Posted by: Sox | 2006/11/09

Fear of needles(any Sharp objects)

Hi, My son is 4 years old and recently visited the dentist who then decided to extract one of his teeth there and then. Although he had extractions done before, -under conscious sedation this time it was done with him fully aware. It was a very traumatic experience and since then he becomes very panicky when we need to do anything to him that requires needles or scissors (e.g. I wanted to remove a splinter from his foot and he went into such a state that took it took me a couiple of minutes to calm him and then I could still not remove the splinter because he refused to let me touch his foot). He also becomes very nervous when any of us has to visit any doctor or dentist,he always asks whether the doctor will be using an injection or cutting us.
Should I seek professional help or will this fear fade away.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Sounds like the dentist really didin't handle this at all well ( and isn't there stuff like EMLA cream they can use to numb the mouth before giving an injection --- and couldn't he have aranged for sedation of the sort that had worked well before ? ). Such reactions may fade on their own, but if its been this strong for more than a couple of weeks, it'd be better to see a good shrink ( a psychologist, as meds are not needed ) for assessment and CBT type treatment, to help him unlearn this learned fear. It can usually be cleared up surprisingly soon

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Our users say:
Posted by: mary2 | 2006/11/10

My daughter too had a bad experience with a tooth extraction and was left with half a tooth in and the broken bit out and anaesthetic didn't work well. Her fear at 4years old was untold (she blamed me for putting her in this situation). We left it for a few months and didn't rise or respond to any of her fears and we arranged for her best friend and mother to accompanied her the first time to a different dentist who knocked her out. I was in the next room and there when she awoke. She was treated this way for the next 2 years and has no recollection of her fearful experience. I would say don't draw any attention to moments of fear and distraction works well

Reply to mary2
Posted by: Sox | 2006/11/10

Thank you all for your responses and willingness to help.
For those who has left contact details I really appreciate it and will be in contact.

Reply to Sox
Posted by: QP | 2006/11/10

This is called a needle phobia. My son suffered from it. I took him to a very good dentist in Claremont in Cape Town, who referred me to a clinical psychologist who works with teenagers: Henk Eichorn. His number I think is 073 440 0994. He worked with my son over about three appointments, and at the end of that my son had his dental work done, injections and all! Really very successful.

I believe needle phobia can become life-threatening - not to worry you unduly though - because later in life they can refuse life-saving treatment because of their fear.

Reply to QP
Posted by: Momof3 | 2006/11/10

Hi sox sorry to hear of your sons bad experience.
I am in Cape Town too. My son went to a dr winkel here in Bellville.Very good dentist and he knows how to handle kids.If you tell him before hand that your son it very scared of needles, of course without him hearing you.(say in Afrikaans.) the durbanville family clinic has an educational pycologist that might know of one who deals with sharp things as Sc said.
I you want more info contact me on carol underscore mavis at hotmail dot com.

Reply to Momof3
Posted by: Sox | 2006/11/09

Thanks for your response. You are correct that the dentist did not handle this very well. I made his assistant aware of this and she agreed but her excuse was that he does not have any kids of his own, therefore he does not know how to handle them. I have changed dentist in the mean time.
Can you recommend any psychologist in the Western Cape (Cape Town)

Reply to Sox
Posted by: Gurl | 2006/11/09

I also have a phobia for needles, I'm 25 and it all started when I was about 7 and had to go to hospital for pnemonia... I go into a cold sweat and literally pass out if I see a needle. Even though I know that it's not that sore I can't handle it. It hasn't faded at all for me and i'm just as scared as I've always been. If you tell the doctors or dentists that your son is scared of needles most of them are quite good and try not to let you see it...

Reply to Gurl
Posted by: Colin | 2006/11/09

I cant look at sharp objects pointed at me.
Meaning I can eat with a knife but if I turn the point directly to my face I struggle to look at it.

Every one has their own little kinls and bumps :-)

Reply to Colin

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