Instructions On Giving Insulin
A type 1 diabetic needs to administer regular amounts of insulin into his bloodstream in order to prevent his blood glucose from reaching too high a level. So, he must learn how to inject insulin at particular spots on his body. His diabetes educator or healthcare professional should be the one to teach him the technique. He has to be taught how to do it correctly. Knowing how to do insulin injections is sometimes also necessary for type 2 diabetics. So, let us go through the instructions below to refresh our memory on the technique.
Insulin Injection Technique:
- You need a syringe and, at least, a bottle of insulin. Two bottles of insulin are required if you need a mixture of two types of insulin. You need some alcohol wipes too. To safeguard your insulin, it ought to be kept in a refrigerator. For convenience, keep your syringes and alcohol wipe in a bag in a particular place.
- First, check to ensure you have been supplied with. Then, on its label, put the date the insulin is used for the first time. This is important as once a bottle of insulin is opened, its contents’ effectiveness is lost after 1 month and have to be discarded.
- Next, thoroughly wash your hands and dry them. Then, using both palms, carefully roll the insulin bottle to get the insulin into suspension again. Remember that insulin can be easily damaged by any shaking.
- Then, clean the insulin bottle top with a wipe to clean it. For a new bottle of insulin, the bottle cover has to be removed. With some pressure upwards, the cover will come off.
- Next, one of your hands takes a syringe while the other holds its needle cap. Take the cap off without it coming into contact with the needle.
- Remember the amount of insulin you need to inject. Draw into the syringe, air of the same amount by pulling out the syringe’s plunger. Then, push the needle through its rubber stopper. Send the air from the syringe to the insulin bottle to make it easier to draw out the insulin. This is so because the amount of insulin will be displaced by the air and the pressure inside the bottle is equalized.
- With the air injected into the insulin bottle, invert it. With the injection needle totally submerged in the insulin; draw out the insulin so that there is slightly more insulin in the syringe than that which is required by the dosage.
- Sometimes, air bubbles may be seen. When this happens, gently tap the syringe to release them. When the air bubbles escape to the surface of the insulin, inject the bubbles out of the syringe before refilling it with the required amount and pulling out the needle from the bottle.
- Next, choose the spot for the injection, using the diagram your doctor has given you for the purpose. Never use only one spot for the injection so as to prevent the skin there from becoming hard and rough. Use different spots and areas so that you only come back to a particular spot only after you have exhausted other spots and areas.
- After this, use an alcohol wipe to clean the injection spot, moving the wipe in a circle. Allow the skin to dry and try to have the muscles at the selected injection spot relaxed. With relaxed muscles, there will be less pain.
- Then, using the forefinger and the thumb, pinch the skin gently. After this, with the other hand, gently inject the insulin into the fat tissues just below the skin with the needle placed at an angle of 90 degrees to the injection spot. However, for someone thin or a child, an angle of 45 degrees will be much better.
- After this, the needle is drawn out with the angle similar to that of its entrance into the skin. Should the spot bleed, use the alcohol wipe to apply pressure on the spot to stop the bleeding quickly.
- Then, cap the needle carefully before disposing the syringe into a suitable container; the container can then be taken to one of many disposal points in your area. Some of the places for the disposal of your needles are hospitals, clinics and pharmacies.
- Finally, return the insulin to your fridge before placing all your diabetic paraphernalia back into the same place. Well, that is all you need to remember.
And all the paraphernalia you need are just a bottle or two of insulin, depending upon your needs; a syringe, at the most two alcohols wipes. Only about 15 minutes are needed each time you do your own injection.
Injecting Insulin -Video Guide
There are people who try to save on syringes by reusing them. However, you are not encouraged to do so because a syringe which has been used is no longer sterile and this can lead to skin infections. Using alcohol to sterilize a used needle is not advisable since the act removes the silicone layer coating the needle. With the silicone layer removed, irritation at the injected spot can result.
Beware of sharing syringes as diseases can spread when the virus in the blood of a diseased person on the needle of a syringe is transferred to the blood of the next person using the contaminated needle. One such dreaded disease is AIDS.
And if experience any signs or symptoms of low blood levels after an insulin injection, test your blood sugar immediately. Even if there are no signs of hypoglycemia, do the test about one hour after the insulin injection to monitor the effect of the insulin.