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How to Use a Syringe

By Contributing Writer ; Updated July 27, 2017

A syringe is an important piece of medical equipment for many individuals ranging from nurses to patients. Many individuals with allergies, vitamin deficiencies and diabetes must use syringes to inject their medicine. With advancements in modern medicine, syringes have changed for the better. With shorter needles, longer reservoirs and virtually painless injections, syringes are now more user-friendly than ever. While using a syringe seems like a simple process, there are key steps you must follow.

Gather everything you need. When using a syringe, there are several things you must have at your disposal: cotton balls, rubbing alcohol, a syringe and a medically approved syringed disposal case. Gather all of these products and have them ready prior to using the syringe. This will make the process smoother.

Prep the area. When you inject medicine into your skin via a syringe, you are a creating a tiny open wound. In order to minimize the possibility of infection, wash your hands with an antibacterial soap and use a towel to dry your hands off. Soak a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol and rub it over the intended injection area. Allow the alcohol to dry.

Prep the syringe. Once the area is sterilized, it's time to prep the syringe. Remove the cap from the end of the syringe and toss it in the garbage. Take the needle cap off the syringe and keep it close by. Once the cap is removed, pull the loading piece of the syringe as far as you can without removing it. This will fill the syringe reservoir up with air and prep the syringe for the next step.

Load the syringe. Once the syringe is filled up with air you are ready to move on. Insert the needle of the syringe into the foam part of the vial containing the medicine you will be injecting. Once the needle is fully inserted, slowly release the air that is stored inside the syringe into the vial. You will notice this will create bubbles. Once you have fully released all of the air, slowly pull the loading piece back and load the syringe with medicine. It is important to do this slowly so you do not get air bubbles inside the syringe. Once you have fully loaded the syringe, remove it from the vial and continue to the next step.

Give yourself the injection. Take a deep breath and relax. Count to 10 and insert the needle into your skin. Slowly release the medicine into your body. Do not do this too fast or you will encounter burning and irritation at the injection site. Once you have injected all of the medicine, remove the syringe. Put the cap back on the syringe and immediately dispose of it in the syringe disposal case.


Choose an appropriate sized syringe depending on the amount of medicine you're injecting. Typically, smaller syringes have smaller needles so if you don't need a large syringe, don't use one.


Do not leave a used syringe lying around. This is a health hazard for anyone that comes into contact with it and medically unsanitary. Instead, immediately dispose of the syringe after using it.

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