When you have diabetes, it can feel like your daily to-do list is endless. You're tracking your blood sugars, medications, diet, and exercise.
That can be a lot to take care of every day. It can make you feel burned out.
"When you have a chronic illness, everybody wants a day off from that, or a week or a month off," says David Spero, RN, author of Diabetes: Sugar-Coated Crisis.
But you can't do that with diabetes. So how do you avoid diabetes burnout and keep a positive mindset?
Some days will...
Rapid-acting insulin. This starts to work within a few minutes and lasts for a couple of hours.
Regular- or short-acting insulin. It takes about 30 minutes to work fully and lasts for 3 to 6 hours.
Intermediate-acting insulin. This takes 2 to 4 hours to work fully. Its effects can last for up to 18 hours.
Long-acting insulin. It can work for an entire day.
Your doctor may prescribe more than one type. You may need to take insulin more than once daily, to space your doses throughout the day, and possibly to also take other medicines. Your doctor will tell you exactly what you need.
How Do I Take It?
There are several different methods. You can give yourself an insulin injection using a needle and syringe, a cartridge system, or pre-filled pen systems. Inhaled insulin, insulin pumps, and a quick-acting insulin device are also available.
If you use an injectable insulin, the place on the body where you give yourself the shot may matter.
You'll absorb insulin the most consistently when you inject it into your belly. The next best places to inject insulin are your arms, thighs, and buttocks.
Make it a habit to inject insulin at the same general area of your body, but vary the exact injection spot. This helps minimize scarring under the skin.
If you use injectable insulin, always keep two bottles of each type of your insulin on hand. You can store the bottle that you are using at room temperature (not higher than 80 F) for 30 days. Keep it where it will not get too hot or too cold, and out of direct sunlight.