Living with diabetes blog

Needle anxiety: Injecting insulin in public

By Nancy Klobassa Davidson, R.N. and Peggy Moreland, R.N., C.D.E. April 10, 2010

First question: How many of you on injectable diabetes medication give your injection in front of others at a restaurant or other public place?

Second question: What kind of response did you receive from those around you when you injected yourself?

Did anyone freak out and say things like:

  • I hate needles, how can you do that?
  • Don't do that in front of me, or if you do let me know so I can turn around and don't have to watch.
  • How can you do that, doesn't it hurt?
  • Do you have to do that every time you eat?

Do you have needle anxiety when it comes to taking your insulin in front of other people? Do you run into the bathroom and quickly take your insulin when your food arrives at the restaurant? Do you risk having hypoglycemia (low blood glucose) because you take your insulin before you go to the restaurant (too early) and the insulin is working before your dinner is served?

Or, are you comfortable in your diabetes management and realize it's best to take your rapid insulin when the food arrives for adequate meal coverage on your insulin program.

Clearly, the public needs to be educated on this subject. Are there any suggestions on how to do this? How do you think Hollywood handles the subject?

Tell me what you think.


April 10, 2010