7 tips for injecting yourself with Humira for the first time
Today I want to talk about my top tips if you're injecting yourself for the first time with Humira (also called Adalimumab). This can seem really daunting at first, especially if you've not taken any biologics in the past.
I've been injecting myself for a few months now so I consider myself a bit of a pro injecting so I thought I'd share my advice. I know there are biosimilars out there now and the instructions might vary between different drugs so these are based on my experiences of Humira.
1. Watch some videos before injecting
You might have a healthcare professional show you how to inject but I personally find watching the YouTube videos just as useful because you can also keep referring back to them.
There are a few steps that you'll need to follow and this will depend on the medicine that you're on but such as: removing the caps; checking the expiry date; checking that it's liquid and not frozen and how long to inject for. I watch this youtube video each time just to inject. I've also made my own short video doing it here.
2. Don't overthink it
So one of the hardest things is actually just plucking up the courage to inject yourself. A lot of us really psych ourselves up and imagine it to be so much worse and so much more painful than it usually is.
It's worth noting that in lots of countries, Humira is essentially a pain-free drug. Since they removed the citrate from it, it doesn't hurt. Honestly, I don't really flinch when I inject now as you can see in the video I made of me injecting myself.
3.Pick a fatty part of your body to inject
So it's always best to pick a fatty part of your body to inject which will make it hurt less as well. Personally, I was recommended to inject my thighs but other people prefer to inject them in their stomachs.
It doesn't really matter as long as you're able to grab hold of an area and inject into it confidently and that you're injected into the skin. However, some people recommend you regularly change your injecting position if you're prone to bruising.
4. Don't look at the needle
Honestly, when you first inject yourselves and imagining the needle to be really big but it isn't. However, there's no need to look at all as it's covered by the cap!
Please don't imagine it to be a huge scary needle as that's not the case.
5. Don't press down too hard
The first time I injected, I pressed down too hard and caused a lovely big bruise the next day. You really don't need to forcefully press down just place the needle over your leg and push.
6.Count to 10
My next tip would be to always count to at least ten before removing the injection from yourself. This is to make sure that all the medicine goes into you. You should also check this by looking at the little window which will usually turn yellow (an indicator that there's no more medicine left).
Again, this will vary depending on which medication you're on but just make sure you're not too quick and eager to get rid of the injection that you don't use all the medication!
7. Expect side effects
Finally, I thought I'd mention a few more side effects to watch out for. As mentioned before, you might have a nice bruise afterward!
I also struggled with feeling foggy, as talked about in my Humira diary. Because of this, I started to inject in the evening because when I injected in the morning, I just felt too tired for the rest of the day.
I hope these tips have been helpful. Have you taken the drug Humira?
Does exercising regularly help in the management of your symptoms?