Newest Review: ... whereas I used to smoke at least 20 a day. This was a few years ago. Yes the session was expensive but I used to spent about £140 a month... more
Worked a treat for my needle phobia!
Member Name: Sarah_H
Date: 13/12/02, updated on 13/12/02 (2976 review reads)
Advantages: Quick, Excellent results, Confidence booster
Disadvantages: Can be expensive, but worth it
I have had a phobia about injections and blood tests for as long as I can remember. Actually that's a lie. I can remember being five years old and the doctor telling my mum I would need a blood test. I remember asking "what's a blood test?" (oh blissful ignornace!) So prior to this I did not have a phobia!
On the day of the blood test I do not remember being scared until the doctor rolled up my sleeve and told me to "keep very still as I'm going to insert a needle in your vein and if you move your arm the vein will split". Well, calmness turned into hysteria. The nurse tried to hold me down to no avail. The docotr finally gave up on the five year old girl, such was my hysteria, and I was referred to the hospital for the blood test.
I am now aged 25 and in 20 years I have been lucky enough to have only needed around 5 blood tests, but each one has been proceeded by hysteria, "special" hospital appointments and an increasing amount of embarrassment as I got older, but sadly no wiser...
At age 22 I decided to try and tackle my phobia. I hadn't had a blood test in years but was about to get married and thought I should conquer this once and for all.
I went to see a hypnotherapist who was a nice enough bloke but I only lasted one session before I gave up. There were many reasons for this? Each session cost £25 and he couldn?t give me any idea how many I?d need. 8 to 10 was a rough estimate. Also he had an annoyed habit of not being able to say th?s. Now this wouldn?t normally bother me too much but when you are in a trance and having to listen carefully to every word someone is saying, plus repeatedly on a tape after, a small annoyance can be magnified. So I gave up the hypnotherapy and literally a couple of days later I was rushed into casualty with a suspected stroke. It wasn?t, it was just a sever migraine, but I had to have a blood test immediately and then the hysteri
This was 3 years ago and I?ve never wanted or needed to tackle the phobia again. However a couple of weeks ago I found out there?s a genetic disorder in my family that we all had to be tested for. I felt so sorry for my mum as she said ?I?m afraid it means a blood test Sarah?, as again the hysteria and tears started. However as this was a blood test I could ?plan? for I decided to try and tackle it again.
I went to a local hypnotherapist who I had heard good things about. She told me I would only need 2 sessions with her. One as soon as possible and then one before the blood test. It was up to me how long I left in between ? I would know when the time was right. Before I had my first session I had a week of listening to her tape every day taking me into a trance. This was to get me used to her voice so treatment could start as soon as we first met up.
Well the tape was extremely powerful and led me through a deep relaxation that ended with her telling me to ?sleep deeply?. After a week of doing this I felt I had been able to achieve a deep trance.
At the first session she asked me a lot about my phobia and told me she was going to attach positive thoughts to the blood test experience. I laid down on a couch and she started by going through the relaxation as on the tape. Once I was in a trance she asked me to imagine walking to the doctors for the blood test, and then go through the whole experience. She constantly asked me how I was feeling and encouraged me to feel positive by imagining the proudest moment in my life. This was repeated several times and I answered her questions so she could gain a better understanding about why I have my phobia.
I remembered everything that was said during the session and afterwards we talked it through. My ?homework? was to repeat this trance and the visualisation twice a day until I was ready for the blood test.
I went away feeling very positive and
as if I could have had it done there and then! This was amazing as I hadn?t even been able to think about it before without bursting into tears!
The next couple of weeks were a bit of a rollercoaster. I had something stressful happen to me after a week which invaded all my thoughts, so every time I tried to do the trance I couldn?t concentrate properly. I had to stop and when I returned to her after 3 weeks I thought that the hypnosis hadn?t worked and I somehow had had a role in this. She reassured me that this was quite normal in this situation as stress will always find our weakest points. She assured me I could get back on track and I believed it.
After the second session I left feeling positive once more. This was on a Friday afternoon and I had my test booked for the Monday morning. I was determined to practice the visualisation every day.
On the Monday I didn?t feel happy about having the blood test, but I was able to keep a check on my emotions. I was able to go to work in the morning beforehand and it didn?t occupy my thoughts all the time. It would have done before and I would have been crying uncontrollably. I went to the surgery alone ( a huge achievement!) and kept calm while I waited. The nurse was running late and I was sitting there for 15 minutes, but still I was calm.
When I had the test I opted to lie down, as I had done my visualisations this way and I just looked away and thought positive thoughts. I wasn?t shaking or crying - amazing! It didn?t all go quite as planned as the nurse had to take a lot of blood for this type of test, and she couldn?t find a vein and had to swap arms. I shed one tear when this happened but re-composed myself before she took blood from the other arm.
When it was over the nurse, who knew I?d had hypnotherapy for the phobia, said I?d done well. Only then did I tell her that it was the first time that there hadn?t had to be another two nurses holding me down!
Then she said I?d done REALLY well!!
Thank you for letting me share this with you all. Writing it down has helped reinforce what an achievement conquering this phobia was. I would encourage anyone of you reading this who had any type of phobia to try hypnotherapy. If anyone lives in Hertfordshire my therapist?s name is Jessica Richards and you contact me directly if you want to know how to book with her.
Now I?m looking forward to booking my tetanus booster!