Afraid of injections

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This is going to sound stupid but I am a near 2 year old woman and I am terrified of injections or any types of needles . I recently got told by a family member that B12 vitamin deficiency , I freaked out, not only am I afraid I took a fit when I saw a nurse try to give me a needle , I went to therapy for it but I'm still terrified , need advice

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  • Posted

    It's difficult when you have a real phobia about something, but you do need to find away to overcome this. What happens if you need a blood test? My brother has a tendency to pass out, and now he tells them that, they let him lay down to have blood taken. 

    You say you've had therapy, what did they do? Hypnotherapy might be helpful? Learning to slow your breathing ( Yoga breathing techniques), can prevent the feeling of panic developing.

    I find just looking away, at something else while the injection is being done helps me.

    My phobia is the dentist, and it is very hard for me to work up the courage to go. I know that I don't go things will get very bad indeed. 

    I hope you will find a way to tackle this fear, was the nurse helpful when she saw how scared you were? Maybe just finding another nurse who will take things slowly might allow you to overcome your fear. Is it as a result of childhood injections? My dental phobia came from a bad experience as a child.

    Best wishes


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  • Posted

    Marion, is 100 % right to encourage you to have blood tests and the injections, because they are the gold standard treatment of B12 deficiency / P.A plus if in the future you need any other medical procedures you will cope better. But after a few months of therapy and coping strategies if it proves impossible to have any form of needle near you, you will have to discuss supplementing via lozenges or sprays with your doctor, but this is another whole different area of debate! Some people find it works for them others including doctors feel that supplements can not and do not work. And supplements can be rather expensive!

    Good luck!


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  • Posted

    I'm not sure if you are saying that you have been diagnosed with a Vitamin B12 Deficiency by a doctor and prescribed a course of injections of B12 for it or whether a "family member" told you that you have a B12 Deficiency.

    Have you - despite your fear of needles - had your blood tested for B12 and B9 (Folate) levels?

    If you do have a deficiency caused by a diet lacking in animal products such as red meats, fish, seafoods, eggs, poultry, dairy products etc then increasing your intake of these foods may restore your levels without the need of injections - as long as your level is not too low.

    However there are other causes such as gastric surgery (unlikely at your age) medications such as certain types of contraceptive, a history of eating disorders (anorexia or bulimia) a history of alcoholism (again unlikely), a family history of pernicious anaemia,.iron deficiency anaemia, sickle cell anaemia and thalassaemia). Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, gluten enteropathy (celiac disease), or any other disease that cause malabsorption of nutrients,

    autoimmune disorders (especially thyroid disorders such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and Grave’s disease) Type 1 diabetes, vitiligo, lupus, Addison’s disease, ulcerative colitis, infertility, acquired agammaglobulinemia, or a family history of these disorders.

    Hopefully none of the above will apply to you but I list them just in case.

    I have been having B12 injections every four weeks for the past 45 years so I guess I'm used to them by now after over 600 of them. I find it best to have them in the upper arm muscle and from slightly behind me. That way I don't have to look at what the nurse is doing, which means I am relaxed and not tensed up about it. Ther needles they use these days are so fine you can barely feel them - a vast improvement on the "re-usable" ones from all those years ago.If you are scheduled by your doctor to have the B12 injections ask that he/she monitors your Folate level as this is essential to process the B12.

    I wish you well Paula.

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  • Posted

    I am terrified of IM injections, My b12 level is 214, how can I check if my body is absorbing B12 or not?
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    • Posted

      Sadly the only way of checking serum B12 levels is by having blood taken, usually from an arm.

      Symptoms of B12 deficiency tend to develop slowly and may not be recognised immediately. As the condition worsens, common symptoms include:

      Weakness and fatigue

      Light-headedness and dizziness

      Palpitations and rapid heartbeat

      Shortness of breath

      A sore tongue that has a red, beefy appearance

      Nausea or poor appetite

      Weight loss


      Yellowish tinge to the skin and eyes

      If low levels of B12 remain for a long time, the condition also can lead to irreversible damage to nerve cells, which can cause the following symptoms:

      Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet

      Difficulty walking

      Muscle weakness


      Memory loss




      Are you "suffering" from any of the above? If not then it's unlikely you are B12 deficient so won't need testing - however if you do have some or all of the neurological symptoms then something will need to be done.

      We obtain Vitamin B12 by eating animal products - meat, fish, eggs, seafood, poultry and dairy produce. B12 is stored in the liver and holds several years worth but it does need to be topped up from our diet.  We also need Folate - leafy green vegetables, sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, spinach beans etc as this and B12 help your iron to make red blood cells.

      So as long as you don't have an absorption problem with your digestive system a good healthy normal diet of meat, potatoes, greens and gravy will see you alright.

      If you scroll up to my reply to Paula (immediately above your post) you will read some of the causes of malabsorption of nutrients.  Have a look through them and hopefully none will apply to you.

      I am not a medically trained person but I've had P.A. (a form of B12 deficiency) for more than 45 years.

      I wish you well 

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