Many people with chronic illnesses or other health concerns need frequent infusions, blood draws, or other interactions with needles. However, what happens if you have a fear of needles? Knowing there is a necessary treatment that requires you to face something you are afraid of can feel debilitating. This article discusses how to face your fear of needles and what to do to make things easier in the future.
Fear of Needles: Trypanophobia
The technical name for an intense fear or phobia around needles is trypanophobia. While many people may get nervous before getting a shot or blood draw, trypanophobia is different. The response is usually more intense with prominent symptoms and can sometimes prevent proper medical treatment. If someone is afraid of needles, even the thought of a potential procedure can cause a strong reaction. Trypanophobia is common in children who are not used to needles and do not like the sensation, especially when it’s unexpected.
Causes of Trypanophobia
Generally, there is usually no known cause or reason for some people developing phobias. The same is true if you are afraid of needles. However, some circumstances can make it more likely to develop a phobia. These can include other phobias, a history of anxiety, and traumatic life events.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
If you or someone you love has a fear of needles, there are usually some recognizable symptoms. These include:
- Avoiding medical care, especially if it involves needles
- Racing heart
- Anxious Thoughts
- Panic attacks
A mental health specialist is usually the one to diagnose someone with trypanophobia.
Tips to Face Your Fear of Needles
If you are afraid of needles, here are some tips you can follow to help lessen your fear over time. Learning more about a procedure can make it seem less daunting. This includes understanding why using a needle is important and why and how it can promote healing and comfort, especially if you have a chronic illness. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is another strategic tool to consider. CBT is a process of reorganizing and evaluating your thoughts, which is effective with phobias and fears. Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for a numbing cream before your injection. This can reduce or even block the sensation from the needle and make the procedure more comfortable for you.
How to Support a Loved One with Trypanophobia
If you care for someone with trypanophobia, your support is greatly needed. As much as possible, attend appointments or medical procedures involving needles with your loved one. Keep a calm, steady demeanor throughout the process. You can also work with medical providers to discuss solutions to ease your loved one’s fear of needles. Your support can make all the difference.
Looking for pharmacy solutions to help you live as comfortably as possible with a chronic illness or medical condition? Mylyfe Specialty Pharmacy is here for you. Email email@example.com to learn more.