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To achieve tight blood sugar control with intensive insulin therapy, you must follow a strict treatment regimen.
You'll need frequent doses of insulin. You may need an injection of short-acting insulin before each meal and an injection of intermediate or long-acting insulin before you go to bed.
Or you may choose to use an insulin pump, which releases insulin into your body through a plastic tube placed under the skin on your abdomen. The pump delivers a continuous infusion of short-acting insulin and a bolus — extra insulin to cover an expected rise in blood sugar — before meals.
Intensive insulin therapy may lead to:
Low blood sugar. When you have tight blood sugar levels, any change in your daily routine — such as exercising more than usual or not eating enough — may cause low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
Be aware of early signs and symptoms, such as anxiety, sweating and shaking, and respond quickly. Drink a glass of orange juice or suck on a few pieces of hard candy. Your doctor may recommend carrying glucose tablets.
Intensive insulin therapy is recommended for most people who have type 1 diabetes and some people who have type 2 diabetes — but it isn't right for everyone.
Intensive insulin therapy may not be for you if:
Ultimately, it's up to you and your health care team to decide if intensive insulin therapy is for you. This decision should be based on the potential risks and benefits the therapy may offer for your specific situation.
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