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Nervous about needles?

Updated: October 13, 2021 / 10:23 AM

Needle Anxiety vs. Phobia
A guide for concerned youth/adults 12 years+ on where to get their COVID-19 vaccine (.pdf)


Some people are worried about getting needles generally. In fact, one in 10 people has a fear of needles.* This may make them nervous about getting the COVID-19 vaccine too.

The experience of getting a COVID-19 vaccine is the same as getting other vaccines. Here are some ways that can help make needles more comfortable, making you feel less stressed and more relaxed.

Getting the COVID-19 vaccine is an important way to keep you, your loved ones and community safe.

*NHS Foundation Trust: Overcoming your needle phobia (fear of needles)


8 tips for making vaccinations more comfortable

  1. Wear a short-sleeve shirt or top with sleeves that are easy to roll up
  2. Sit down in a comfortable position
  3. Ask questions so you know what will happen
  4. Relax your arm so that it is loose and jiggly like cooked spaghetti
  5. Take deep belly breaths to help you stay calm
  6. Listen to music that you find soothing
  7. Distract yourself so you are paying attention to something else or someone else
  8. Apply numbing creams or patches (topical anesthetics such as EMLA™, AMETOP™ and Maxilene™). These are available for purchase from pharmacies without a prescription. Apply to the area (top third of upper arm for people over 2 years) 60 minutes ahead of time.


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