Fear of Injections

Hi, before now I never knew that I was scared of needles because they were always done for me and I would not have to expect when it would happen. Now that it is me injecting myself, I can’t do it which is really bad because then I try every day and fail and my BG is irregular again. I don’t have any family that can help me with injections. Are there any pointers for how to force myself to take these injections?

Maybe a nurse can help you as you start doing this on your own: not doing it for you but guiding you.
That said, do you know just what it is you’re afraid of? Is it pain; that you’ll give the wrong dose; that you might bleed a little?
Some fears are as true in real life as you imagine them to be, but others turn out not to be a bad as we imagined once we face them. Case in point - almost exactly a year ago (12/20/21) I had my wisdom teeth removed - I had put it off for a few years but finally one of them broke and there was no way around it. I was full of anxiety during the the weeks leading up to the visit, and I was surprised to find the anesthesia I requested was in fact “twilight sleep” and I would be conscious but very relaxed. As I said, I fretted over it and finally the day came, they took me back, gave me the meds and I let them do their thing. To my great surprise it wasn’t bad at all - I felt a little tugging now and in but that was it. During the procedure and afterwards I kept thinking it wasn’t so bad, and my imagination had been my worst enemy!
All of that is to say, once you do it - and do it over and over - hopefully you will become more relaxed, your fear will be come manageable and hopefully you will conquer it. There are also relaxation exercises or practices you could learn that might help.

1 Like

Hellow! @BobBelcher i know how it feels when we think of injections,and that we will always inject for the rest of our life, once i was diagnosed i was at home with the parents who don’t even know that i have to inject everyday to stay alive i was scared of needles but i had no option because no one has idea on what is diabetes i used to inject in the bedroom where no body can see me i was selected to join the college but i wasn’t readyto disclose that am diabetic to anyone i used to inject in the bathroom with the time i didn’t even realize that needles hurts cause i had to make it really quick :joy: and finally i graduated my college without anyone knowing that am diabetic! So i will advice you to train your mindset first, remove the thoughts of fear! And just do it​:muscle:

1 Like

Yes, thats the thing. I know it won’t be painful and I typically don’t even care about pain. I don’t know where this random inability to make my hand put a needle in my body came from but the whole process feels wrong. Kind of like im stabbing myself. I did it over and over for two weeks and then suddenly i grew this fear of doing it and can’t get my hand to move.

Maybe I will rush it and that will help because I end up with the needle hovering over my body for 25 mins not moving LOL

1 Like

It might hurt less if you go fast. If it helps any the needles used now are very fine gauge - much skinnier than the ones some of us grew up with. If you’re scared of pain you could try numbing the site with ice. There are some products I think you can get over the counter that do the same thing - ask your pharmacist.

It also depends on if you are drawing your insulin from a vial or using an insulin pen. If you are drawing your insulin from a vial, dosage can let you use shorter needles. I personally have found that the type of syringe I use currently is a 1cc with a 30G x 5/16 inch long needle instead of the normal 3/4 inch long needle and seems easier to deal with. The name brand of the syringes are Droplet and come in 1cc and 1/2cc dosages along with having half unit hash marks for pinpointing dosages. There are also lidocaine alcohol preps that can take the sting out of injections, however they are difficult to find nowadays. I hope this info helps b/c it’s important as you know not to skip dosages. Keep fighting the fight, you’ve got this.

Can totally relate - I remember the first day I was alone and had to give myself my first injection - I was absolutely petrified. What really helped was the advice from the diabetes nurse who told me practice injecting multiple times into an orange - I literally held the orange over my stomach where I would have injected and practiced injecting water into the orange - until the movement was in my muscle memory : ) and then when I finally did it in my abdomen (fatty part!) it was easier than I thought.

For insulin syringes with vials, I now use the ReliOn 31 gauge, 6mm (15/64") length needle with 3/10 ML syringe - the needle is much shorter and less daunting.

But even better - to agree with other posters above - using an insulin pen is wayyy easier, especially using the new Novofine Plus 32GX4mm (1/6") pen needles - I love those short stubby little pen needles the best I can barely feel it.

Good luck - it gets easier! : ) take care and happy holidays

Hi! I’m glad to hear that other people also struggle with this! I’ve held my insulin pen in the same spot for 10 minutes without moving a muscle. For me it’s like a mental block where I just can’t seem to move my hands to inject- its super frustrating because I know it’s not all that bad but I can’t seem to get my body to cooperate. I’m not afraid of needles, pain, blood, or anything like that. My shots/insulin pump site insertions don’t usually hurt. For me the struggle is just actually poking myself.

Some things I’ve tried to get around that mental block:

  1. Set a timer and see how quickly you can do it before the time runs out. Each time you inject see if you can do it faster than the time before.
  2. Involve some sort of incentive or put some pressure on yourself. I’m on a pump now but when I was on insulin pens I used to inject in the car a lot when we were on road-trips to go see our grandparents. Oftentimes we would stop at a drive through to get a snack/meal. I had to be fast enough to inject when we were stopped at the window to order or at a red light. I couldn’t eat whatever I had gotten until I gave myself a shot so it was pretty motivating to do it quickly while the food was still warm/before the ice cream melted! Applicable for tv commercials, microwaveable meals, however long it takes your pet to eat meal, etc.
  3. Don’t overthink it- better yet, don’t think at all. Just do it. (Easier said than done!)
  4. Turning on some music or something to relax/distract you from overthinking. If it’s music, try injecting before the chorus starts or before the song finishes.

One thing I’ve noticed is that for me it tends to come in phases- for a week or two (or five) it will be really difficult to inject, then it will be super easy for a while. Hopefully this helps at least a little and I’d be happy to hear any other tips!

Hello. Years ago I also got stuck giving injections. I had been doing it, but just started pausing. I also didn’t even notice any pain doing it. I have changed my mindset and just did it. I could do it slow, I could do it fast. Fast is my normal. I now use a pump and don’t have to worry about it, much. But, my pump has died a couple of times on vacation and I’ve survived for several days on injections every 4 hours. I agree with Ibrah, it is all in your mind, and you need to change that. Good luck!!

1 Like

Thank you so much, you perfectly understood what I was trying to say. I have been turning on music and dancing before to distract me from overthinking and it has been working perfectly!