Whether you’re newly diagnosed or an insulin user for years, shopping for insulin pumps can be intimidating. In your shopping process, you may have heard the good, the bad, and the ugly about which pump is best to use, but you will discover what to look for when buying insulin pumps.
After being diagnosed, the first term you’ll start hearing is basal rate. It is also called background insulin because you’ll need to shoot a set quantity of insulin into your body either one or two times each day; this is known as basal insulin. Insulin pumps allow you to set your daily volume of insulin to inject into your body. The amount of insulin you inject depends on your age, sensitivity, and any other factors.
The meaning of bolus
Another word that you’ll hear often is bolus. It’s the amount of insulin you’ll need to adjust high blood sugar and meals. If you’re someone who’s on multiple injections, the bolus is the amount of fast-acting insulin you use. Children on insulin require only a small bolus. On the other hand, teens will require more bolus dosage.
While some persons are OK with a tubed pump, others feel better with a pump attached to them 24/7. The onus is on you to decide which pump is suitable for you, patch insulin pumps or infusion sets.
It’s required that you file your pump cartridge, reservoir, or pod with insulin regularly. There are different kinds of pumps with varying unit measurements, such as the YpsoPump, which measures up to 160 units of insulin. Pods generally have up to 200 units and others that hold up to 300 units.
Continuous glucose monitoring
A Continuous Glucose Monitor is used to closely and continuously monitor your blood sugar. If you’re already using one of these monitors, you should check if it works with your pump. You can also use a stand-alone pump you choose with an insulin pump. Other monitors work with specific insulin pumps.
Knowing your body type is essential when taking insulin. For example, whether your body size is thin, you’re pregnant athletic, you should consider all this when choosing insulin pumps. Infusion sets have three main categories, 90 degrees angle, 30-degree angle, and 90-degree steel infusion set.
Lock or unlocked pump
There are things to think about when choosing a pump, such as will you use it on a child? If this is the case, you should be able to lock the settings, so they cannot reach it. An insulin pump from a reliable place like Tandem Diabetes with buttons is easier to handle but ensure you keep it out of the way if you’re using it on a small child.
Available payment options
If you don’t have insurance coverage to cover the cost of your pump, you should talk to the representative and find out what their payment plan looks like if they have any. If you have insurance, ensure that it’s covered before deciding.
Acquiring an insulin pump can be overwhelming, and it’s crucial that you know about the features of the pump you like before deciding on it.
Robert Haynes did his degree in psychology at the University of Hertfordshire. He is interested in mental health and well-being.