Tips for Handling Insulin

Here are some useful tips for handling insulin.
Take good care of this important medication and eventually it will take good care of you.

Type
Before using your medication, read the label first, and if you are still not sure this is the right type of medication then don't hesitate.
Call your doctor or your pharmacy to make sure you have the right type in your hands.

Handling Insulin



Storage
Do not expose your diabetes medication to heat, extreme cold or direct sunlight.
The quantity for the next 2-3 days can be kept in room temperature or approximately 25°c (furthermore, it can be kept up to 28 days). Keeping this medication at room temperature is important for two reasons.
The first is that cold diabetes drug straight from the fridge might hurt while the same drug at room temperature might not.
Tip: Avoid yourself from unnecessary pain! Don't inject yourself cold insulin!
The second reason is that cold medication may be absorbed more slowly than same drug which was kept in room temperature and the impact on your blood glucose level will be the same.
The extra amount should be stored in the refrigerator cooled but not in freezer.
Always keep in your house extra diabetes medication from another batch or from another manufacturing date.
If, for any reason, your current medication was spoiled, then you can switch to the other medication.
Remember! If you experience sudden high blood sugar levels with no reason (and you have no fever or any activity changes) it could be spoiled medication.
You should try immediately your other diabetes medication and check your blood sugar levels frequently in that day.

Mixing types
Mixing different types of insulin is popular in order to provide best blood sugar level control.
The idea is to let the fast types (Regular or Humalog) act in time of meals, and let the long-acting types (NPH, Lente, Ultralente) to act in the time between meals.
But NEVER, never mix the long-acting types available, such as glargine and detemir with any other types.
Tip:if you still want to use the long-acting types available, such as glargine and detemir along with the rapid-acting types but without the fear of mixing them, consider the possibility of using an insulin pen only for the rapid-acting doses. (For more details…)

Disposal



Replacing
Diabetes medication which was kept in room temperature remains stable up to one month.
After one month you have to replace it.
Diabetes medication which was kept in the refrigerator and was opened is good for use for the next 28 days whether it remains in the refrigerator or not.
After 28 days you have to replace it.

Disposal
Throw away needles in a hard container that can be closed.
Laundry detergent or dishwasher detergent bottle will do just fine.
Just remember to close the bottle after throwing the needles in it and to keep it far away from the dishwasher or the washing machine (and the kids of course).







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