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As COVID-19 vaccine efforts ramp up, advice on how to deal with a fear of needles

Click to play video: 'How to handle ‘needle phobia’ during COVID-19 vaccinations' How to handle ‘needle phobia’ during COVID-19 vaccinations
While the rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations are good news for most people, for some it's cause for anxiety and even all-out terror. Linda Aylesworth talked to the experts on dealing with the fear of needles – Mar 2, 2021

While COVID-19 vaccines come as a relief to many, for some it’s a source of anxiety.

Trypanophobia, a fear of needles, was classified as a disorder in 1994. For those who fear needles, vaccinations can be a frightening medical procedure.

Click to play video: 'Optimistic news from B.C. health officials as Phase 2 vaccine rollout plans announced' Optimistic news from B.C. health officials as Phase 2 vaccine rollout plans announced
Optimistic news from B.C. health officials as Phase 2 vaccine rollout plans announced – Mar 1, 2021

“It’s not logical so trying to work through it, whether it’s spiders or needles, through a logical thought process isn’t easy,” Manish Sadarangani, director at the Vaccine Evaluation Centre at the BC Children’s Hospital, said.

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“It takes time for these kids and sometimes adults to get through that.”

Read more: Vaccines are ‘one of the greatest tools we have.’ Here’s how they work

Sadarangani said it’s a problem that needs to be addressed as B.C. ramps up its COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

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“For some people…it may be enough to tip them over to make that decision, ‘Actually, I don’t want to get vaccinated,'” he said.
“So I think it’s really important that we do as much as we can to deal with this issue head-on and not to make it worse.”

Among Sadarangani’s recommendations for those with a needle phobia is that they should consider receiving their shot while lying down in case they pass out.

More advice on how to handle a fear of needles can be found at the Immunize BC website.

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