10 Jun 2015

Writing Resources: Insulin and Other Diabetic Stuff

Hello there, gorgeous people!

If you clicked on this post then you’re probably either a) a writer or b) one of my friends. Either way, I’m glad you clicked on it. Today, in part two of my Writing Resources series/project/thing, I’ll be talking about the nitty gritty of Type One Diabetes.

Firstly, if you have no idea what this is or who I am, click here to read the introduction post I did. Secondly, check out the first part where I talked about things non-Diabetics shouldn’t say to Diabetics. Now, let’s get started.

I’m talking mainly about the more medical side today. I’m going to try and keep everything in the most basic of terms, but if there’s anything you don’t understand please feel free to leave me a comment or e-mail me. Also, I mentioned this in the first post, but this is just my experiences—every one has different symptoms and effects and opinions and preferences so please just remember that.

The first and most important thing…Insulin. This stuff saves lives, literally—it’s the only reason I’m still alive. For those of you who might not know, insulin is created in your pancreas and is pumped through your body to keep your blood sugar at a reasonable level. Those of us who are diagnosed with Diabetes have a pancreas that decided to stop producing insulin for no reason, because of that we need to inject insulin.

There are a few different ways we can do this. There’s the typical syringe method, though I’ve never met a Diabetic who has willingly done this as it means measuring up your own doses. Secondly, there’s this invention called an ‘Insulin pump’—it’s basically this little machine that is attached to your body (usually stomach or legs) that administers insulin. I use the third method, insulin pens. This is basically a ‘pen’ that has (usually) about 3mL of insulin in it. You attach a little needle to one end, turn a dial on the other (depending on the amount o what to inject) and there you go. Each person has their own preference, I’ve only ever used the pens but I like them and they suit me, and my lifestyle.

Secondly, we have blood glucose metres/blood sugar metres/monitors/many other things. These are the ‘finger pricks’ that many non-Diabetics have told me that they are terrified of. They aren’t the worse things in existence, really. So these are little (or big) machines that tell us the amount of glucose in our bodies, which then tells us how much insulin we’ll need. Basically, we put these little strips into the machine, prick our fingers and squeeze out enough blood until the machine makes (usually) a (very loud) noise.

Here’s a fun fact. Despite the fact I’ve tried this many times, you can’t just guess what your bloods (little slang term) will be. Attempting to do this is something that will make your care team very angry with you. Doing these tests suck because sometimes you end up doing them up to six or eight times a day. I have these little red dots on the sides of my fingers from testing so much and I’ve seen other people whose fingers have gotten infected. No, these tests don’t actually hurt that much but it is a daily reminder that you are different to your friend, which sometimes, sucks more than the disease itself.

I’m going to do yet another post just on blood sugar levels—what’s a good level, what’s not, how certain levels make you feel and all that. I feel like this one is getting a bit longer and I don’t want to bombard you all with too much.

I hope this post helped you somehow. Let me know if there’s another topic you’d like me to discuss or find other resources about. Thank you all for stopping by!

*Bonus content: Googling 'blood sugars' all turns out to be a fun time.