As a insulin-dependent diabetic (Type 2), a primary challenge has always been to figure out the right amount of Insulin to take, and deal with the fact that injected insulin, despite being referred to as “rapid”, has a 4-hour absorption curve. That means that if I had a meal but didn’t take enough insulin, I’d be stuck with the elevated blood-glucose level for another 4 hours. As this happens to me fairly often, this is quite detrimental to my health, long-term.
A few months ago, an amazing company by the name of Mannkind released the perfect solution – Affreza…inhalable insulin with a super-rapid acting time of less than an hour. Finally, I can take an insulin correction and have it take effect within minutes rather than hours. In addition, this gets rid of the need to tear holes into my flesh (not to mention worrying about sterility, disposing of used needles, and finding a place to perform the injections while out of the house without freaking people out).
So, if you’re a diabetic and never heard of Afrezza, go ask your endocrinologist about it…it WILL change your life! However, when I first tried Afrezza, I ran into an unpleasant and detrimental side effect…coughing. Afrezza comes as a powder that you inhale deeply, and my body’s defenses against foreign bodies flared up, causing me a severe cough that led to the Afrezza powder being coughed-out before it had the chance to do its work. Today I want to share not only the news about Afrezza, but also my way of handling the challenge.
After speaking with Mannkind and other Afrezza users, I learned that a cough is not uncommon, and most people get used to the powder and stop coughing within a few weeks of continued use…so if you’re coughing, don’t give up on it…fight though it and you should get used to it pretty fast. If not, however (like me), I did figure out two tricks.
The 1st trick is that drinking some liquid after inhaling seems to suppress the cough. This can be water, juice or anything you like drinking. The only trick is to be able to hold the cough for a few seconds until you can get a sip in. Using this method, I was able to avoid coughing 90% of the time.
A few weeks later, though, I found an even more effective way. As it turns out, my cough-defense can actually be fooled into “thinking” I’m OK by simply coughing AHEAD of taking the medicine. By intentionally coughing once or twice before inhaling the Afrezza I was able to get myself to be “coughed out” enough so that when I did inhale the drug, I wouldn’t cough at all! I’ve been using the 2nd work-around for months now, with great satisfaction. Now Afrezza works for me 100% of the time, and as a result, I’m very close to 100% balanced, with a super low HBA1C values (probably even better than most pump users).
Hope you find Afrezza to be useful, and the above tips useful as well!