West Common Lane Teaching Practice will no longer prescribe sedating drugs called benzodiazepines (diazepam/lorazepam/temazepam or midazolam) for the use of treating fear of flying.
There are a number of very good reasons why prescribing this drug is not recommended:
- The use of benzodiazepines cause longer reaction times & slow thinking, which during a flight will put the passenger at significant risk of not being able to act in a manner which could save their life in the event of an emergency.
- The use of benzodiazepines has the potential to increase the risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis)
- The sedating effects can reduce respiratory function which has the potential to be life threatening; even more so if there is a combination with alcohol.
- There is the possibility of increased aggression by patients taking benzodiazepines. This therefore has potential to put other occupants of the aircraft at risk.
- Benzodiazepines are not recommended for people with phobic states.
- For some countries it is illegal to import these drugs and so the passenger will need to use a different strategy for the homeward bound journey and /or any subsequent legs of the journey.
We understand that the fear of flying can be extremely frightening for some patients therefore, West Common Lane Teaching Practice recommends that patients who have fear of flying, consider attending one of the ‘fear of flying’ courses. These are run by several major airlines and sometimes by local airports. We are unfortunately unable to recommend any specific courses.
Alternatively we have listed some useful websites below which you may find helpful:
Support for patients to stay healthy and live well with a long-term condition
These resources are to support patients in optimising their self-care and management, improving proactive condition management and increasing patient and public awareness of staying well and living healthy.
The resources for diabetes, heart disease and stroke, general living well and respiratory can be accessed here.
Orcha is a health apps library which lists clinically approved and recommended apps to help you manage your health and wellbeing. It includes apps that can help you be more active, manage your mental wellbeing, long term conditions and much more.
You can take a look at the recommended apps available, on the Humber health app website.