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When going out to eat, how and where do you inject?
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confused posted:
Hi again everyone,

Now that I'm on insulin and feeling so much better I wonder how others deal with eating out when using the insulin pens. My doctor has me injecting in the abdomen which sure doesn't feel like a good place to do it in public. But then, back when I gave myself allergy shots I never could get the hang of injecting in my arm, so I used the thigh. Again, not a great place to inject in public.

Am I supposed to use the restroom to do this? Inject before we go out? Inject in the car? Yes, as you can see, I'm still confused. LOL

I'm sure I'll have more questions as I continue this new part of my diabetic journey....and I really appreciate everyone here. Thanks in advance.
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Debsbears responded:
Confused I do not know when, where or how to inject insulin I am not on it but I have friends that are so here is what they do.

When they have to test they do it right there - they have the blood blotter or tissue and they clean up every thing immediately following the testing.

Little Lorie as we call her also has down syndrome so it doesn't bother her at all to do her insulin in her tummy while playing cards in front of us - it bothers some but me if she has to take her insulin I let her do it and it doesn't faze me.

My other friend will test her sugars and if needed she will turn herself around and inject into her stomach so no one can see her.

To me if someone has to do their insulin right then and there, then do it, turn around if you must or try to do it in the bathroom. To me there isn't a right way or wrong way.

But then I am not on insulin. I have tested just before a dinner once at a restaurant because I wasn't feeling right - I as quietly as I could tested under neath the table cloth that was hanging over the table - good thing I did I was only 69 and needed to eat. I hope this helps a little.
I shall wait upon the Lord and renew my strength.
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auriga1 responded:
Hi, confused. I use insulin myself. If no one is looking or can really see what I'm doing, I go ahead and inject in the abdomen. I've done it many times. However, wearing a dress (don't know if you are male or female) makes things a little difficult. I then have to make do with the restroom.

If you are talking about meal-time insulin, most say to take within 5-10 minutes of eating or 5 minutes after eating. As I don't know what insulin you are on I can't give a precise answer on whether to inject before you go out. Your best bet would be to ask your doctor. There are many insulins out there with varying directions. If you have the inserts to your insulin, check them out. Those inserts give you precise directions to the particular insulin you are taking on the timing of your injections and meals.

I've injected into the thigh, too. But most people have the most "cushion" in the abdominal area. My doctor also prefers the abdominal injections.

I realize you've started your journey. Pretty soon, you won't care where you are or who you are with. You are keeping yourself healthy and that's what counts.
 
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confused replied to auriga1's response:
Okay, those answers are tremendous helps. I'm supposed to inject, according to the insert no more than 15 minutes before a meal for the fast acting (if I need it) or for the Novolog 70/30. At least, that's what I read, although I probably read one insert and assumed the other one was the same. I have found that at home I can go up to 30 minutes after my dinner injections without eating before I start to feel "odd".

I'm female in my late 50's and kind of prudish about some things, lol. Obviously this is one of those things but I will take what I have been given and learn from others how best to handle this with grace.

Cheryl
 
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auriga1 replied to confused's response:
LOL, confused. O.K., hate to admit it, but we are in the same age category. Uh oh. LOL.

You probably can tell from the tone of my post I'm not prudish. People can be strange in how they react to many things, one being needles in public. As I said in my previous post, I make sure that no one can see me.

It takes a little getting used to things until you establish a routine. I had to drag the directions out a couple of times in the beginning. The one insulin, Lantus, is a 24-hr. acting one and has nothing to do with my meals. All I need to do is take it at the same time every day.

My Humalog is the rapid-acting one and starts to act on blood glucose within 10 minutes, so I usually take it right after I eat. It's hard for me to judge at mealtime how many carbs I eat until I am finished. I used to inject before I ate, but many times I realized I haven't eaten enough carbs until I go low. One thing I don't like to do is "feed" the insulin, so I inject afterwards.

It's a learning process every day. Pretty soon you'll be teaching and advising others.
 
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hoopdog22 responded:
I've watched people inject, and been bothered by it for years,and now as irony would predict I find myself havind to inject insulin, however I'm only required once a day so far and I choose to do it at 9pm.I'm usually home but I have been out a few times to theatre, cinema, concerts etc, where I just simply go to the washroom, do it in the tummy and come back to my seat. I'm not ashamed to have this but I also don't believe its any sort of a badge of honour as so many people appear to treat it. I believe its a thing of privacy and with testing as the sight of blood bothers so many people, its just best to keep it to ones self.
 
