Wearing an Insulin Pump

Wear your insulin pump your way
Wear your insulin pump your way

There’s usually a choice of options available for how to wear your insulin pump for a range of activities.

Some of these options have been creatively found by insulin pump users and shared amongst the pump using community and other options are provided by the range of insulin pump accessories that are available.

Wear it proud

If you’re proud of your pump and are happy to show it off, an insulin pump clip is a versatile option that can allow you to attach your pump to a belt, pocket or waistband.

In some cases, such as when on public transport, you may still wish to cover your pump to deter any would be thieves that may mistake your pump for an MP3 players or other electronic item.

Do some textile DIY

This one’s a popular option amongst those with a bit of sewing skill.

A number of insulin pump users have modified clothing to add extra pockets, either inside or outside clothing, to hold their insulin pump.

Patch pumps

These pumps, such as the OmniPod from Ypsomed, don’t need to be held as they stick onto the skin at the infusion site.

In some cases though, you may want to think ahead and consider which infusion site to use if you’re planning to take part in sport or wear a particular garment say for a formal event or ball.

At work or formal wear

If your pump has a remote, you can happily wear your pump under a shirt. If you have a pump without a remote, a leather pump case can look almost identical to a leather mobile phone case

Those of us that are female can wear our pumps in a bra pouch if that’s comfortable for you.

At night

There are a few options for wearing a pump at night which vary from keeping your pump loose beside you, laying it on the floor beside you and wearing the pump in or under pyjamas/night wear. Sewing an extra pocket into nightwear tends to be a popular option.

With a dress

Depending on the type of dress, you may be able to wear your pump in a bra pouch or in a thigh pouch. Holding the pump within tights is another option that can work as long as the weather is not too warm.

Clipping your pump securely to a leg garter is one option and tends to be popular for brides on their wedding day, especially if the dress allows, or is modified to allow, relatively easy access to the pump controls.

At the beach

A good option for a day at the beach, is an insulin pouch which can be brightly coloured or otherwise styled to fit in with your look.

If you’re looking to keep your pump hidden under clothing, the pump can put worn within a swimsuit or underneath a t-shirt or board shorts. For girls, a sarong can cover your pump whilst preserving your beach look.

Note that it is a good idea to keep your insulin pump from becoming exposed to the sun for too long as the effectiveness of the insulin could become affected by the warmth and you may experience a greater likelihood of having buubles developing in the reservoir and/or tubing.

Sport

Some of the considerations will include how to secure and protect your pump, how to avoid the tubing catching on anything (or anyone else) and whether the position of your pump will allow full freedom of movement and performance.

When pregnant

During the later stages of pregnancy, if the skin of your belly becomes taught, it can be more difficult using the abdomen as an infusion site and you may start to encounter problems with the infusion set staying attached and may experience irritation at the site.

Therefore, it may be advisable to make good use of your abdomen area during the first part of your pregnancy and then switch to using your thighs, buttocks, hips or either side of your lower back during the later stages of pregnancy.

Some people may find they do not need to avoid their abdomen at any time during their pregnancy. If you’re comfortable using your abdomen and are not experiencing problems then you can happily carry on using your belly.