You are served a nice plate of steaming food and just from the sight of it your stomach rumbles even more. Eager to eat the food, you reach into your diabetes bag and take out your testing kit. No big deal. You’ll just test, take your insulin, and be done with it. Now that you are finished you put away your testing kit and eat.
Not exactly. Disposing your sharps is not as easy as you think. Sure, you may have thought that you put your lancet away but perhaps it drops.You may find your sharps and other diabetes trash on the ground at home and just simply pick it up and throw it away without a care. But think of the other people around you, diabetic or non-diabetic.
People can get pricked by your lancet…and this is exactly what happened to me.
I was at a sleep-away camp for a week, and like all preteens/teens, WE LOVE FOOD. I knew that I had my Dexcom which is a small device that tracks your blood sugar, but I decided to test anyways because it was late at night, and if my blood sugar was rising or falling I could take action immediately. After I was finished testing, I ate, and didn’t think about it again. Until I had to.
The executive director of camp wanted to talk to me and I was confused. I went to her and she asked if I knew if I knew what she was holding. And of course I knew what she was holding, it was my light blue lancet. She then told me that a camper saw the lancet on the ground and gave it to his counselor wondering what it was and in the process of that, the counselor had pricked his finger, which probably wouldn’t have been as big of a deal if it hadn’t been used. I was concerned that the counselor may have gotten hurt but I didn’t understand why it was such a big deal. However, since it was used and had pricked my blood, he could’ve gotten a blood transmitted disease. From here on, I finally understood why diseases like Hepatitis B was such a big deal and not from a dramatic commercial about buying medication for it.
After camp was over, the counselor and I went to an Urgent Care Center and got our blood tested. I am still waiting for the results and am nervous for the boy and for me, but now I realize that just a little sharp can make such a big impact in someone’s life.
My mom had been constantly telling me to throw away my diabetes trash right away but kids don’t listen until they actually suffer the consequences and now I had learned, and I hope you learn from reading this how important it is to throw away your sharps.
From this experience, my mom and I learned how to make DIY sharps containers, we made a small one to fit in my diabetes bag and a big one to put in my room.
Here is the website to learn how to make them/the importance of putting away sharps after usage:
This is how mine turned out:
I hope you enjoyed this blog post! Bye!
P.S. Happy Fourth of July!