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RufusWoodyIII responded:
I am 66, male, and use 2 types of insulin -- fast-acting before or immediately after a meal, and slow-acting before bedtime. I eat out a lot so I have to do the fast-acting in public, but I try to be discreet; at the worst, I have to go to the men's restroom to tuck my shirt back in. I test before each use and I do that publicly 3 times per day, before each meal. Nobody has blanched or barfed or even commented, but they also may not notice since I am fairly discreet (I don't pull my bare stomach up onto the table to show everyone (LOL)). Hope this helps. Good luck to you. Be brave and take good care of yourself.
 
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confused replied to RufusWoodyIII's response:
Okay! Thank you all for the good ideas. I finally went out to dinner for the first time last night. On the drive over there, since hubby was driving, I tested, then got my insulin pens ready and had him park in a fairly empty section of the lot...then injected before leaving the car. That seemed to work, however that won't always be an option. So, I guess I'll have to grit my teeth and use the restroom other times.

I am a little puzzled that you say you figure out how many carbs you'll be eating and inject for that. My doctor has me injecting the fast acting one based on what I test at before a meal. I find if I want to eat a carb, I need to add a unit or two to the number on the chart he gave me...which I dutifully log in my log book for him to see when I go in next time.
 
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auriga1 replied to confused's response:
Confused, each doctor is different when prescribing a regimen of insulin.

My doctor presribed the rapid-acting insulin according to the number of carbs I eat. It is called a ratio. Each patient's ratio is different depending on their metabolism. Again, that's trial and error to see what ratio works best for that particular patient. I started out at 1 unit of Humalog to every 15 grams of carbs I eat. That wasn't working as well as it should according to my 2-hr. reading after a meal. So it was adjusted to 1 unit of insulin to every 10 grams of carbs. Then I was going to low, so it was readjusted to 1 unit of Humalog to every 12 grams of carbs I eat.

I'm to test before a meal, also. If I'm above 120, then I add 1 more unit of Humalog to the dosage I take for the carbs I eat. In the past few years, I rarely am over 120 as the Lantus (the 24-hour insulin) takes care of that. All I do these days is take enough Humalog to cover the carbs I eat. The less carbs I eat, the less insulin I have to take. Good all around. Any extra Humalog I would have to take is called the correction factor.

As I stated previously, I take my rapid-acting insulin right after a meal because I can accurately count the carbs I just ate.

Well, you did it. Congrats. The restroom is not so bad.
 
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Haylen_WebMD_Staff responded:
Hi everyone!

As most of you know, I'm the WebMD community moderator. I do not have diabetes and have not had a family member or close friend who is diabetic so I had not experience with testing and injecting.

However, last weekend I went to a birthday party and sat across from a friend-of-a-friend who is Type 2. Before the food was served, he got out his kit, tested, pulled up his shirt and gave himself an injection. Of course, I knew what was going on mentioned that I moderate this community and we had a conversation about the challenges he faces. However, two friends at the table were visibly disturbed. I think I would have been more uneasy if I had my children with me - it might have freaked them out but could have opened a discussion about diabetes.

Also, we face similar discussions in the pregnancy and parenting communities about breast feeding in public.

I'm glad you got good info confused and happy you're part of our community

Haylen
 
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auriga1 replied to Haylen_WebMD_Staff's response:
Haylen, I completely understand about people getting disturbed. There are ways to do it mostly undected. If I am in a setting around a lot of people, I can test in my lap if at a table. I'm usually sitting with my family and they completely understand.

It could have opened a discussion about diabetes. There are so many people who are completely ignorant about diabetes. I don't mean that in a derogatory sense. I only test in public when I feel a low coming on. There's not much I can do. When I feel low, I am weak and can barely walk. I NEED to sit down. This is where ignorance comes in regarding diabetes. I need a few minutes to feel better after testing and taking in some glucose. Most people do not know this. If I don't have to test in public, I do not. I do understand it does freak some people out.

It may have freaked out your kids, but this is all around us, too. It's a great learning experience for them. If they can't handle it, you would know then. They can be shielded it it bothers them.

In general, if some people see blood anywhere, they will fall on the floor. Took plebotomy in college and I can't even count on my fingers how many people passed out. Boys and girls. LOL. Even my own classmates.

Breast feeding in public is like discussing religion and politics. Can get very volatile.
 
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confused replied to auriga1's response:
Thanks for the continuing feedback. It all helps make things easier to deal with.


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