How to Give an Insulin Injection

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Feb 02, 2013

How to Give an Insulin InjectionType 1 diabetics need to take insulin and also those type 2 diabetics who are not able to control their blood sugar level through oral medications. Women with gestational diabetes may also need to take insulin if diet and exercise is not good enough for them to keep blood sugar level normal.


[Read: Foods that cause Type 2 Diabetes]

Once you are past the stage of initial anxiety, giving yourself an injection will become a routine part of your day. It's quite easy to learn the basics of drawing the insulin up into a syringe and injecting it. Although never likeable, the pain of the injection is not very bad and the best part is that it does not last long. More than half a million people do it every day. There is no reason why you can’t.


[Read: How does Insulin Work in Type 2 Diabetes]


The three most important elements of success in giving insulin injections are:

  • Ensure that you have the right dosage of insulin. Be very careful if you have two types of insulin in one syringe.
  • Learn how to give injection.
  • Storing the insulin after using it, in order to prevent damage.
  • Storing the insulin properly so that each subsequent dose works effectively.


Insulin is injected just beneath the skin into the fat layer. If the needle gets injected into the muscle, the insulin gets absorbed too fast, i.e. moves into the blood stream very quickly. Areas of your body where insulin is injected are the stomach (abdomen) and the outer parts of the upper arms. You may also inject in the buttocks, front and both sides of the thighs, and fleshy hip areas.


[Read: The Normal Insulin Levels in Diabetes]

Procedure of giving insuling injection

  • Choose the injection site on your body.
  • The body area chosen should be clean for which an alcohol pad or simple soap with water can be used.
  • Use your thumb and fore finger to pinch the skin and fat.
  • Hold the syringe at an angle of 90 degrees with the other hand. It should be 45 degrees for thin people or children.
  • Now, push the needle into the skin all the way to the fatty layer. If you do not inject it far enough, the insulin may not get injected into the fatty layer. When injecting the insulin, let go of the pinched skin.
  • Press the plunger of the injection with your thumb steadily until insulin is completely injected.
  • Be cautious in pulling out the needle at the same angle at which it was put in. Immediately press the site of injection to prevent insuling from oozing out.
  • Use one syringe only once. Shut the lid of insulin container tightly. Throw the used syringe without recapping it.


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