Acute procedural anxiety includes an excess fear of surgical, dental or medical procedures which results in acute distress or issues with completing required procedures. Individuals might experience angst in anticipation of or during a procedure utilized for screening, diagnosis, and treatment. Avoidance of medical procedures because of acute procedural anxiety may possess negative health results. Interventions for 3 phobias of medical procedures are discussed here:


Blood-injection-injury phobia: It’s characterized by the phobia of receiving an injection, seeing blood, or of additional invasive clinical treatments. It’s suggested to apply tension, a mixture of exposure and muscle tensing therapy, as first-line treatment for such fear.

Applied tension: It’s utilized to counteract a vasovagal fainting response related to phobia of blood. Applied tension includes repeatedly tensing the body muscles to boost blood pressure and keep from fainting while in the presence of a phobic stimulus.

Within treatment using applied tension, an individual is directed to tense his or her muscles in his legs, torso, and arms then hold this tension until a hot feeling is experienced inside the head, usually ten to fifteen seconds. An individual then releases this tension and waits for twenty to thirty seconds for the body to go back to normal. An individual then practices the tension-release cycle over and over again until she or he becomes skilled within the method. As the method is mastered, an individual is directed to utilize the method in response to the early signals of a decline in blood pressure during exposure practice to phobic circumstances.

Additional interventions: As there’s a well-known fainting history and an individual hasn’t learned this applied tension method, an individual ought to lie down within the procedure, turn away from the site of drawn blood, and sit slowly just following sensations of fainting and dizziness resolving.

Cognitive restructuring: This includes the modification and identification of overly negative cognitions in regard to the feared stimulus.

Systematic desensitization: This includes imaginal exposure to the phobic stimulus paired with muscle relaxation in order to handle the anxiety.

Coping strategies: Strategies utilized in treating dental anxiety involve applied relaxation and relaxation. The more common type of relaxation method includes progressive muscle relaxation where individuals are directed to practice tensing (five seconds) and relaxing (ten seconds) various muscle groups beginning from the tip of the head downward to the toes. The exercise takes around fifteen minutes and is practiced two times per day for one to two weeks until proficient. Next, the tension portion will be eliminated and the release-only relaxation of various muscle groups will be practiced that takes five to seven minutes. It’s then followed up by conditioned relaxation where an individual learns to relax the entire body at one time on cue utilizing the self-instruction ‘relax,’ that further decreases relaxation to thirty seconds.

Hypnotherapy: Such therapy for dental anxiety involves these elements:

· Suggestions to an individual, as in a phase of hypnosis, that she or he will no longer be frightened of the imagined dental situation

· Directions to an individual to think about dental procedures and scenes within a successively more angst-provoking hierarchy

· Suggestions to a patient for deepening the hypnotic phase, comfort and relaxation