March 19, 2019 How to inject insulin a step-by-step guide
[00:00:03] Steps of insulin injection. Check your insulin. The first step is to look at the expiry date to make sure it's not expired. Next because there are different types of insulin you'll need to know if yours is clear or cloudy. Although they look different, one is no better than the other. If your insulin is supposed to be clear, make sure it's clear. If it's supposed to be cloudy, make sure it's cloudy. Check with someone on your diabetes team if you're not sure what yours is supposed to look like. If you are like Paul and have two types of insulin, make sure you have the right pen for your injection. Now that you know your insulin is in good shape, you're ready to load it.
[00:00:54] Load your insulin cartridge. Reusable pens only. This step is only for people using a reusable pen. If you're using a pre-filled insulin pen you can skip ahead to Step Three: mixing the insulin. So you have your insulin cartridge and your empty reusable insulin pen. First remove the pen cap. This is the cartridge holder. Twist apart the holder from the pen body. Put the cartridge into the cartridge holder and attach it to the pen body. Now that you have loaded your reusable pen it is basically the same as a pre-filled pen. Onto the next step.
[00:01:50] Mix your insulin. Cloudy insulin only. This step is only needed if you have cloudy insulin. If your insulin is clear you can skip to Step Four: attaching the pen needle. Don't ever shake the insulin. To mix the insulin just roll it between your hands horizontally 10 times and then gently tip it like this 10 times to make sure that it's milky white. Ok onto the next step.
[00:02:20] Attach the pen needle. First you will remove the seal from the needle. Then line up the needle with the pen. Keeping a needle straight screw the needle onto the pen like this and remove both the outer and inner cap. Keep the outer cap for later when you remove the needle. Once your needle tip is on, your pen is almost ready.
[00:02:49] Prime your pen. Priming the pen just means getting rid of the air in the needle and making sure that the pen is working. To do this, first you will dial 2 units. Now hold up the pen. And press the injection button all the way in. Look for a few drops of insulin, if you don't see any drops, repeat the above steps until you do. Once you do your pen is primed.
[00:03:20] Set your dose. The dial lets you choose the amount of insulin that you need to inject. Just turn the dial to the right number. Remember that it shows just the even numbers. Odd numbers are marked as a line. If you're not sure what your number should be, talk to a member of your diabetes team about how much you should be taking.
[00:03:45] Determine your injection site. There are a few options for where to inject. It could be your belly but not your belly button, the outside of your legs, the back of your arms and the top of your butt. See what works best for you. You will probably find that it's hard to inject yourself properly in hard to reach spots like your arms or bum. It's not a good idea to use the same spot over and over again because you might get lumps and bumps under your skin. So switched the spots to inject in at least two to three centimeters away from your last injection. This is about the width of two fingers. You don't want to inject through your clothes or into any scars either. When you've decided where you'll inject. You're all ready to go.
[00:04:34] Injection. Hold your insulin pen in the palm of your hand. With your fingers wrapped around the pen like Paul. Look down to make sure you see the right number for your dose in the window and have your finger ready on the injection button. If you use a short needle; four, five, or six millimeters, you don't have to lift the skin when you inject. If you are using an eight millimeter needle which is longer, you will need to lift your skin. If you don't know your needle length check your box. Now for the injection. Put the pens straight not on an angle into your skin. Now press the injection button all the way in. Keep holding it and slowly count to ten. Then check the dose window again to make sure that it shows zero. This means that all the insulin is injected. Pull the needle out straight. And that's it.
[00:05:44] Dispose of your needle. Your needle should only be used once so after each injection you should get rid of it safely. Just use the needle cap to help remove the needle from the pen then put the pen cap back on. You'll need to put your used needles into a container made from hard plastic. Your local pharmacy can give you a special sharps container and some public washrooms have them too. When your sharps container is full, you can drop it off the pharmacy. It should not go into regular recycling or garbage. If you have any issues getting a sharps container or dropping it off you can always ask someone in your diabetes team or call 1 800 Banting.
[00:06:28] OK now let's review the nine steps of injecting insulin. Step one. Check your insulin. Step two. Load the insulin cartridge. Reusable pens only. Step three. Mix the insulin. Cloudy insulin only. Step Four. Attach the pen needle. Step Five. Prime the pen. Step Six. Set the dose. Step seven. Determine the injection site. Step eight. Inject. Step Nine. Dispose of the needle.
[00:07:26] To learn more about your insulin pen or to have some common questions answered click on one of these links.
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