For diabetics, maintaining proper blood glucose levels is crucial for living a healthy and normal lifestyle. When blood sugar levels get too high or too low, there can be health complications or death in severe cases. One way diabetics maintain proper glucose levels is by daily injections of insulin.
But for people with diabetes who take multiple injections daily, an insulin pump offers them a more simple and effective way to manage their blood glucose levels. Insulin pumps have several functions and features, so people with diabetes have more control of their insulin therapy.
How Insulin Pumps Work
Insulin pumps are small devices that work much like the pancreas by continuously delivering small amounts of short-acting insulin into the body. The continuous delivery of insulin is known as the basal rate.
The pump also provides additional insulin when a meal is consumed, known as a bolus. The basal rate and bolus rate quantities of insulin are programmed into the pump based on your needs and eating habits.
Six Functions of an Insulin Pump
Some functions and features of a diabetes insulin pump are minor, while others are crucial, so it’s essential to understand which features play the most significant roles in your insulin therapy.
Basal Rate Profile Storage
Since the basal rate continuously delivers insulin, it’s essential to have different settings programmed into the pump for different situations such as workout days, vacations, holidays, and other occasions when your eating or exercise habits change.
Set a Temporary Basal Rate
The temporary basal function is helpful for temporarily lowering your basal rate by a certain percentage for a certain period of time, such as before a workout or at times when you go without eating for several hours.
Different Bolus Options
Insulin pumps vary in design and the way they operate, and they all offer different methods of bolus delivery. Some bolus deliveries include delayed bolus, split bolus, square wave bolus, and multi-wave bolus. The different bolus deliveries are vital because they break down insulin delivery in parts rather than delivering a large amount all at once.
Insulin Level Display
An insulin level display is essential because it informs you of how much insulin is in your bloodstream. If you don’t know your blood glucose levels, you can’t make the proper adjustments for healthy glucose levels.
Bolus and Insulin Calculator
The bolus/insulin calculator is a helpful function when you need to calculate your insulin dose while taking into account your active carbohydrates.
Hypoglycemia shutdown is a crucial function that delivers insulin to the body when blood sugar levels get too low and become dangerous or life-threatening.
You should get familiar with your insulin pump and understand each feature and function and how they work. In addition, you should always make sure your diabetes insulin pump is working as it should and have it checked and inspected regularly. If you’re in need of a new pump, you can try contacting places like Tandem Diabetes.
Also Read: Best Diet For Diabetes : What We Should Eat