You can easily learn how to give a B12 injection at home, either to yourself or to someone else. The following instructions assume that you bought our injectable B12, but the same principles apply to any other B12 shot kits.
Vitamin B12 Injection Instructions
Don’t worry, giving yourself a B12 shot will become second-nature after just a few attempts. We’ll teach you how to do it subcutaneously (SQ) rather than intramuscularly (IM). Reason being, IM is painful and puts people off self-injecting. SQ is great, because it’s totally painless and has a long history of efficient B12 delivery.
So, how to self inject B12?
B12 in liquid form is extremely light sensitive (meaning, it undergoes photolysis, or destruction by light). If your B12 vial came pre-dissolved, then immediately cover it with aluminum foil to keep light away.
For that reason, we advise to buy your B12 in powder form and keep it dry until when you start injecting. In dry form it is remarkably stable to both heat and light. After you dissolve your B12 in saline (which absorbs better than water, and is less painful), immediately cover with aluminum foil.
Dissolving our 40mg methyl B12 vial in 10ml of saline takes up to two hours. So, wait for at least two hours before you start injecting. Don’t shake the vial, but you may gently roll it on a flat surface if you wish. Either way, when you give yourself vitamin B12 injections at home, store the vial in the fridge or any cool environment of 5-25°C / 41-77°F degrees.
Subcutaneous (SQ) or Intramuscular (IM)?
Should you inject your B12 IM or SQ?
Both are good.
As we said, we recommend subcutaneous, because it’s painless, extremely easy to do yourself, and carries no risk of nerve injury. Intramuscular injections can be painful, and that puts people off self-injecting. And it’s not like IM is required, because vitamin B12 has a long, documented history of great subcutaneous delivery.
Best Sites to Inject B12?
Here are the common B12 subcutaneous injection sites:
Where to give B12 injections? For most people, the stomach will be best, because it tends to have the most fat. This is where we normally advise to inject.
How to Give Yourself a B12 Injection (SQ)
Here’s how to give a B12 shot subcutaneously:
- To prevent infection, wash your hands before giving a B12 shot. The skin is the body’s first defense against infection, so wash the injection site too (with an alcohol swab or soap). Wait until the area dries out.
- Draw B12 from the vial into your syringe of choice (for our B12 vials we like 0.3ml insulin syringes). You may need to push and pull the plunger back and forth a couple of times, in a pumping motion. Avoid touching the needle on the glass bottom of the vial, because it might dull its sharpness.
- Hold the syringe upside down and check for trapped air. If you see an air bubble, flick the side of the syringe. You may need to flick it several times, until all air has risen to the top. Then push the plunger a little, just enough to push out the air.
- Pinch the fat (to make sure you’re only penetrating subcutaneous tissue). Then thrust the needle in, as if you’re throwing a dart. You’ll normally do it at a 90° angle. If you have too little fat under your skin, use 45°. Inject slowly.
- When you give a B12 injection, it’s important to rotate between the sites if you want to keep your skin healthy. Repeated shots in the same spot can cause scarring or hardening of fatty tissue, which may interfere with absorption. Keep injection sites 1″ (2.5cm) apart from each other. And don’t inject to any swollen or burnt spot.
How to Inject Vitamin B12 Intramuscular?
Do you insist on injecting IM? Then follow the same instructions, only instead of pinching your fat, hold the flesh firmly using your thumb and index finger and insert the needle in the center. See this page for the best B12 injection sites.
B12 Self-Injection Is Easy
Now that you know how to administer B12 injections by yourself, a new world has opened up to you. You no longer have to rely on doctors (who won’t give enough shots), or private clinics (who’ll charge up to $250 a shot). Instead, you can buy injectable B12 and do-it-yourself. Self-administered B12 injections are safe, easy, and affordable.
Still not sure how to give yourself a B12 shot at home?
Contact us and we’ll help.