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How Do You Check Your Blood Sugar?

How To Test Your Blood Sugar

How To Test Your Blood Sugar

Expert Reviewed Four Methods:Setting Up Your GlucometerUsing a GlucometerCompleting Your Blood Sugar RoutineGetting Tested By Your DoctorCommunity Q&A If you were recently diagnosed with diabetes or have another blood glucose control issue, you will likely have to test your blood sugar on a routine basis. This may seem difficult to do at first. However, regularly checking your blood sugar can help you monitor how well your medications or treatments are working, and is an important part of a diabetic care routine.[1] Testing your blood sugar is an easy procedure at your doctor’s office, and can be done simply at home once you purchase a glucose meter and become comfortable with how to use it. Continue reading >>

Can You Guess Your Blood Sugar?

Can You Guess Your Blood Sugar?

Many people with diabetes have been writing to TheDiabetesCouncil inquiring to see if it is possible to accurately guess one’s blood sugar. That is, to guess the number value exactly, or closely enough to treat it accordingly, without a glucometer. As a Certified Diabetes Educator, I would highly advise against this practice. People with diabetes should validate the symptoms that they are having with a glucometer. Although they may be able to tell by their symptoms of weakness, sweating, and heart palpitations, that they are low, it is very unlikely that they will be able to guess the number value of their blood sugar. It is true that with marked hypoglycemic symptoms, and swift progression to confusion, they may not have time to check their blood sugar with a glucometer. They may go ahead and treat with 15 grams of carbohydrates and then check their blood sugar. This may seem to be the safest route to take, rather than waiting until they are unable to help themselves because of a low, and possibly needing assistance from another person. Are you a guesser? PWDs with very high blood sugars may definitely recognize the fatigue, extreme thirst, hunger, and extra trips to the bathroom of an onset signal. In my experience, high blood sugars in the 200-250 mg/dl range are much more difficult to pick up on, as many with Type 2 diabetes may walk around for years with blood sugars around 200-250 mg/dl and not recognize the symptoms. I seriously doubt that people with diabetes can accurately guess their blood sugars. I have never met a person with diabetes who questioned whether or not they could guess what their blood sugars are exactly. Everyone I have come into contact with verifies their suspicions of low or high blood sugars with a glucometer. I recommend the following art Continue reading >>

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

There are two primary ways to figure out your blood sugar: a blood glucose meter and a continuous glucose meter. Almost everyone with diabetes will be encouraged to get a blood glucose meter. Those with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes with hypoglycemia unawareness (where you can’t tell if you have low blood sugar) may use a continuous glucose meter. How to Check Your Blood Sugar on a Meter Checking your blood glucose requires three things: a blood glucose meter, a test strip, and a lancing device. Here are the typical steps: Wash your hands to ensure you have no sugary residue on them. You want to check your blood sugar, not the sugar content of the apple you had for a snack. Insert a test strip into the meter. Use the lancing device to get a drop of blood. Touch the end of the test strip to the drop of blood. It will magically “drink up” the drop of blood. See the result on your meter’s screen. Any blood glucose meter supports checking on your fingertips. Some meters support checking on alternate sites. If you think you have a low blood sugar, are about to drive, are feeling unwell, or during or after exercise–always check on your fingertips since blood sugar numbers when checking from your arm or another site may lag behind those using your finger. Alternate testing sites can lag up to 30 minutes behind. Here is a video from the Mayo Clinic demonstrating how to check your blood sugar: It helps to rotate your fingertip sites so areas on your fingers don’t get too sore. Changing your lancet regularly helps decrease pain when pricking your finger. Try pricking your finger off center. Pricking right in the middle of your finger or too much to the side generally hurts more. It helps to shake your hand at your side before checking to help coax the blood out. Continue reading >>

