Trypanophobia is an extreme fear of medical procedures involving injections or hypodermic needles. Children are especially afraid of needles because they’re unused to the sensation of their skin being pricked by something sharp.


For more information about trypanophobia, check out the article in Healthline.

The fear of needles affects up to 25% of the population. About 30% of the US adult population hasn’t yet gotten their COVID 19 vaccine.  Hmmm….makes me wonder how big of a role ‘fear of needles’ is playing.  I would hazard a guess that a fairly high percentage of unvaccinated people might be more fearful of getting a shot than of getting COVID 19!

I experienced this fear of injections first hand when I worked as a nurse in an immunization clinic back in the 1980’s.  A number of shots were required for kids, particularly before they started elementary school.  By the same token, a number of parents were pretty apprehensive about having their children immunized.  These parents had never seen measles, whooping cough, diphtheria, etc. and their fear of the shot for their children outweighed their fear of a disease they had never encountered.  They definitely passed that fear onto their kids.  To say it wasn’t always easy to safely vaccinate a terrified five-year-old being held by an equally terrified parent is an understatement!

I would be curious to know how many of those same fearful parents and fearful kids haven’t been vaccinated against COVID 19 – 40 years later??  And they might not be owning up to their fear of getting a shot and are finding all sorts of other reasons to not get vaccinated. 

I am not a health educator, but I can pretty well guarantee that the news media coverage isn’t helping.  I don’t think people who are afraid of needles and injections are helped by seeing people JABBED multiple times every time they turn on the news!  If anything, it is probably making them even more afraid. 

I know there are better ways to address this fear.  The Healthline article has tips on how to do that effectively.  But I don’t think there are any quick fixes.  And with the COVID 19 vaccine, much of the damage may have already been done. ☹.

Fear not, get your shot

Abhijit Naskar

I wish it were that easy!



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