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Overcoming fear of needles, injections in 13 year old DD

(24 Posts)
sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 14:29:56

My DD has an increasing and now overwhelming fear of injections.

Her appointment for orthodontist treatment has come up - she needs 2 teeth taken out (to make space) before they can start. Appointment is booked for moulds etc on 18th September.

She is hysterical at the thought of having 2 teeth out.
She didn't have the HPV jab at school - she was hysterical they couldn't do it.
She needed a filling last year, our lovely kind dentist did it slowly and meticulously without anaesthetic as she just could not stop shaking whenever he picked up the needle.

This has gone beyond "talking some sense" or bribing her.

Any suggestions - she needs the teeth out urgently or we lose the NHS treatment.

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sleepismysuperpower1 Wed 21-Aug-19 17:20:50

my dd had the same thing. she used to scream and would try and run. i sat her down and watched videos like these with her, showing people get injected. she couldn't watch them the first couple of times i put them on, but i did it daily and she gradually started to watch them. i think it helped her to know what was going on when it wasnt happening to her. all the best x

sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:25:43

thanks - i found a fear ladder approach on a hospital website, one of the rungs was watching it happen to other people. feels cruel but will try.

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CaptainJaneway62 Wed 21-Aug-19 17:27:30

Your GP or even the Dentist should be able to prescribe 2 valium tablets one to be taken the night before the treatment and one taken on the day of treatment. They should totally relax her.
My dentist did this for my daughter and she was very relaxed by the time the extractions happened.
The dentist can also use anaesthetic gel on the gums so that she cannot feel the needles going in.

Tableclothing Wed 21-Aug-19 17:31:08

Good advice above. In the long term its also worth trying CAMHS, as her fear is stopping her accessing routine healthcare.

sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:32:14

i did suggest that and was told they often don't work or don't work very well. will be worth a try though. thanks

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sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:33:40

re CAMHS - great idea, do i see the school nurse for that?

I just wish i knew why she was this bad. She hasn't had a bad experience or ever forced to have treatment. She doesn't suffer with anxiety generally, just with doctors/dentists.

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YesQueen Wed 21-Aug-19 17:35:06

This might or might not help but if it does then you can tell it her!!
I was always terrified of needles to the point of being held down for bloods etc, even those little finger prick ones. Add to that the fear of the dentist and it wasn't great
I had check ups and my dentist let me listen to music, if I lifted my hand he would stop instantly. I broke a tooth and was petrified to the point I thought if I crashed my car on the way I wouldn't have to go
It had to come out, so they used numbing gel before the injections. Was completely numb and after that all I felt was pressure. I swear my dentist is a magician because he does injections now and I don't actually feel them
After that tooth was out, I lost all my fear. Think it's because the worst happened and actually it wasn't that bad

YesQueen Wed 21-Aug-19 17:36:07

Posted too soon! Since then I've been through a GA for spinal surgery alone and developed a condition where I have to inject myself weekly
People say oh I couldn't do that, but my other choice is to spend a full day waiting for a nurse to do it )I work FT)

YesQueen Wed 21-Aug-19 17:38:34

And there's this, I've never tried it

sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:39:07

She does have complete trust in our dentist who is super kind but the minute she sees the needle she shakes to the teeth chattering stage. he can't do it.
i think she probably needs to be sedated, properly, but that has to be done at hospital / not by our dentist. If she faced the worst she would probably be much better. It's so irrational. Valium might be the way forward.

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sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:41:24

buzzy looks really interesting - thanks

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Quellium Wed 21-Aug-19 17:48:31

I'm very interested in this as I've had a similar experience with my DS and hit a complete brick wall with help available. He hasn't had his last lot of vaccinations as a result (14) which makes me feel absolutely sick and dreadful.

Littlefish Wed 21-Aug-19 17:48:33

This is really interesting as we are in a similar position. Dd is 14. She has now tried twice to have a blood test, but each time, has had a panic attack and fainted. She also offer to have two teeth removed before she can have braces fitted.

I spoke to our lovely dentist about it, and he has referred her to a clinic about 20 miles away where they will take the teeth out under sedation.

I really hope this works!

sohmohhan Wed 21-Aug-19 17:54:16

I asked re sedation, i'd have to go privately. Initial consulation £159 then the sedation (IV) is £759 plus the cost of extraction. shock

And then of course she'll need to let the orthodontist do the moulds, fit the brace etc which isn't the most comfortable experience having gone through it with DD1.

I think if she wants nice straight teeth she is going to have to overcome her fear somehow.

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Littlefish Wed 21-Aug-19 17:59:22

As far as I know, dd's referral is via the NHS, but now you've posted that, I'd better check! For dd, it's not about the pain, it's about the idea of the needle going in.

Tableclothing Wed 21-Aug-19 18:14:31

CAMHS services vary a great deal from pace to place - yours may not be called CAMHS, could be something else.

They often have different procedures for accepting referrals too - some places you can self-refer, others you would need your GP or school to do it.

MaureenMLove Wed 21-Aug-19 18:20:39

I feel for her, I'm the same and I know it's completely irrational, but at her age she won't get that! I organise all the vaccinations at my school, so that's 300 students per year for the teenage boosters and 150 girls for the HPV (the boys are getting the HPV this year, so 600 teenagers across the year!)

I have some screamers and refusers and no amount of reasoning with them will help. I've found with the majority of them, letting them blast whatever music they want through their head phones, does help them.

Thisismydilemma Wed 21-Aug-19 18:24:35

My ds is 13 and also having 2 teeth extracted for braces. He is also terrified of needles and is being referred for sedation to have them taken out. The nhs waiting list here for sedation is around 9 months though :-/

MerryInthechelseahotel Wed 21-Aug-19 23:15:14

I used to be a hypnotherapist and hypnosis would work very well for this.

FogCutter Wed 21-Aug-19 23:29:30

Another vote for hypnotherapy, really helped with a phobia I had.

Just make sure you use a well qualified/ trained/ experienced hypnotist though, there's a lot out there who are not!

sohmohhan Thu 22-Aug-19 12:57:11

thanks all - will ask around re hypnotherapist, difficult to find on a google search.

@MaureenMLove roughly what % are you unable to immunise as they are freaking out too much?

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MaureenMLove Thu 22-Aug-19 14:01:06

Very, very few. I would say no more than 5 students are complete refusers. Some of course refuse to have it a school and go straight to their doctors, but I'm not party to whether they do actually go to the doctors or not. I purely manage and arrange the space for NSH schools vaccination team to use.

When it comes to mass vaccination though, the team constantly does catch up sessions all year, until they've accounted for every child.

Robs20 Thu 22-Aug-19 14:02:58

What about hypnotherapy? My friend is afraid of needles (to the extent that she faints and has missed many medical procedures). She had hypno and absolutely swears by it. She still doesn’t like needles but can cope now smile

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