How To Test Your Blood Sugar Level With Diabetes

How To Test Your Blood Sugar Level With Diabetes

Being able to test blood glucose levels between routine doctor's or clinic visits is often an important part of managing diabetes. For type 1 diabetes, getting a blood glucose reading is important for working out an insulin dose, for example. For type 2 diabetes, getting a glucose reading is important, for example, in tracking how well managed the condition is and helping to prevent high and low blood sugar levels. Regular testing of your blood sugar can also help reduce the risk of long-term complications from diabetes. Ways to test your blood sugar levels with diabetes Traditional home blood glucose monitoring. The traditional method of testing your blood sugar is to prick your finger with a lancet - a very short, fine needle. You then put a drop of blood on a test strip and place the strip into a special measuring device known as a glucose meter. This then displays your blood sugar level. These meters vary in size, speed and cost. Many provide results in less than 15 seconds and can store this information for future use. They can also calculate an average blood glucose level over a period of time. Some also feature software kits that retrieve information from the meter and display graphs and charts of your past test results. Meters and test strips are available at your local pharmacy. Devices that test other parts of your body. Newer devices allow you to test in areas other than your fingertips, such as your upper arm, forearm, thigh, and the base of your thumb. However, this may result in different blood glucose levels from those obtained from your fingertips. Blood glucose levels in the fingertips show changes more quickly than those in other parts of the body. This is especially true when your blood glucose is rapidly changing, such as after a meal or after exerci Continue reading >>

When To Check Your Blood Sugar

When To Check Your Blood Sugar

Your diabetes treatment and self-management plan will determine how often and when to check your blood sugar levels. How Often to Test Check your blood sugar levels when you need information to make decisions. How you use the information from testing is more important than how often you test. Whatever you decide is the best testing schedule for you, be sure you have a plan for what to do with the information from your tests. Many people find it helpful to check their blood sugar when they first wake up in the morning and again before their evening meal or going to bed. Others test before or after each meal. Many people test before and after exercising. In general, most people test at least 1 time a day if they: Manage diabetes by diet and exercise only Take diabetes pills Take 1 to 2 insulin shots a day People test 4 to 6 times a day when they: Take more than 2 insulin shots a day Start to have very high or very low blood sugar readings Are pregnant Use an insulin pump Are under more stress than usual Are sick Have changed their routine When to Test Testing at different times of the day can give you different information about how your diabetes care plan is working. First thing in the morning, before eating or drinking anything. This will tell you whether you have enough insulin in your body to control blood sugar levels at night, while you're asleep. Before each meal. This will help you make decisions about how much medicine to take and how much food to eat. After meals and before bedtime. This can tell you if you're taking enough medicine to cover the food you eat during the day and whether you're making the right food choices. Before certain activities, such as driving or using any kind of machine. This will let you know if your blood sugar is in a normal range. If y Continue reading >>

How To Test Your Blood Sugar

How To Test Your Blood Sugar

To check your blood sugar level, gather your blood glucose meter, a test strip and your lancing device. Watch the video below or follow the steps outlined here. See how to prepare the meter and test strip, lance your finger and get a reading using the Accu-Chek® Aviva Plus system. The steps are similar for many meters, and generally look like this: Wash and dry your hands—using warm water may help the blood flow.1 Turn on the meter and prepare a test strip as outlined in your owner's booklet. Many Accu-Chek meters turn on automatically when a strip is inserted. Choose your spot—don't check from the same finger all the time. Using the side of the fingertip may be less painful than the pads.1 Prepare the lancing device according to the user guide provided, then lance your fingertip or other approved site to get a drop of blood.2 Touch and hold the test strip opening to the drop until it has absorbed enough blood to begin the test. View your test result and take the proper steps if your blood sugar is high or low, based on your healthcare professionals' recommendations. Discard the used lancet properly. Record the results in a logbook, hold them in the meter's memory or download to an app or computer so you can review and analyze them later. For meter-specific instructions on how to test your blood sugar levels, visit the Accu-Chek Support page for your meter. Continue reading >>

