What are the different types of insulin?
There are several types of Insulin. Each type starts to work at a different speed, known as “onset,” and its effects last a different length of time, known as “duration.” Most types of insulin reach a peak, which is when they have the strongest effect. Then the effects of the insulin wear off over the next few hours or so.
Types of Insulin and How They Work
Your doctor might also recommend premixed insulin, which is a mix of two types of insulin. Keep in mind that some types of insulin cost more than others.
What are the different ways to take insulin?
The way you take insulin may depend on multifarious aspects of your life such as lifestyle, insurance, plan and preferences. You may decide that needles are not for you and prefer a different method. Most people with diabetes use a needle, syringe, pen or insulin pump. Inhalers, injection ports, and jet injectors are less common.
1. Needle and Syringe
You would draw up your dose of insulin from the vial into the syringe. Insulin works fastest when you inject it in your belly, but you should alternate your spots. Other injection spots include your thigh, buttocks or upper arm.
An insulin pen looks like a pen but has a needle for its point. Some insulin pens come filled with
insulin and are disposable. Others have room for an insulin cartridge that you insert and then replace after use. Insulin pens cost more than needles and syringes but many people find them easier to use.
An insulin pump is a small machine that gives you small, steady doses of insulin throughout the day. You wear one type of pump outside your body on a belt, in a pocket or pouch. The insulin pump connects to a small plastic tube and a very small needle. You insert the needle under your skin and it stays in place for several days. Insulin then pumps from the machine through the tube into your body 24 hours a day. You also can give yourself doses of insulin through the pump at mealtimes. Another type of pump has no tubes and attaches directly to your skin, such as a self-adhesive pod.
Another way to take insulin is by breathing powdered insulin from an inhaler device into your mouth. The insulin goes into your lungs and moves quickly into your blood. Inhaled insulin is only for adults.
5. Injection Port
An injection port has a short tube that you insert into the tissue beneath your skin where an adhesive patch holds the port in place. You inject insulin through the port with a needle and syringe or an insulin pen. The port stays in place for 2-3 days. With an injection port, you no longer puncture your skin for each shot; only when you apply a new port.
6. Jet Injector
This device sends a fine spray of insulin into the skin at high pressure instead of using a needle to deliver the insulin.
The injection of insulin is essential for management of patients with type 1 diabetes and may be needed by patients with type 2 diabetes. The Spike App can help you better manage your diabetes by jumping in with reminders about insulin and food!