Have you recently been diagnosed with diabetes? Receiving the news that you have a serious illness can leave you confused and overwhelmed. However, diabetes is not a death sentence. With proper management, you can live a long healthy and productive life. After a diabetes diagnosis lancing will become an important part of successful diabetes management in your life.
What Are Lancets?
Lancets are small, fine and sharp-pointed needles that are used to prick the skin during blood glucose monitoring. For many diabetes patients, learning to check their blood sugar can be challenging. In this article, we look at the commonly asked questions about using lancet devices for blood sugar monitoring.
Here are the top 5 FAQs about using a lancet.
- How Do I Use A Diabetes Lancet?
If you are using a Pip lancet, the blood glucose monitoring process is very easy. Start by washing your hands then select a spot where you will test. Twist the lancet cap to remove the lancet and push it gently against your skin to draw blood. Once done, dispose of the lancet in the appropriate container and that’s it.
- Are All Lancets The Same?
There are several lancet brands in the market today and most of them vary considerably in size. For children especially, blood sugar testing can be extremely painful if you are using the wrong length of the needle. If you are using Pip lancets is always recommended that you start with the blue Pip lancets since they are the smallest and most comfortable for most people including children.
- Can A Lancet Be Reused?
It is highly recommended that you use your lancet just once. Reusing a safety lancet increases the risk of contracting infections and getting accidental pokes. Many diabetics are sensitive to infections and this is why you should use your lancet just once before disposing of. A reused lancet can also become very dull and this could be the reason why you have been experiencing finger pricking pain.
- Do Lancets Expire?
Yes, diabetes lancets do expire and that’s why it is very important to check the expiry date indicated on the box of lancets. Do not use expired lancets as they can cause a skin infection due to loss of sterility. If you notice that your diabetes lancets have expired dispose of in your sharps box and acquire new ones that have not expired.
- How Should I Dispose of A Used Lancet?
It is always advisable to use a sharps box to dispose of your used lancets. Most hospitals sell sharps boxes and some give them out for free. If you do not have a sharps box at home, do not worry, you can also use a hard puncture-proof container to dispose of your lancets. The container you choose should be clear to avoid the risk of children or drug users trying to open the bottle. Avoid throwing the lancets in the garbage bin as they could harm your children and neighbors. Once the container is full, you can take it to the local hospital for safe disposal.