Hosted by Long and Short Reviews.
Click here to read everyone else’s replies to this week’s question and here to see the full list of topics for the year.
Last year I learned some new tricks that helped me avoid fainting after receiving vaccinations. My body has never liked needles, so I have a long history of swooning like an nineteenth-century heiress whenever I need a blood test or an injection.
Honestly, swooning is only amusing in historical romance novels. In real life, it’s a little frightening and embarrassing, especially when you feel like it’s out of your control.
Here are the steps I took to avoid that fate this time around.
I can’t guarantee they will work for you or that they will work every time, but they’re certainly worth a shot (so to speak) if you’re also a fainter:
- Have a snack and something to drink beforehand. If caffeine is something you imbibe, this will work even better. If you can’t or don’t drink caffeinated beverages, consider picking something a little sugary or salty if you can eat those things.
- Ignore any embarrassment you might feel and talk openly about your history of fainting with the medical professional. They might have additional suggestions!
- Lie down if at all possible. If you must sit, try to have a kind friend or relative standing nearby to catch you.
- Relax all of the muscles in your arm (or whenever you’re about to feel the poke) to help reduce the pain.
- Breathe slowly and deeply.
- Focus your gaze on something in the opposite direction of the needle.
- Clench your stomach muscles as the needle enters your arm.
- Have another snack or drink as soon as you can after the procedure.
Basically, you want to be well-hydrated, relaxed, and distracted. The snack can help keep your blood sugar and blood pressure at steady, acceptable levels. I suspect the stomach clenching idea works because it provides yet another distraction.
There’s something about the combination of all of these things that makes it easier to avoid passing out.