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treeye treeye (New Member) New Member

afraid of being stuck by a needle

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I work as a nurse for almost three years and insert IVs all the time, but when it comes to myself being stuck for IV or blood draw, I'm a big baby. I got so nervous and sweaty, and sometimes I feel dizzy. So today I went in to have my blood tested and when I see a student trying to get my blood, I politely said" do you mind Kristen gets it for me?" (Kristen is a phlebotomist working there).

Now I feel bad that I refused to have blood drawn by the student. To be honest, I was a student at one time, if my patients refuse to let me practice on them, I will never become good at IVs.

What's your input on this? Are you afraid of being stuck like I do?

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I have a massive tattoo on my back and when I went to get a deep cleaning for my teeth, the needle injected into my gums nearly caused me to pass out -- I was so surprised at that!!! So, now I'm a little weird about being stuck. I am very convinced of the importance of giving blood and would really love to go sometime soon but now I'm worrying about my reaction to it. However, I'm still going to do it. I may pass out (my mom did the one and only time she did but not from needle fear) or be a little bit afraid but I feel this will be a good opportunity to get re-accustomed to something I used to be so brave about. For me, exposure is the best way to overcome something that I am nervous about.

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I used to be able to watch when I had to get blood drawn or an IV started on myself, but since I became a nurse I am the world's worst pt. I've run from my coworker every year when getting my flu shot (that I voluntarily agreed to get) and I'll ask what gauge needle they're planning on using for my IV. I told one home health nurse to drop the 20g and pick up that pretty little 24g if she was going to stick it in my hand. I also tell my nurses they get two tries at getting it then they're done. I tell my pts, as I'm getting ready to administer their 3 weekly shots, that it's better to give than to receive. Honestly, I think it's a control issue. I know how to give a shot and draw blood/start IVs, but if I'm not doing it to myself I know it's going to hurt.

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I used to be able to watch when I had to get blood drawn or an IV started on myself, but since I became a nurse I am the world's worst pt. I've run from my coworker every year when getting my flu shot (that I voluntarily agreed to get) and I'll ask what gauge needle they're planning on using for my IV. I told one home health nurse to drop the 20g and pick up that pretty little 24g if she was going to stick it in my hand. I also tell my nurses they get two tries at getting it then they're done. I tell my pts, as I'm getting ready to administer their 3 weekly shots, that it's better to give than to receive. Honestly, I think it's a control issue. I know how to give a shot and draw blood/start IVs, but if I'm not doing it to myself I know it's going to hurt.

While many pts share your sentiments, there are many times a tiny 24G needle won't cut it in an adult. If you need to infuse something quickly or are giving something like potassium that might burn, having a bigger IV is better. It doesn't necessarily need to be an 18G, but a 20 should be the goal in any adult pt

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Nobody likes to get stuck with a needle, you are smart enough to know when an unskilled person has that bevel coming at you.

You are no longer a nurse, when you are the patient.

Separate the two.

You were merely advocating for yourself in this situation.

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I had to get my immunizations and tigers a couple of weeks ago. There was a student in my doctors office. I let her do it because I will be the student soon. She did amazingly well. I will admit I was nervous. I am a veteran at IVs and and having my blood drawn. But I do request the smaller needles because my veins are so scarred and I am a hard stick. But I was surprised, she did better than many RNs.

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The last time I got my blood taken I fainted and peed my pants while I was passed out. Yes peed my pants. Using a needle or watching no big deal. But getting them my self is clearly an issue hahahaha!

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We do A LOT of vaccinating in our health department. I notice that adolescents are the WORST to vaccinate because they get so worked up from the moment they walk in the door. The thought inflicts fear. You need to find your way of coping at the time and learning to calm yourself down. Learn to breathe. Positive thoughts. Know that its just a needle stick and the thought of getting stuck is worse than the actual needle stick. Positive thought! Also make sure you drink water before blood draws and always eat something if its non-fasting lab. Pack a juice and drink it while you are getting your blood drawn if you can.

Dont' focus on the needle. I know that is hard but you have to distract yourself or learn to calm yourself at the time. Its WAY worse if you freak out and move when the needle is in you. Immunizations and blood draws can be very easy and practically painless if the patient is calm and the nurse is good at the skill (or if its a kid and the patient is distracted). I have a lot of patients say " I didn't even feel that" on both immunizations and blood draws and that's because I distract them so this is possible as nurse and patient! So for you as a patient remain calm and focus your thoughts on something else. Wriggling your toes is a good distraction technique. As a nurse, distract your patient for phlebotomy. For immunizations, distracting also and count to three for vaccines and give shot on 2. Hope this helps. :)

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I've never cared about getting my blood drawn or IV started and my last blood draw was by a student. P.S...she did great!! Since I am a nurse, I know it's just a matter of hand skill. If someone doesn't get my big veins the 1st try, not a big deal as I have many others to choose from. Everyone needs to learn and I have no problem allowing someone to learn from me.

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I'm a new grad nurse and a somewhat experienced paramedic. I've started quite a few IV lines over the years. I'm not all that sensitive about needles... or getting stuck. If there's a student around that needs an IV stick, I'm usually glad to be someone they learn from. I've even been known to reach over and help them start the line if they seem a little timid about it. If I'm their first stick, I try to put them at ease.

I'm not saying we should give up our own arms (or whatever) to a student, just that if you are, you may be in a position to help them become comfortable doing this stuff. If you're not comfortable with being stuck, that's perfectly OK. If you don't want me to do it, that's fine... I'll gladly arrange for someone else to do it, but it could take a while for someone else to get there.

Oh, and I have a personal stick limit too... I won't stick anyone more than 2 times unless it's absolutely time-critical and I can't wait for another person to come in to do their attempts too.

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I used to hate needles, and I still get a fair bit of anxiety from them, but getting my blood drawn for my first hospital job 3-4 years ago was not bad, and neither was last week's for my new job. They go in the AC. The worst part was once when they needed quite a few tubes, maybe three or four tubes, and I swear I felt like the vein was going dry on them, it was uncomfortable to say the least.

On the other hand, my new hospital has nurses do all lab draws, something I've never had to do before, and that makes me nervous! I don't know the first thing about phlebotomy. I suppose it's simply like starting an IV only with a needle and tubes instead of an IV catheter...

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Its much easier than starting an IV. It just takes some practice like everything else. You will do great! Just remember to be patient with yourself.

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