Monitoring Your Blood Sugar Level

Monitoring Your Blood Sugar Level

What tests can I use to check my blood sugar level? There are 2 blood tests that can help you manage your diabetes. One of these tests is called an A1C test, which reflects your blood sugar (or blood glucose) control over the past 2-3 months. Testing your A1C level every 3 months is the best way for you and your doctor to understand how well your blood sugar levels are controlled. Your A1C goal will be determined by your doctor, but it is generally less than 7%. The other test is called SMBG, or self-monitoring of blood glucose. Using a blood glucose monitor to do SMBG testing can help you improve control of your blood sugar levels. The results you get from an SMBG test can help you make appropriate adjustments to your medicine, diet and/or level of physical activity. Every person who has diabetes should have a blood glucose monitor (also called a home blood sugar meter, a glucometer, or a glucose meter) and know how to use it. Your doctor may prescribe a blood glucose monitor. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved meters that work without pricking your finger. But these meters cannot replace regular glucose meters. They are used to get additional readings between regular testing. What supplies do I need? You will need a glucose meter, alcohol pads, sterile finger lancets and sterile test strips. Check with your health insurance plan to see if they will pay for these supplies. How do I pick a glucose meter? Check with your health insurance plan to see if they will pay for your glucose meter. If so, your plan may only pay for a certain meter. If your insurance plan doesn’t pay for glucose meters, ask your doctor which meters he or she recommends. Shop around and compare costs. Consider what features are important to you. For example, some meters are Continue reading >>

Checking Your Blood Sugar

Checking Your Blood Sugar

If you have diabetes, a single drop of blood can speak volumes. When placed on a test strip and fed into a blood sugar meter, that little drop can tell you whether, at that moment, your sugar level is too high, too low, or just about right. You can also get an important glimpse into the future. If your blood sugar is too high for too long, you could be at risk for long-term complications such as blindness, heart disease, and amputations. By testing your blood sugar regularly, you can track the effectiveness of your medication, make informed decisions about meals and exercise, and head off problems such as high blood sugar or low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) before it's too late. Checking blood sugar is an easy process, but it's possible to go astray. If you skip tests, don't record the information properly, or misuse the meter, your sugar levels could still be a mystery. Your doctor or diabetes educator can help you avoid these traps. Be sure to ask plenty of questions, and don't stop until you feel ready to measure your sugar levels on your own. Different patients have different needs, but some basic tips apply to everyone. When should I check my blood sugar? Your diabetes educator or your doctor can help you set your schedule. According to the Joslin Diabetes Center, most patients on insulin have to check their blood sugar several times a day. You may also need to do daily monitoring if you are newly diagnosed with diabetes, if your blood sugar is not well-controlled, or if you're making major changes in your food intake or energy expenditure that could influence your blood sugar. If any of these applies to you, you may want to check your blood sugar once in the morning, an hour before each of the three major meals, and right before bedtime. Your doctor may also suggest Continue reading >>

How Often To Test Your Blood Glucose

How Often To Test Your Blood Glucose

Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when and how often to check. Checking your blood sugar, keeping a record of your results, and using your results to improve your management is an important part of having diabetes. But before you grab your meter and check your blood glucose level, ask: Why am I checking now? How will I use the information to make decisions in how I manage my diabetes? If you don't know, find out before you do a check. Our blood sugar guide answers your questions about when Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar Testing: Why, When And How

Blood Sugar Testing: Why, When And How

Blood sugar testing is an important part of diabetes care. Find out when to test your blood sugar level, how to use a testing meter, and more. If you have diabetes, self-testing your blood sugar (blood glucose) can be an important tool in managing your treatment plan and preventing long-term complications of diabetes. You can test your blood sugar at home with a portable electronic device (glucose meter) that measures sugar level in a small drop of your blood. Why test your blood sugar Blood sugar testing — or self-monitoring blood glucose — provides useful information for diabetes management. It can help you: Judge how well you're reaching overall treatment goals Understand how diet and exercise affect blood sugar levels Understand how other factors, such as illness or stress, affect blood sugar levels Monitor the effect of diabetes medications on blood sugar levels Identify blood sugar levels that are high or low When to test your blood sugar Your doctor will advise you on how often you should check your blood sugar level. In general, the frequency of testing depends on the type of diabetes you have and your treatment plan. Type 1 diabetes. Your doctor may recommend blood sugar testing four to eight times a day if you have type 1 diabetes. You may need to test before meals and snacks, before and after exercise, before bed, and occasionally during the night. You may also need to check your blood sugar level more often if you are ill, change your daily routine or begin a new medication. Type 2 diabetes. If you take insulin to manage type 2 diabetes, your doctor may recommend blood sugar testing two or more times a day, depending on the type and amount of insulin you need. Testing is usually recommended before meals, and sometimes before bedtime. If you manage type 2 Continue reading >>

Why You Should Test Your Blood Sugar – Even If You’re Not Diabetic!

