Medically reviewed by Lindsay Slowiczek, Pharm.D. — created by Jacquelyn Cafasso — updated on January 10, 2019

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Insulin therapy plays a an important role in controlling your blood sugar and also can assist you avoid diabetes complications.

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You may need to take it a single kind of insulin or a combination of multiple species of insulin throughout the day. This counts on several way of living factors, her diet, and how well her blood street is controlled between meals.

Using insulin can be tricky sometimes. Below are some do’s and don’ts come pay fist to together you learn how to effectively manage your diabetes through insulin.


Try no to inject her insulin in the same precise place on your body every time. This is to prevent a condition called lipodystrophy. In lipodystrophy, the fat under the skin either breaks under or builds up and forms lumps or indentations that have the right to obstruct insulin absorption.

Instead, revolve injection sites. The finest places because that injecting insulin space your abdomen, former or next of thighs, top buttocks, and upper arms as result of their higher fat content. Each injection have to be at least two inches native the vault site. Try not come inject also close to her belly switch (at least two customs away) or into any kind of moles or scars.

For mealtime insulin, it’s finest to consistently use the same component of the body because that each meal. For example, you have the right to inject in your stomach prior to breakfast, your thigh before lunch, and your arm prior to dinner.


Do clean her skin prior to you inject

Clean your skin with cotton dipped in alcohol or one alcohol pad before you inject yourself. Wait 20 secs for the area to dry prior to you inject. This helps prevent infections.

You should also wash your hands extensively with soap and warm water before you handle any kind of needles.


Do inspect your blood street regularly and also write under each measurement

Your insulin treatment involves much much more than injecting insulin. You require to check your blood sugar level consistently using a blood glucose monitor. The continuous need come test your blood sugar have the right to feel prefer a burden, but it’s a an essential part of your diabetes care plan.

Blood sugar measurements can adjust depending on your tension level, how much practice you’re getting, illness, changes in her diet, and even hormonal alters during the month. Major changes might mean the you have actually to adjust your insulin dose.

Write under each measurement or record it in an app on her phone to present to your doctor. Her doctor needs this details to determine how much insulin is appropriate for you.


Do count her carbs before using mealtime insulin

The lot of mealtime insulin you must inject is based on the variety of servings of carbohydrate you plan on eating during a meal. End time, you’ll get much better at figuring out your carbohydrate intake. In the meantime, a dietitian can aid you come up v a meal plan that works for you.

There are also several smartphone applications and also internet-based calculators available to assist you number out your carbohydrate intake and also your corresponding insulin dosage.


Do know the indicators of hypoglycemia

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can happen when you take it the dorn insulin dose, nothing eat sufficient carbs best after taking your insulin, exercise much more than usual, or as soon as you’re stressed.

You have to take the time to learn the signs and also symptoms the hypoglycemia, including:

tirednessyawning being unable to speak or think clearlyloss the muscle coordinationsweatingpale skinseizuresloss the consciousness

You should additionally learn just how to manage hypoglycemia if it happens to you. Because that example, you deserve to eat or drink glucose tablets, juice, soda, or hard candies. You should additionally be extra cautious after vigorous exercise, as it can lower blood street for hours after the workout.


Do phone call friends and also family the you’re taking insulin

It’s a great idea to teach your friends, colleagues, and also family members around insulin and its potential next effects. If you do finish up acquisition too lot insulin and also having a hypoglycemic episode, they should know how to help.

If you become unconscious, a friend or family members member can provide you a shooting of glucagon. Speak to your doctor around keeping a supply of glucagon on hand and learning when and how to use it.


Don’t inject the insulin also deep

Insulin is an alleged to it is in injected right into the fat layer under the skin utilizing a short needle. This is referred to as a subcutaneous injection.

If friend inject the insulin as well deep and also it enters your muscle, her body may absorb it as well quickly. The insulin could not last really long and the injection might be really painful.


Don’t wait much more than 15 minutes to eat after acquisition a mealtime insulin

Rapid-acting (mealtime) insulins were designed to it is in taken right before you eat to assist you regulate your blood sugar an ext effectively.

As the name suggests, rapid-acting insulin start to work rapidly in the bloodstream. If friend wait too lengthy to eat, her blood sugar deserve to actually end up acquiring too low. This puts friend at risk for hypoglycemia.

If, for some reason, you can not eat a meal after you’ve currently taken her mealtime insulin, you need to carry approximately glucose tablets, juice, non-diet soda, raisins, or tough candies to prevent hypoglycemia.


Don’t panic if friend accidentally take the not correct dose

Calculating the appropriate dose the mealtime insulin deserve to be complex at first, specifically if you don’t understand how many carbohydrates you going come be eat at your following meal.

Try no to scare if you realize you took too lot or too little insulin.

If friend think did you do it taken too much insulin, eat part rapidly-absorbed carbs, choose juice or glucose tabs. Also, you might want to speak to your doctor.

If did you do it taken a lot much more than you require (like twin or triple the exactly dose), have a girlfriend or family member get you come a hospital. You might need come be it was observed for significant low blood sugar.

If you think did you do it taken too little insulin, or you fully forgot to take it it at all before your meal, measure your blood sugar. If the gets also high, you might need to take a short or rapid-acting (mealtime) insulin together a corrective measure up to lower your blood glucose levels. If you at every unsure about the dose, look for advice from your physician or diabetes treatment team.

If her glucose is still as well high even after a correction dose, offer it time. Injecting also soon deserve to lead to dangerously low glucose.

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When it comes time to take your next shot, you might be at a greater risk the hypoglycemia. You should monitor her blood glucose levels more than usual for the following 24 hours.


Don’t switch your insulin sheep or stop taking the without seeing your doctor first

Switching your insulin medicine or changing the sheep without questioning a doctor have the right to put you at danger for severe side effects and complications.

If friend have type 2 diabetes, you have to be seeing your medical professional or endocrinologist for a checkup roughly every 3 to 4 months. At your appointment, your doctor deserve to assess her individual insulin needs and also give you appropriate training on new doses or dosing methods.