Technique to administer insulin to another individual

Fact Checked

If an individual is diagnosed with diabetes, the doctor might prescribe insulin to help control the blood sugar level in the body. Insulin is a hormone normally generated in the pancreas but in some types of diabetes, the organ could not produce adequate amounts. It simply means that after eating a meal, the blood sugar level of an individual can increase substantially which is considered unhealthy. Even though many diabetics, even children can learn to administer insulin independently, it is vital that you learn how to administer a shot to another person, whether a family member or a friend.


You have to identify a site for the injection. Remember that there are various potential sites including the upper exterior arms, belly, upper thighs, hips and buttocks. A diabetic individual absorbs insulin fastest as long as it is injected beneath the skin of the belly, but it is vital to rotate the injection sites in order to prevent injury to the skin. You can ask the individual for any suggestions on the site that he/she has not recently used.

Wash hands to ensure that they are clean as possible to reduce the risk for infection. You do not need any fancy preparations, simply washing the hands with water and soap is enough. Wipe the membrane on top of the insulin bottle using an alcohol swab to take away any contamination.

Remove the cap of the syringe and pull the plunger back to fill the syringe with air up to the line of the syringe that corresponds with the amount of insulin the individual needs. Insert the needle into the bottle of insulin and depress the syringe plunger to add the air to the bottle. This helps prevent the formation of a vacuum in the insulin bottle while extracting the medication. Turn the bottle upside down with the syringe in place and draw back the plunger to fill the syringe with insulin to the line that corresponds to the right dose.

If an individual is diagnosed with diabetes, the doctor might prescribe insulin to help control the blood sugar level in the body.

Administering the medication

You have to wipe a small area of the skin where the insulin is going to be administered using an alcohol swab. Pinch a small amount of skin between the thumb and pointer finger and then insert the needle all the way at a 90-degree angle to the skin. Release the pinch and inject the insulin. Make sure that the shot is administered subcutaneously which is right below the skin. When injecting a child or slim adult without much body fat, insert the needle into a pinch of skin at a 45-degree angle.

Wait for about 5 seconds before removing the needle to prevent the insulin from seeping out via the injection site which can reduce the effectiveness of the dose. In case there is clear fluid or blood after taking out the needle from the skin, apply pressure on the injection site or instruct the individual to add pressure on the site for several seconds.

Dispose of the insulin syringe properly by storing it into a puncture-proof container. Do not attempt to recap the syringe since this increases the risk for accidental punctures. Similarly, do not try to bend or break the needle on the syringe before placing in a disposal bin.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The information posted on this page is for educational purposes only.
If you need medical advice or help with a diagnosis contact a medical professional

  • All content is reviewed by a medical professional and / sourced to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

  • We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable websites, academic research institutions and medical articles.

  • If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, out-of-date, or otherwise questionable, please contact us through our contact us page.