting horrific wounds to victims which may have been confused for their normal prey or food source.
The main reason people suffer with shark phobia called (galeophobia) is seeing how they assault victim or victims, with death cold looking eyes which lack any emotion because they tear flesh from the bone. Media hype is the next most significant factor that creates fear in people about sharks, with prime examples of this being the way the media plays on words of the ones that have fallen victim to a shark attack, or jump the gun in a story including the term shark as they understand that this plays on people’s emotions. Throughout the years we have been trained and accustomed to believe that sharks are the enemy which are out to kill people, whereas that is far from the truth.
Signs and Symptoms, Shark Stress
Speaking from a personal perspective after being attacked by a shark, panic is an involuntary response which can be purchased on by the sight of sharks or even talk about sharks from other people as this brings back pictures that are too gruesome to confront. Following my attack I found it quite tough to deal with or hear people talking about sharks in the initial transitional period, as I learned more about sharks and how to cope with the fear I had. Even going to the beach standing in water up to my knees was terrifying as each motion, or sight that I saw, my head was telling me that they were sharks and that I had to get out of the water.
Some of the most common signs that individuals will give off include reluctance to talk about the “shark topic”, have an elevated heart rate in addition to becoming very nervous or anxious. Dizziness and metal distress is all part of the phobia that may lead to stuttering, sleepless nights, shakes, cold sweats and nightmares as you relive the experience you’ve had or an experience that you may have seen over and over again. I tried not to show my fear to others although I suffered from all of the above as I strived to take care of the fear I was holding on, but with great close family and friends along with professional help talking to other shark researchers I made it through to the other side.
Shark Films and Media Hype
Movies like the Jaws series have reflected the shark in a really bad light portraying them as savage predators’ intent on killing individuals, worsening the plight of the sharks in addition to creating a social endorsement that a dead shark is a fantastic shark. The Jaws series produced a real fear strengthening shark phobia in all that suffer from it, as well as having others follow suit. See the opening phases of this movie with promotional material depicting a young woman using a calm swim, while the monster shark strikes below dragging her into a gruesome death. This movie triggered an unrealistic amount of fear in many people that knew nothing about sharks, Implementing a panic with the attitude that it has to be real.
Media hype is the worst it’s been in many years as every year we hear the exact things, seeing the very same headlines like. “Sharks spotted off coastal beach.” Media companies know that they can get great exposure for tales by making something sound bigger than it actually is as well as playing on the emotions of people. Take the incident per year ago when a suspected Tiger shark attacked a ship, the media fails to tell you that they had been hitting the shark on the head to move it away from the shore! I don’t know about you? But if something or someone was hitting me on the head I would certainly retaliate.
Do not get me wrong here as shark attacks are very scary, especially if we read about surfers, divers, swimmers or others being attacked by sharks and dying because of blood loss, but we must put this into perspective. More people die each year going to the beach in car accidents but we do not ban cars as they are deadly. In fact we have all swum in the sea with sharks in the very near proximity without even knowing they’re there. This is because we don’t generally give off the right odor or appearance of a shark’s prey; nevertheless sharks do attack with the most likely cause being mis-identification of the possible food supply.
Prime examples of this can be seen in locations like Florida, South Africa and Australia where surfers especially, have been attacked. These locations which have greater shark populations should expect there to be shark and human interaction as more people are spending time in or on the sea. It is my firm belief that most of these attacks are brought on by the shark misidentifying the surfer for an example, for a seal. Contained within this page shark attacks on dip world NZ it shows how a shark perceives a surfer, or swimmer in relation to a seal it’s most common food source, especially the Great White (Carcharodon carcharias).
Sharks have been around Pre Jurassic era and they play a vital role in our oceans. Sharks have evolved through the centuries since scientists believe they are very similar but more than likely smaller than those millions of years back. The sharks play an extremely important role keeping an equal balance in the marine eco system, cleaning up dead and dying species that they encounter, in addition to maintaining the fine balance of life in our oceans. If you start to take away the top predators then other dire consequences will occur, with an over abundance of particular species which will intern have an impact on sub species. This can, and probably will, lead to a whole collapse of life above and below, in the food chain order. Just as we humans depend on the sea as a food source that provides us with important minerals and vitamins.
At this present rate and pressure on the shark populations’ many believe 90 percent of all species will be wiped out by 2030. If this happens we’ll surely see more business collapses on a global front including, but not limited to, a direct effect of other life on planet earth.
So ask yourself;”Can we really keep up this strain?” If our seas die and become a jelly filled sludge pond all life on earth may become that of Easter Island. So become proactive, take action, face and find an understanding to combine myself educating others about the importance of sharks. Not only for yourselves but for the benefit of your children and their grandparents.
Divers globally are taking the initiative in hand as we try to show the world the life that we have below the surface. Taking on the role informing others about the dire plight the sharks are confronting as we try to make a difference. Of all of those I respect Rob Stewart manufacturer of Sharkwater! If you have not seen this movie/documentary, then I highly recommend you watch it.
Shark diving operations are playing another vital function as they showcase the sharks close up as well as giving researchers a closer insight into the world of the sharks. There’s so much to learn from this particular species of fish which may be and are directly related, to enhancing the health and well being of humans.