February 13, 2017

Barriers to Insulin Therapy

The fear of needles or sharp objects is not that uncommon among people with diabetes. While I dislike needles, I do not have a fear, or technically – belonephobia.

Yet, I have met several people with type 2 diabetes that do have belonephobia. Two of these people need to start on insulin, but they are refusing and both are now on five different oral medications and their meter readings are still becoming higher. Both are considering insulin, but one of the two has COPD so the Afrezza is out. The other has finally accepted Afrezza.

I came across the following and found it interesting:
The Fear of Needles Has Many Names - But It Is Very Real
If you've ever tried to search for "needle phobia" or "fear of shots," you've probably come across some very odd and confusing terms. But this condition is very real, and a whopping 20 percent of people have a fear of needles. There are a lot of risks associated with the fear of needles. It can prevent people from going to the doctor, getting routine blood tests, or following prescribed treatments. Modern medicine is making increased use of blood tests and injectable medications, and forgoing medical treatment because of a fear of needles puts people at a greater risk for illness and even death. For example, diabetics who skip glucose monitoring and insulin injections can put themselves in serious danger of complications.

Here are the six medical terms that are related to fearing needles:
  • 1. Aichmophobia: an intense or morbid fear of sharp or pointed objects
  • 2. Algophobia: an intense or morbid fear of pain
  • 3. Belonephobia: an abnormal fear of sharp pointed objects, especially needles
  • 4. Enetophobia: a fear of pins
  • 5. Trypanophobia: a fear of injections
  • 6. Vaccinophobia: a fear of vaccines and vaccinations

Back to my thoughts -
For many people with type 2 diabetes, doctors will not prescribe insulin and will use the threat of insulin as a way to get patients to follow orders. Then when they need insulin the patient blames him/her self and feels that he/she is a failure.

I have personally seen examples of people who fear needles while in the military, out of a group of over 100 men; six went down, succumbing to trypanophobia. The way medical professional should handle type 2 patients is presented here. This article also covers other fears about insulin that many people with type 2 diabetes have and explains these.

For those people that need some encouragement about using syringes, view the following video from BD on using insulin syringes.

Insulin is necessary for many people with type 2 diabetes when their pancreas can no longer produce sufficient insulin.

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