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One Size Does Not Fit All
The New York Times
Published: October 1, 2006

To the Editor:

Your article about nervous fliers portrays the medical management of post-9/11 flight fright. But anti-anxiety medication by itself cannot overcome the fear of flying for the majority of flight phobics.

As creator and director of Freedom to Fly, an airport-based fear-of-flying program, I have seen hundreds of nervous fliers turn to techniques including education, meditation, breathing exercises, prayer, willpower and a huge assortment of medications. We know that no single method works for everyone.

No method can erase the anxiety with which flight phobics must learn to cope, and no method can succeed without a major dose of courage.

Martin N. Seif, Ph.D.
New York

The author is associate director of the Anxiety and Phobia Treatment Center at White Plains Hospital Center.