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Anyone Else Have Blood-Injection-Injury Phobia?


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Does anyone else here have blood-injection-injury phobia?  The anxiety condition where the sight of blood, needles, or injury, or even talking about it triggers an anxiety response different from other phobias, which is usually a drop in blood pressure, bradycardia, and fainting caused by a vasovagal syncope?

 

I really am scared of needles and blood.  I hate having my blood drawn and it really is bothersome when it comes to explaining this to lab technicians, who should be WELL aware of this condition.  Some treat me like I'm a little kid, or try to convince me not to be anxious, but I honestly have no control over it.  I can try applied tension techniques if I am fainting but I ideally need to lay down and get something cold to drink, preferably with sugar.  The whole feeling is awful.  I even start to avoid having my blood taken for just this reason.  When I think back to surgeries I have had in the past, honestly the surgery didn't scare me one bit, it was the IV and the needles.  I freak out and become an anxious mess.   For some reason I fear the pain of needles much more than the pain of anything else.

 

Can anyone else relate?  Have you have problems trying to deal with lab techs or nurses who just don't get it?

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I really feel for you.  You are right, many people don't understand!!  I only get queasy and anxious when it is happening so it's not as severe as what you experience.  I make sure they will ask me to inhale and exhale while they do their work and I have to look away.  The inhale/exhale thing is helpful for me.  Do you already do that?

 

I hope someone will have some good suggestions for you.

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I can relate. In my case it's needles and injections and not blood/injury.

 

As a child I used to have strep throat all the time and our doctor would always prescribe penicillin injections. It traumatized me (I'll explain why bellow). As a teenager I would be petrified if I had to see a doctor for fear of getting injections. I still remember the smells and sounds of the room where a nurse administered injections. 

The last time I had to go though it, I was about 17 and I fainted in the street. My mom was with me and everybody panicked thinking I might be allergic.

The next time I fainted I was 27 and the nurse had to draw some blood (drawing blood was somewhat easier than injecting something) but she failed to tell me that she'll put a little tube in my vein to draw some blood later. When I felt and saw her doing that, I fell down on the hospital bed as a sack of potatoes.

 

However, something happened since that episode. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease and a couple of weeks later with yet another syndrome and they both require frequent blood test. So, for the last 10 years I've been practicing, despite myself, a certain tolerance to needles. At first it was difficult. Really. I felt so angry (read afraid) that I was sick and that I have to go through blood drawing so often. I couldn't go to the lab alone, I couldn't sleep the night before. In time, it got better.

 

I practiced positive thinking and did everything I could to relieve my stress. I don't know if it is recommendable or not but I used to play a role of a parent repeating to myself why it was good for me and offering some sort of an award afterwards.

Yesterday I was the one who actually asked for a blood test and went running to a lab. Just another chore I had to cross on my list. I didn't even think about it except as something good I was doing to myself.

 

I hope that you are blessed with good health and that you don't have to go through it often. It would be good to understand/find out if the fear comes from something else. In my case I made a connection with the feeling of helplessness. As a child they (nurses and doctors) had to hold me down and strip me to be able to inject penicillin into my gluteal muscle. I do not wish to compare this to the sufferings of abuse victims, but to me it did feel like violence. 

 

Just one more thing. I can't watch without discomfort somebody injecting something on TV or even worse, a big screen.

 

So, hang in there! Be kind to yourself and think positively! 

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I can relate. In my case it's needles and injections and not blood/injury.

 

As a child I used to have strep throat all the time and our doctor would always prescribe penicillin injections. It traumatized me (I'll explain why bellow). As a teenager I would be petrified if I had to see a doctor for fear of getting injections. I still remember the smells and sounds of the room where a nurse administered injections. 

The last time I had to go though it, I was about 17 and I fainted in the street. My mom was with me and everybody panicked thinking I might be allergic.

The next time I fainted I was 27 and the nurse had to draw some blood (drawing blood was somewhat easier than injecting something) but she failed to tell me that she'll put a little tube in my vein to draw some blood later. When I felt and saw her doing that, I fell down on the hospital bed as a sack of potatoes.

 

However, something happened since that episode. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease and a couple of weeks later with yet another syndrome and they both require frequent blood test. So, for the last 10 years I've been practicing, despite myself, a certain tolerance to needles. At first it was difficult. Really. I felt so angry (read afraid) that I was sick and that I have to go through blood drawing so often. I couldn't go to the lab alone, I couldn't sleep the night before. In time, it got better.

 

I practiced positive thinking and did everything I could to relieve my stress. I don't know if it is recommendable or not but I used to play a role of a parent repeating to myself why it was good for me and offering some sort of an award afterwards.

Yesterday I was the one who actually asked for a blood test and went running to a lab. Just another chore I had to cross on my list. I didn't even think about it except as something good I was doing to myself.

 

I hope that you are blessed with good health and that you don't have to go through it often. It would be good to understand/find out if the fear comes from something else. In my case I made a connection with the feeling of helplessness. As a child they (nurses and doctors) had to hold me down and strip me to be able to inject penicillin into my gluteal muscle. I do not wish to compare this to the sufferings of abuse victims, but to me it did feel like violence. 

 

Just one more thing. I can't watch without discomfort somebody injecting something on TV or even worse, a big screen.

 

So, hang in there! Be kind to yourself and think positively! 

It must suck to have a condition that regularly requires blood testing if you have this phobia of needles.  I'm in poor health, but at least there is nothing that I have that requires routine monitoring with needles, just occasional tests.  One of my biggest fears related to health is that I really don't want to develop Diabetes type II, ever.  Having to poke myself everyday would be a total nightmare with this anxiety disorder.  

 

Years of being on antipsychotics like Zyprexa and Seroquel as well as digestive problems that cause my blood sugar to be on a rollercoaster scare the crap of me, and I regularly fear ever getting Diabetes.  I don't feel like the doctors even care.  They don't monitor my blood sugar levels or anything related to insulin sensitivity whatsoever.  I feel like they don't care about prevention or any risk factors including a family history of diabetes, but would be more than willing to treat me once I got the disease.  Even typing the word blood, causing my BP to drop and me to feel dizzy.

Edited by NC86
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I faint when I see blood.  It's really hard for me to go to the dentist, the only surgery I've had was to get my wisdom teeth out.  My doc always wants to do a lot of blood tests every time I go.  This one nurse told me to look at the ceiling and wiggle my toes, that helps a lot, I do that everytime now.  

Yeah I always look away, never thought about wiggling my toes tho.   I start to feel dizzy or faint if I see blood in real life, or on TV.  But for some reason, blood on TV only bothers me if its on a reality show involving surgery, or injury with blood, but doesn't bother me if its on say a drama or action movie/TV show.  Needles bother me regardless if they are on a reality show or not or in real life.  

 

Whenever I get blood taken I have to lie down.  Lying down seems to prevent me from ever fainting, but I still experience a lot of anxiety.  As for Dentists, they used to use laughing gas but changed to using needles instead.  They failed to inform me of this change the last time I had dental surgery done, needless to say I was freaking out.

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