Blood Phobia (hemophobia) And Fear of Needles (trypanophobia)

By: Suzanne Feinstein, PhD

Blood-injection-injury phobia is a common condition amongst children and adults. If you struggle with blood and needle phobia, you may have what is known as a dysregulated autonomic nervous system. The vagus nerve, which is responsible for keeping your body’s blood pressure and heart rate at homeostasis, acts out of sync when the body encounters certain triggers. Pain, needles, blood and anything associated with medical procedures can cause a spike in anxiety, heart rate and blood pressure and a subsequent sudden drop in blood pressure. This leads to a sensation of vertigo and possibly fainting. This condition, known as vasovagal syncope, can cause extreme discomfort and can lead to full-blown panic in the face of anything that threatens to activate these bodily sensations.

The anticipatory anxiety may cause you to avoid necessary medical procedures, dental work, and vaccinations. This, in turn, can increase health risks, interfere with securing jobs that mandate physicals and vaccines, and can create immense shame.

In order for you to combat this phobia, we use a combination of exposure therapy, breathing exercises,

and applied tension (AT) techniques to help you manage the syncope and anxiety in tandem. You will learn how to regulate your nervous system and systematically desensitize to your triggers. Since the top priority of this CBT treatment is to prevent fainting, it is different than treatment for other specific phobias. Instead of using relaxation techniques which reduces blood pressure, the combination of techniques allows you to stop the panic reaction while increasing blood pressure in order to prevent a vasovagal syncope.

If you have a blood-injection-injury phobia, it is important to pursue this front-line treatment. Ultimately, the goal is to reduce your intense emotional and physical reactions to medically-related procedures.

There is no more need to avoid doctor visits, vaccines or injections. Call 645-345-3010 or email drfeinstein@behaviortherapynyc.com to finally approach this sensitive problem and seek out the care you need.

Recent Posts

The Struggles of Self-Care in Mental Health

Self-care – a term that has become both a buzzword and a lifeline. In our fast-paced lives, we often find ourselves juggling responsibilities, deadlines, and the needs of others. Amidst this chaos, we inadvertently push our own well-being to the back burner. But what...

Public Speaking Phobia: Who It Affects and How to Beat It

If you have a fear of public speaking, you aren't alone. According to a 2024 Gitnux Market Data Report, 77% of people deal with this common fear called Glossophobia. People with this type of phobia may avoid speaking in public situations altogether or suffer through...

Break the Cycle: What Is Stress Boredom and How to Overcome It?

According to the American Psychological Association, almost 30% of Americans say they often feel so stressed that they can't function. This kind of intense stress can worsen into a cycle of stress boredom. Stress boredom, also known as chronic boredom, is...

Breaking Down Perfectionism: Understanding its Defense in BFRBs

A high sense of perfectionism can ruin work or academic performance. Perfectionism can also negatively affect many other aspects of our lives, including one's health. Perfectionism is often revered as a virtuous trait, but it can unravel into destruction when...

Breaking the Silence: How Common is Impostor Syndrome?

Do you ever feel like you aren't good enough for your job? Do you tend to doubt your accomplishments, despite how hard you've worked to get where you are? Most people feel this way at one time or another. Many of us believe we aren't as smart or as capable as others...

Exploring the Intricate Connection Between Fear, Shame and Guilt

Fear, shame and guilt are intricate emotions that often intersect, creating a complex web of responses and cognitive distortions. Let’s delve into each of these emotions. Fear is an instinctual response to perceived threats. It can manifest in response to external...

Are You Ready To Transform Your Life?

Schedule a free 15-minute consultation