Why You Should Test Your Blood Sugar – Even If You’re Not Diabetic!

I’m pretty excited about Robb Wolf’s new book, Wired to Eat, and have just released a podcast where he and I chat about lentils, blood sugar, and “why” (I’ll get to that later in the post, or you can listen to the show). Before I talk more about the book, I thought I’d give you a little context on why I’m such a huge advocate of it… (and if you’re not interested in my story, skip down to “The Basic Gist of the Book”) I’ve always had blood sugar control issues. I think it goes back to being an undiagnosed Celiac as a kid, and constantly being hungry. I mean, I was starving ALL THE TIME. I could have eaten a full Thanksgiving dinner at any point during the day, and then some. I was really underweight as a kid, but always had a little belly. I also had a host of other issues like low muscle tone, hyper mobile joints, reading and attention problems, and had such low blood pressure that I’d sometimes randomly pass out. My small town, egocentric pediatrician declared I had lactose intolerance, and so he told my mother to give me diluted soy formula instead of milk. My daily meals looked something like this: Frosted Flakes with soy milk and orange juice plus banana for breakfast, canned chicken noodle soup for lunch, and Hamburger Helper for dinner. Rarely did we have fresh vegetables or a “from scratch” meal. My mom worked, and thought that homemaking was not for “modern women,” so my kitchen was stocked with Hungry Man dinners (you know, the ones in the tin foil) and Ritz crackers, “cheese spread” and the occasional bag of frozen string beans. During my 20’s, I went nearly vegetarian in college. I loved my deep fried tofu, lentils, and deep bowls of soba noodles. I never fully made it to completely plant-based, purely because my body c Continue reading >>

All-in-one Smart Glucose Meter

All-in-one Smart Glucose Meter

The Dario All-In-One Smart Glucose Meter is specially designed to fit your lifestyle in the digital age. This sleek, complete glucose monitoring solution includes a simple-to-use glucose meter, a disposable test strip cartridge holding 25 test strips, and lancing device – and easily fits in your pocket. Using the technology and mobility of your smartphone, the Dario connects to your mobile device and automatically logs your blood glucose measurements, sharing your results with caregivers and doctors – no matter where you are on the globe. Why You’ll Love the Dario Smart Glucose Meter Connects directly to your Smartphone – no need for extra cables or adapters Rapid results – receive your blood glucose reading within 6 seconds Accurate – Dario accuracy meets ISO standards with only a small blood sample Pocket-Size Meter – easily fits into your purse or pocket, no need for a bulky pouch or case Battery free – the power comes from the SmartPhone. No need to carry extra batteries for your glucose meter Strip Cartridge Each strips cartridge holds 25 disposable strips. Reloading your strips is simple, just pull out the old cartridge and insert a new one. Glucose Meter The simple-to-use Dario Smart Glucose Meter automatically tracks your blood sugars with a tiny meter that plugs into your phone’s audio jack. Blood glucose readings are directly tracked, charted, and analyzed for you. Lancing Device The Dario All-In-One Smart Glucose Meter contains a lancing device for convenient blood glucose testing. Simply place your finger on the lancet end of the Dario, pull down on the lancet slider, and push the release button to use. Smart Mobile Device Integration The Dario Smart Glucose Meter is cleared for use with a variety of mobile devices. The glucose meter pops o Continue reading >>

