1. Health
Send to a Friend via Email

Injecting Multiple Sclerosis Medications

It will never be fun to self-inject MS meds, but it can be less stressful.

By

Updated February 28, 2013

If you are on one of the older treatments for multiple sclerosis (MS), namely, Copaxone, Betaseron, Rebif or Avonex, you are one of the lucky people who gets to inject yourself on a regular basis. Avonex is the only one of these medications that is given by intramuscular injection, while the rest require a subcutaneous injection. Regardless of the type of injection, the tips I can offer you are the same. I'll tell you that not all of these tricks and techniques work for everyone. We all have to experiment and find our way when it comes to injecting ourselves. However, I will tell you that I was a needlephobe before I was diagnosed with MS, to the point of hyperventilating when I had to give blood and feeling faint even with confronted with the flu shot. It was only when I had no choice that I learned how to inject myself. I did it the hard way, with no prep or stress-easing rituals, hitting nerves and muscles and causing myself unnecessary trauma, both physically and psychologically. Give some of these techniques a try. Even if you are skeptical or are a 10-year veteran of self-injecting, you may find that one of these ideas takes a little bit of the pain and aggravation out of self-injecting.

Tips on Self-Injecting MS Medications for Needle Phobes

This is an overview of some techniques based on cognitive behavioral therapy that you may want to try. My favorite tip in here is to "succeed a couple of times." Really, once you do it and realize that you are still in one piece, it makes the whole process a little more tolerable.

Read the full article: Tips on Self-Injecting MS Medications for Needle Phobes

When to Massage Injection Sites for People with MS

The timing of massaging your injection sites varies according to which medication you are on, which came as a surprise to me.

Read the full article: When to Massage Injection Sites for People with MS

Ease the Pain of Injections by Finding a Helper

As mentioned in this article, my husband was a lifesaver when it came to my injections until he started buzzing like a bee while holding the syringe. I guess he figured that I was fully capable of injecting myself (he was right).

Read the full article: Ease the Pain of Injections by Finding a Helper

Make Injections Easier by Breathing

Whether you use this technique for easing injecting anxiety or not, I suggest you take a look at it. This is great for people (like me) who have not yet gotten the hang of meditation and just need a "quick fix." I use this all the time when something is worrying me and I can't go to sleep or when I need to really focus. Set aside your skepticism and try it for yourself – you'll be glad you did.

Read the full article: Make Injections Easier by Breathing

Make Injections More Pleasant with a Ritual

Use this suggestion as an excuse to do something that you really, really want to do before or after an injection. Pamper yourself. It eases the pain.

Read the full article: Make Injections More Pleasant with a Ritual

Readers Respond: What do you do to make injecting your MS drugs easier?

I have just given you a couple of ideas of things that work for me. Take a look at some of the things that other people do to make injecting a little better. If you have a tip of your own, by all means, share it with us. You may really be helping someone.

Read the full article: Readers Respond: What do you do to make injecting your MS drugs easier?

Using Visualization To Reduce Stress When Injecting

I really like this. Sometimes I picture myself somewhere fabulous, like at a sidewalk café in Paris. Other times, I just imagine the glass of wine that I am going to pour for myself 30 seconds after the injection is complete.

Read the full article: Using Visualization To Reduce Stress When Injecting

  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Multiple Sclerosis
  4. Living Well with MS
  5. Injecting Multiple Sclerosis Medications 101

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.