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How Many Times Can I Reuse Lancets?

Nina Ghamrawi, MS, RD, CDE
June 3, 2024
June 10, 2024
2

Officially, all lancets are single use. Though reusing is a fact of life, and many people do it. People often do it to save money, or if they are running out and won't be able to buy more. Just like everything else, you need to be smart and do it in moderation. For example, fine needles like ours, 30g, can be safely used only twice without causing real problems.

Why Do we need to change lancets?

Since they are so fine, they are also delicate. Each time they puncture the skin, they cause microscopic burrs and dents in the needle. Each burr and dent makes the lancets hurt more and require more force to puncture the skin to draw blood.

Below is what happens to the needle over time when you reuse the same lancet. You don't really want a needle you used 6 times before to go into your skin. Throw the needle away.

Never, never, never use a needle that has been used by another person. It will not only be more painful with the second use, but it will transmit potential blood-borne pathogens. 🦠

How to Change the Strength of the Lancing Device

The number that you see at the tip of the lancing device is a depth gauge, not a count down indicator. The number 1-5 indicate the depth that the needle will go into the skin, with 1 being the shallowest and 5 being the deepest. The softer your skin, the shallower the needle needs to go to break a capillary. See more instructions in more of our articles!

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