Practical Tips For Those Suffering From Hospital Anxiety


Are you looking to get away from it all? Do you want room service on call? Want a place to put your feet up for a while? Interested? Of course, you are, and you can get them all at your local hospital? Still interested? Hmm…

Despite the ‘benefits’ of a stay in a hospital, many of us would sooner run a mile than book a stay at our local medical facility. Why? There is a lack of control, for starters. Placing our lives in somebody else’s care for a while isn’t particularly appealing. Then there are all those ‘sick’ people to contend with, moaning and groaning with their particular ailments. You might not fancy the idea of hospital food, either! And what if you catch a bug? What about surgery? If you weren’t anxious about a stay in hospital before, you might now well be! Sorry if we are to blame.

If the thought of a stay in a hospital sounds less like a dream hotel and more like a nightmare to you, here are some tips to help you.

  1. Acknowledge your fears. For starters, if you are genuinely afraid of going into hospital, know that there is an actual term for the problem. It’s called Nosocomephobia, and you can see the symptoms of this here. If this is you, know that you aren’t alone. Then consider why you are afraid. Write down each fear and try to look at it logically. Are your fears valid or are your fears illogical? Understanding your fears is the first step to overcoming them.

  1. Speak to your doctor. With your fears written down, take them to somebody who may be able to put your mind at rest. Your doctor is the obvious choice, but if you need to go for surgery, you might also be able to book a meeting with the surgeon. Explain your fears, even if they seem silly. You see, if they are causing you fear and panic attacks, they should still be explained, even if it makes you feel a little embarrassed. The doctor and/or surgeon will be familiar with what you have to say, and should in most cases put your mind at ease.

  1. Visit your local hospital. If the thought of being a patient in hospital scares you, take a brave step into the hospital nearest to you, so you have some idea of what to expect. Adjust yourself by being in the building, perhaps by having a cup of tea in the cafeteria while watching the people around you. Whether alone or with a friend, this is a good start to overcoming the phobia. At this point, you are in control. You don’t have to stay, and you can leave if you start to feel jittery. But by being present in a hospital environment, you may be able to acclimatise yourself to what it is like, and chances are, you may discover it’s not that bad, after all!

  1. Treat your anxiety. This is about finding ways to calm your nerves, so while a stay in a hospital may be inevitable, you might still be able to find a strategy to help you cope. Consider CBT counselling to help you take actionable steps, as well as breathing exercises and meditation to help you gain control over your nerves.

  1. Remember the positives. No, we aren’t talking about the room service or the opportunity to get some rest. Attractive as they may be, there is also the eventual outcome of the stay to consider. Taking these post-surgery results from Timothy Steel as an incentive, remember that a stay in hospital and surgery are both conducive to you being well. Your health will improve, and you may be able to do things that you have thus far struggled with. After all, doctors and surgeons are there to help you, and not make your life a misery.
*This is a collaborative post.

Were our tips helpful? Do you have any other useful advice for our readers? Let us know, and share your wisdom with us.

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