Tricks and Tips for Easier Insulin Administration
Those who happen to be an experienced insulin users, they probably learned a lot over the years.
For many who are diagnosed with type I or type II diabetes, dietary restrictions, insulin injecting and monitoring of blood sugar has become practically second nature.
Perhaps the time has come to reevaluate one’s condition care strategy by going through the following hacks.
The Proper Delivery
According to a study conducted by ADA (American Diabetes Association) if one follows certain rules while using pens, pumps, and syringes, then they are ensuring themselves an accurate and painless insulin dosing.
We are sure people will find the following tips helpful.
Watch out for air bubbles as they tend to decrease our insulin amount. Over the years, we may forget to check for air bubbles, but that is a mistake.
Being diligent when it comes to checking for bubbles in one’s syringe can reduce any risks of one’s blood sugar swinging too low or too high. And in the case that we use a pen, just make sure to avoid leaving the needle tip on between injections.
Pain During Injections
Should we notice any clear fluid or blood after we’ve administered the injection, we need to simply press on that area for about ten seconds. And be careful not to rub.
In case we fear we didn’t receive the proper dose of insulin, we must ensure to check our glucose levels in the following few hours.
If we constantly find the injections to be painful, maybe it’s time to talk with our diabetes educator or endocrinologist and discuss our injecting technique.
If people bruise more often than not after an injection, they can apply some ice on the area one minute before administering the injection. What this does is shrink one’s blood vessels. People might also want to change the angle at which they point the injection.
Bruising usually occurs when, instead of the subcutaneous fat, people unintentionally hit their muscle. If the bruising happens to occur on a more frequent basis, perhaps they should ask their endocrinologist to give them needles with a shorter length.
Furthermore, it is very important never to reuse needles, as this may lead to infection and increase one’s risk of injury. Reused needles may also cause more pain as they are dull.
Speaking of infections, if people happen to use a pump, they just need to be extra careful and check for infection at the injection site. In case they notice something, they must contact their doctor immediately.
Infections, other than the whole array of complications they can cause, can also increase the blood sugar levels. Also, take special care when it comes to hygiene and changing the infusion set.
Rotating Injection Areas
People need to mix things up when they choose which area they are going to inject the insulin. This goes particularly if they happen to favor the stomach. Constantly injecting in the same place can cause scarred tissue, which makes it harder for their body to absorb the administered insulin.
Also, while we’re on the subject of poor absorption, try and avoid any area two inches around the navel. Another important thing to consider is to specify the sites on the body for specific insulin injections. This is because most insulins don’t mix.
Prefill The Syringes
If people happen to administer an insulin injection to someone else (who is, say, impaired visually), then a wise notion would be to prefill their syringes.
Self-administration is advised as often as possible. That way, they can maintain their independence, and others still be making sure that the dose is accurate. Same goes for those who are in charge of caring for the individual with limited mathematic skills.
Tips for Insulin Pump Users
Since using an adhesive on the specific spot tends to make it stickier, it might be wiser to opt for solid or antiperspirant spray. Try and avoid deodorants, though, as the many chemicals they contain can easily irritate the skin.
The best way to do it is to clean the area with some alcohol and apply the spray, before waiting at least ten minutes to insert the infusion set.
Maintaining the Pump
If having difficulty with adhesiveness and yet don’t want to prep the area like the method mentioned above, opt for specific dressings and cover the adhesive pad.
Some good examples include Polyskin and Tegaderm. Make sure only the adhesive pad is covered.
The Pump and Sports
During any athletic activity, it’s best to wear spandex clothes. This is, of course, in order to keep the infusion set from pulling out or slipping. Another option is Velcro bands.
One should take their daily activities into consideration when attaching their infusion set. For instance, one should avoid the waistband area if they most often find themselves in a working space.
Also, it is crucial to secure one’s tubbing, so there are no hazards such as cabinets or doorknobs.
On the other hand, if people happen to like running on a regular basis, they will see that their hands are a better option for the infusion placement than their legs during any training periods or a race.
Keep in mind that no matter how long we’ve been administering insulin and consider ourselves a ‘pro’ in the field, there is always room for re-evaluation and learning some new trick to make it even easier for us.