Tips for Insulin Injection
Insulin injection instructions might discourage most of you from taking care of diabetes by yourself.
Most of you probably have never injected themselves with insulin or anything else.
The thought of it is a bit odd, but once you've made it through your first shot, insulin injection will quickly become a regular part of your daily routine.
Injecting at the right depth is an important part of good injection technique.
Most doctors recommend that insulin be injected in the subcutaneous fat, which is the layer of fat just below the skin.
If you inject too deep, the insulin could go into muscle, where it's absorbed faster but might not last so long (and, it hurts more when you inject into muscle).
If the injection isn't deep enough, the insulin goes into the skin, which affects the insulin's onset and duration of action.
- Squeeze a couple of inches of skin between your thumb and two fingers, pulling the skin and fat away from the underlying muscle. (If you use a 5 millimeter mini-pen needle to inject, you don't have to pinch up the skin when injecting at a 90° angle; with this shorter needle, you don't have to worry about injecting into muscle.)
- Insert the needle.
- Hold the pinch so the needle doesn't go into the muscle.
- Push the plunger (or button if you're using a pen) to inject the insulin.
- Release the grip on the skin fold.
- Remove the needle from the skin.
The angle you should use to insert the syringe or pen needle into your body depends on your body type, the injection site, and the length of the needle that you use.
Your doctor can help you determine the right angle of injection for you.