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

Keeping track of how much sugar (glucose) is in your blood is an important part of self-care when you have diabetes. This is also called self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG). To make sure your glucose and insulin are in balance, check your blood sugar as instructed by your healthcare provider. You may need to check your blood glucose levels at certain times every day. Or you may need to check them only a few times a week. Using a blood glucose meter You can check your blood sugar at home, at work, and anywhere else. Your diabetes team will help you choose a blood glucose meter. A meter measures the amount of glucose in a tiny drop of blood. You’ll use a device called a lancet to draw a drop of blood. Put the strip in the meter first. Then touch the test strip to the drop of blood. The meter then gives you a number (reading) that tells you the level of your blood sugar. Aim for your target range Your blood sugar should be in your target range—not too high and not too low. A target range is where your blood sugar level is healthiest. Staying in this range as much as possible will help lower your risk for health problems (complications). Your diabetes team will help you figure out the best target range for you. That range depends on many things. They include your age, other health problems, how well your diabetes is controlled, and how long you have had diabetes. In general, target ranges are: Control of blood glucose (hemoglobin A1c or A1c): generally, 7.0% or less. You will usually have this test at the lab. Before a meal (preprandial glucose): Between 80 and 130 mg/dL. One to 2 hours after a meal (postprandial glucose): Less than 180 mg/dL. Track your readings Use a notebook, chart, or log book to keep track of your readings. Write down the date, time, and your b Continue reading >>

How To Test Your Blood Glucose

How To Test Your Blood Glucose

Tweet Testing your blood glucose with a blood glucose meter allows you manage your diabetes. Watch a video guide on how to test your blood glucose (sugar) levels. For people new to diabetes, this guide to testing your blood glucose levels should get you started. Testing your blood sugar levels helps you to make informed decisions about your diet, activity and, if self-adjusting insulin, dosing requirements. Bear in mind that not all blood glucose meters are the same, so you may need to slightly the modify the method here. What do I need to test my blood sugar? In order to test your blood sugar levels, you will need: a blood glucose meter a test strip and a lancing device Some blood glucose meters may come with test strips and/or lancing devices. If in doubt, ask your healthcare professional. How to test your blood glucose Prepare your kit ready for testing. This should include: your meter, a test strip to hand (it may be advisable to have a spare strip to hand too), the finger pricker (lancing device), cotton wool (optional) and a monitoring diary to record the results Ensure that the finger pricking device has been loaded with a new lancet. Wash and dry your hands - to ensure that the result is not influenced by any sugars that may be present on your fingers A fuller drop of blood will be obtained if your fingers are warm, so it’s worth warming your hands up if you can. Be careful not to overheat your fingers so as not to hurt yourself. Put a test strip into your meter Prick your finger with the lancing device at the sides of the finger as there are less nerve ending here than at the tips or the ‘pads’. Recommended finger: the World Health Organisation recommends the middle or ring fingers are used for blood glucose tests (second and third fingers). You may want Continue reading >>

Blood Glucose Monitoring: Tips To Monitor Your Blood Sugar Successfully

Blood Glucose Monitoring: Tips To Monitor Your Blood Sugar Successfully

Blood sugar testing is an essential part of managing and controlling diabetes. Knowing your blood sugar level quickly can help alert you to when your level has fallen or risen outside the target range. In some cases, this will help prevent an emergency situation. You’ll also be able to record and track your blood glucose readings over time. This will show you how exercise, food, and medicine affect your levels. Conveniently enough, testing your blood glucose level can be done just about anywhere and at any time. In as little as a minute or two, you can test your blood and have a reading using an at-home blood sugar meter or blood glucose monitor. Learn more: Choosing a glucose meter » Whether you test several times a day or only once, following a testing routine will help you prevent infection, return true results, and better monitor your blood sugar. Here’s a step-by-step routine you can follow: Wash your hands with warm, soapy water. Then dry them well with a clean towel. If you use an alcohol swab, be sure to let the area dry completely before testing. Prepare a clean lancet device by inserting a clean needle. This spring-loaded device that holds the needle is what you will use to prick the end of your finger. Remove one test strip from your bottle or box of strips. Be sure to close the bottle or box completely to avoid contaminating the other strips with dirt or moisture. All modern meters now have you insert the strip into the meter before you collect blood, so you can add the blood sample to the strip when it is in the meter. With some older meters, you put the blood on the strip first, and then put the strip in the meter. Stick the side of your fingertip with the lancet. Some blood sugar machines allow for testing from different sites on your body, such as t Continue reading >>

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