How to Relax While Getting a Shot
Let's face it: shots can be scary. Many people have a fear of needles or injections that is totally normal. However, it's important to recognize that shots only hurt for about three seconds, and then they're over. And for an important vaccine, those three seconds of pain are totally worth it - they could save you from a serious illness. Recognize that shots are important and you have to get them, so read on to learn how to relax while getting that shot.
Don't think about the shot.If you worry about it too much in the week or so before you get the shot, when it actually comes you'll be even more scared. In order to avoid this, try not to think about the shot in the time leading up to it. Distract yourself with friends, games, or even homework - do anything rather than think about the shot.
- If your parents made the doctor's appointment for you, ask them not to tell you about it - when the appointment is or whether you'll be getting a shot. This way, you won't be able to worry about it that far in advance.
Bring someone else for moral support. This can be a parent, sibling, other relative, or friend. Ask them to talk to you about other things and distract you throughout the appointment and especially just before the shot. Squeeze their hand if it helps you release your anxiety. Having someone you're close to will help you feel better and relax throughout the experience, but make sure to choose someone who will help you relax, rather than making fun of you or stressing you out.
Know that it won't hurt for long.There will be a sharp pain for less than three seconds, and then it will be over. It may be slightly sore for a few days, but it won't hurt much. Realize that it's only a small amount of pain for a huge benefit, so it will be worth it. Expect and accept a small amount of pain, and you will get through the shot much more easily.
Take deep breaths.Breathe in and out, focusing on drawing the air all the way into your body and then pushing it all the way out. Count your breaths if that helps you relax and focus on your breathing. This will help calm your body down so that you will feel less nervous and stressed.
Take precautionary measures if necessary.If you've fainted during or after shots before, or if you're worried about fainting, tell the doctor. They may have you lie down on the table or sit in a comfortable chair while they administer the shot, and they can keep an eye on you for a few minutes after the shot to make sure you're okay. Make sure they know that you're nervous so that they can help calm you down or take any necessary precautionary measures to keep you safe in any situation.
Don't look at the bag of needles. Before giving the shot, the doctor will clean the area where you're getting the shot with some alcohol. This is the scariest part because you know you're getting it soon. If you look at the bag of needles they will look super sharp and menacing, so turn your head away. Focus instead on your friend or family member that you brought with you, and talk to them to avoid looking at or thinking about the upcoming shot.
Relax your muscles and don't look.Look at your parent or friend, read a poster on the wall, or just look straight in front of you, but don't look at the needle and don't watch the doctor administer the shot if you're at all nervous about it. Clenching your muscles can make the shot hurt more and can cause a much stronger relief reaction just after the shot, so avoid this by making sure to relax your muscles.
Take care of yourself after the shot.Move your arm around throughout the day to keep it from being sore. Keep an eye on it the next couple of days to make sure everything is going as planned, and call your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
QuestionHow do I mentally prepare myself for an injection? How much does it hurt?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerThink of calming things like favorite foods or pets. A shot does hurt but only like a sharp pinch. It's all over pretty quickly.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I prevent pain when getting the shot?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry squeezing your toes. Don't squeeze your hands as it will make you tense. Also try pinching another area before or during the shot to add some kind of other pain for you to focus on.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do if I can't help getting worked up about a shot?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt's important to keep telling yourself that the pain is only going to last for a couple seconds. Take a deep breath and think about something else.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I stop from flinching when the needle goes in? Will flinching make it hurt more?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you flinch, the shot may scratch you and leave a mark. This will hurt more. Try to do something such as look at a book or some other focal point as the needle goes in.Thanks!
QuestionWhat is the best way to have less pain during a shot, and how can I relax before I get it?Lucas WeidnerCommunity AnswerThe best thing to do is look away and try not to tense your muscles. Try not to think about it too much before. Instead, read a book or watch a video on YouTube.Thanks!
QuestionWhat will happen if I flinch while getting a shot?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerAt worst, the person administering the shot will miss their target and you'll have to do it over.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do to distract myself from an injection?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can engage in conversation with someone, or you can look at a magazine while getting the shot. It will be over before you know it.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I relax when getting an injection in each arm at the same time?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTake a close friend or family member with you and ask them to talk you through it so you're distracted. Also, before the shot, try using a fidget spinner or a stress ball or something to ease your anxiety.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I get over my fear of needles?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can think happy thoughts and close your eyes. Try to distract yourself while getting a shot with something or someone else that you can focus on.Thanks!
QuestionI used to get blood work as a kid and I keep on thinking the shots will take as long as the blood work did. How do I get over this fear?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerShots are just a couple of seconds long, just keep reminding yourself that it will be over quickly.Thanks!
- Squeeze a stress ball or clench your fists really hard then let go. It relieves tension.
- Laugh or smile while getting the shot. It makes you happier and not as scared.
- Thank the person who gave you the shot.
- Wear loose clothes. If you're wearing super tight clothes, your body will tense up more. Relax!
- Close your eyes and count to ten, then it would be over! Also, if it hurts, pretend someone is there pinching you.
- If you have someone with you, hold on to them tight.
- Talk to the Nurse or doctor who's giving you the shot. It will be over before you know it!
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