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Diabetes & Insulin

Diabetes & Insulin

Where on my body should I inject insulin?

Review how to take your injections with your healthcare provider.

Choose one of the following sites listed below. Rotate the sites to keep scar tissue from building up:

  • Inject at least 2 inches away from the navel, scars and moles.
  • inject into fatty tissue on the back of the upper arm.
  • Inject into the middle or outer part of the thigh, keeping at least 4 inches above your knee and at least 4 inches away from the top of your leg.
  • Inject into the fatty tissue above the leg. (19)


How do I inject insulin?

If you use a syringe:

  1. Clean the injection site. Many people use alcohol swabs for this purpose.
  2. Pinch up a small area of skin (2-3 in wide).
  3. inject the insulin into the pinched skin at a 90-degree angle.
  4. Keep the needle in and let go of the pinched skin.
  5. Count to five slowly, then remove your needle. (20)

If you use an insulin pen:

  1. Screw on a new needle.
  2. Prime your pen with an air shot by injecting two units of insulin into the air. This removes any air and allows you to get the exact dose of insulin.
  3. Dial up your dose.
  4. Clean the injection site. Many people use alcohol swabs for this purpose.
  5. Hold the pen like a pencil. Make sure you can see the dosing window. Insert the needle straight into the skin. There is no need to pinch the skin.
  6. Push firmly on the close button and hold for five seconds, then remove the pen. (21)

Dispose of syringes, pen needles and lancets (sharps) properly. (22) Do not reuse syringes, to reduce the chance of infection.


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