Does anyone have a needle phobia? This is my first pregnancy and i am petrified of needles, ive tried hypnotherapy twice but it didnt work. Anyone have any tips for staying calm?
Or any other phobia in fact? I just would like to know how you conquered it, im worried i'll pass out at my booking in appointment.
Yes, I had CBT with a focus on exposure therapy - there's a few details here: www.nhs.uk/conditions/phobias/treatment/
I wouldn't say I'm "cured" but I can deal with the fear SO much better than I ever could before. I don't think I would have been able to have children without it, as I couldn't get over the phobia.
Definitely mention it to your midwife - I had 'NEEDLE PHOBIA' written all over my notes in huge writing so all the midwives and consultants would know straight away what they were dealing with!
Thank you!!! @littleostrich
I feel so alone with it! It consumes my life, i dont even have pierced ears im so phobic! I am now pregnant so i know i will have to face it but i just dont know how.
DH spent some time in A&E and i passed out when then had to stitch him up, and that wasnt even on my own body
But thank you for your reply its nice to know someone else conquered it!!
My mum had me pinned down as a child to have my ears pierced and I’ve had a pretty bad phobia since. It freaks me out, but over the years I’ve become better. I say I need a minute and totally zone out before they do it - yeah it’s still terrifying but it helps massively
Don't look at it, focus on your breathing. I also bite my knuckle but wouldn't necessarily advise that you do the same!
At the end of my CBT the therapist made a list of ‘guidelines’ (based on our discussions) that she felt would help me stay calm in situations where needles are involved. I think she did it with the intention that I could hand it over to the nurse / relevant person or add it into my notes if I felt I needed to, but I haven’t actually used it. It may be something you can do yourself though, if you felt it would help? You wouldn’t even need to have it written down necessarily, just things to ask politely if you felt it was needed.
It was things like:
- The anticipation causes my anxiety to rise, so try to reduce the waiting time as much as possible; ie. do the blood test at the very start of the appointment (to get it over with!) rather than towards the end.
- Similarly, avoid too much advance notice. During a hospital stay once I was told at 7am I would need a cannula put in, but it wasn’t actually done until 3pm - so I had 8 hours of panic and rising anxiety before the process even began. I would have been much calmer if they’d not told me anything until they actually came in to do it.
- Don’t talk through what they’re doing or give too much detail about what’s going to happen (ie. don’t tell me when you’re trying to find the vein)
- Give me a few minutes to make sure I’m ok after it’s done, don’t rush me out.
Your list might be different but might help you think about ways that would help you stay calm.
Try hypnobirthing - it will help with fear of childbirth generally and help to manage pain and fears relating to pregnancy and childbirth. Takes regular effort on your part but worth doing, and cheaper than £50 an hour CBT.
I did, I'm cured now.
Blood tests were my worst. My gp gave me emla cream to numb the area before I had any blood tests. I used this till I got used to them and knew nothing would happen to me, this was in my late teens, I'm mid 30s now and totally fine having them done although I never watch
Thank you everyone! I know its mind over matter and i need to face it, i just need some strength. I have never felt fear like this before. It started when i was 8 in hospital, they took blood and talked me through everything, even asked me on a scale if 1-10 how much does it hurt!!? What bloody nurse asks a child that! And now i can get rid of the horrible thoughts.
Thanks @littleostrich i think all the points you mentioned would help me, i will pass them on to my midwife. Waiting in the waiting room will be the worst for me i would like to get straight on with it.
Thank you so much everyone i appreciate your comments!
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