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What Is Vehophobia?

What Is Vehophobia?

It’s normal to feel nervous about sitting behind the wheel again if you’ve recently been in a car accident. But what happens if that anxiety becomes overwhelming?

Vehophobia is an intense and debilitating fear of driving. With the average commute taking 46.6 minutes by car, vehophobia can severely interrupt your ability to work and go about other important tasks. It may feel impossible to go to the grocery store or take your kids to school. 

Dealing with vehophobia isn’t easy, but it is treatable. Understanding the basics of vehophobia, its causes, and treatments can give you the tools you need to seek help.

Vehophobia: Definition and Symptoms

Like most phobias, vehophobia is characterized by acute anxiety in specific circumstances — in this case, driving. 

Some of the most common symptoms of vehophobia include:

  • Tightness in the chest
  • A racing heartbeat
  • Sweating
  • Heavy breathing
  • Lightheadedness
  • An intense feeling of danger

If you experience these symptoms any time you try to drive or think about driving, you may be suffering from vehophobia. This phobia can also go hand-in-hand with other fears, such as amaxophobia — the fear of cars or being in a vehicle — and hodophobia, which is the fear of traveling. 

What Causes Vehophobia?

Over 20% of people who have been in a car accident may develop some form of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This psychiatric condition can manifest as anxiety in certain situations and may even lead to long-term, debilitating fears such as vehophobia. 

While car accidents are the most common cause of vehophobia, it is still possible to develop this fear without having been in a wreck. Witnessing an accident or seeing a loved one harmed in a collision, for example, could trigger acute stress when trying to operate a vehicle. 

How To Overcome a Fear of Driving

Anxiety can be debilitating, and it may feel impossible to drive again if you have vehophobia. However, there are some steps you can take to recover and return to your normal life. 

Support Groups

Vehophobia is often an isolating experience. Friends and family may not know what you’re going through or how to help. Surrounding yourself with people in a similar situation is a great way to build an empathetic support system.

Support groups are meant to facilitate your healing by allowing you to share your experiences with people who understand. In a group setting, you may also learn recovery tips from others who have been where you are. 


Licensed therapists can help you identify what triggers your vehophobia and provide you with the tools you need to cope with the stress. Various forms of psychotherapy have been shown to help patients with anxiety and PTSD, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and exposure therapy. 


In conjunction with therapy and support groups, a therapist or doctor may also recommend anti-anxiety medications. These can help you handle the physical symptoms of acute stress. 

Can You Recover Damages For Vehophobia in Florida?

When most people think about recovering compensation after a car accident, they think of medical bills or property damage

However, if you have developed a severe fear of cars or driving due to an accident that was not your fault in Florida, you may be entitled to damages for:

You may also be able to recover compensation for things like therapy bills and medications, especially if your vehophobia is interfering with your ability to work.

What To Do If You Have Vehophobia

Navigating life with vehophobia isn’t easy, but it is possible. Working with a medical professional and therapist can get you started on handling the anxiety, and joining support groups may help you build a network of caring and understanding people. 

If you have been in an auto accident in Florida that triggered your vehophobia and want to recover damages for how it has impacted your life, speaking to a Miami car accident attorney can help you determine your legal options. 

Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm in Miami, FL

If you’ve been injured in an accident in Miami, FL, and need legal help, contact our Miami car accident lawyers at Shaked Law Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free consultation.

Shaked Law Personal Injury Lawyers
20900 NE 30th Ave Suite 715
Aventura, FL 33180
(305) 937-0191