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How To Test Your Blood Sugar

Know Your Blood Sugar Numbers: Use Them To Manage Your Diabetes

Know Your Blood Sugar Numbers: Use Them To Manage Your Diabetes

Checking your blood sugar, also called blood glucose, is an important part of diabetes care. This tip sheet tells you: why it helps you to know your blood sugar numbers how to check your blood sugar levels what are target blood sugar levels what to do if your levels are too low or too high how to pay for these tests Why do I need to know my blood sugar numbers? Your blood sugar numbers show how well your diabetes is managed. And managing your diabetes means that you have less chance of having serious health problems, such as kidney disease and vision loss. As you check your blood sugar, you can see what makes your numbers go up and down. For example, you may see that when you are stressed or eat certain foods, your numbers go up. And, you may see that when you take your medicine and are active, your numbers go down. This information lets you know what is working for you and what needs to change. How is blood sugar measured? There are two ways to measure blood sugar. Blood sugar checks that you do yourself. These tell you what your blood sugar level is at the time you test. The A1C (A-one-C) is a test done in a lab or at your provider’s office. This test tells you your average blood sugar level over the past 2 to 3 months. How do I check my blood sugar? You use a blood glucose meter to check your blood sugar. This device uses a small drop of blood from your finger to measure your blood sugar level. You can get the meter and supplies in a drug store or by mail. Read the directions that come with your meter to learn how to check your blood sugar. Your health care team also can show you how to use your meter. Write the date, time, and result of the test in your blood sugar record. Take your blood sugar record and meter to each visit and talk about your results with your h Continue reading >>

Blood Glucose Monitoring

Blood Glucose Monitoring

One of the main aims of diabetes treatment is to keep blood glucose levels within a specified target range. The key is balancing your food with your activity, lifestyle and diabetes medicines. Blood glucose monitoring can help you understand the link between blood glucose, food, exercise and insulin. Over time your readings will provide you and your health professionals with the information required to determine the best management strategy for your diabetes. Maintaining good blood glucose control is your best defence to reduce the chances of developing complications from diabetes. Self-blood glucose monitoring allows you to check your blood glucose levels as often as you need to or as recommended by your doctor or Credentialled Diabetes Educator. To test blood glucose levels, you need: A blood glucose meter A lancet device with lancets Test strips. Blood glucose meters are usually sold as kits giving you all the equipment you need to start. There are many different types, offering different features and at different prices to meet individual needs. Most of these are available from Diabetes Australia in your state or territory, pharmacies and some diabetes centres. Your doctor or Credentialled Diabetes Educator can help you choose the meter that’s best for you, and your Credentialled Diabetes Educator or pharmacist can show you how to use your meter to get accurate results. To test your blood glucose levels, you prick your finger with the lancet and add a small drop of blood onto a testing strip. This strip is then inserted into the meter, which reads the strip and displays a number – your blood glucose level. When and how often you should test your blood glucose levels varies depending on each individual, the type of diabetes and the tablets and/or insulin being us Continue reading >>

A Diabetes Test You Can Do Yourself

A Diabetes Test You Can Do Yourself

Are you urinating more often, feeling very thirsty, hungry, or tired? Maybe you’re losing weight. You may have type 2 diabetes. To find out, you can make an appointment with your doctor and have your blood tested for the condition. Or you can go to the drug store, buy a blood glucose meter, and give yourself a diabetes test. An estimated 40 percent of adults with type 2 diabetes don’t know they have it, which means they aren’t getting treatment that could protect them from very serious health problems down the road, such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, and kidney failure. The best option is to go to a doctor if you’re having symptoms of diabetes. But if you’re reluctant to do that, for whatever reason, the next best thing is to buy an over-the-counter diabetes test kit. "If you have a family history of diabetes, are obese, or have high blood pressure, you should test yourself for diabetes, if your doctor hasn’t already done so," says Marvin M. Lipman, M.D., Consumer Reports' chief medical adviser. "By being a proactive person, you might save yourself a lot of grief in the future.” Blood glucose meters can be purchased without a prescription. Models in our Ratings of more than two dozen devices cost $10 to $75. They usually come with 10 lancets, but you might have to buy a pack of test strips separately, which can cost $18 and up; check the package to see what it includes. If the meter doesn’t come with strips, make sure you buy a pack made for that model or you’ll get inaccurate results. Most models come with batteries. Here’s what you need to do next: Fast overnight. Don’t have anything to eat or drink (except water) for at least 8 hours, then test yourself first thing in the morning, before breakfast. Follow directions. Read the manual to ma 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 >>

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 >>

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 >>

Am I Diabetic? How To Test Your Blood Sugar To Find Out

Am I Diabetic? How To Test Your Blood Sugar To Find Out

If you have not been diagnosed with diabetes but suspect you might have something wrong with your blood sugar, there is a simple way to find out. What you need to do is to test your blood sugar after you have eaten a meal that contains about sixty grams of carbohydrates. You can ask your doctor to test your blood sugar in the office if you have an appointment that takes place an hour or two after you've eaten or, if this isn't an option, you can use an inexpensive blood sugar meter to test your post-meal blood sugar yourself at home. You do not need a prescription to buy the meter or strips. One advantage of testing yourself at home is that with self-testing you do not run the risk of having a "diabetes" diagnosis written into your medical records which might make it impossible for you to buy health or life insurance. To run a post-meal blood sugar test do following: Borrow a family member's meter or buy an inexpensive meter and strips at the drug store or Walmart. The Walmart Relion meter store brand meters sold at pharamcies like CVS, Walgreens, etc are usually the least expensive. Some meters come with 10 free strips. Check to see if the meter you have bought includes strips. If it doesn't, buy the smallest package size available. Strips do not keep for very long once opened, so don't buy more than you need for a couple tests. Familiarize yourself with the instructions that came with your meter so that you know how to run a blood test. Practice a few times before you run your official test. Each meter is different. Be sure you understand how yours works. The first thing in the morning after you wake up but before you have eaten anything, test your blood sugar. Write down the result. This is your "fasting blood sugar." Now eat something containing at 60 - 70 grams of Continue reading >>

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

How To Check Your Blood Sugar

Managing blood sugar levels is critical for those who suffer from diabetes. It is important to know how to properly monitor these levels. Several steps must be taken correctly to ensure results are accurate. Gather a glucose test kit. A common test kit includes: Ensure the meter has a working battery installed or replace with new battery through the back of meter if necessary. If it is the first time using the meter, it may have to be set up. Steps to set up the meter include adjusting the date, year, clock, and time. Alarms can be set, if desired, as reminders for glucose checks. Personal high and low settings can be entered that will alarm and display if the readings are out of individual's preferred range. Thoroughly wash hands with soap and warm water for 20-30 seconds. Rinse and dry completely before continuing. Washing hands before this task will prevent infection. If the hands are not properly washed, there is a chance the meter could show falsely elevated results. Take a single, clean test strip out of vial. Insert test strip into the allotted slot at the top of the meter. Make sure the strip is face up and the sample tip is sticking out of the meter. If the test strip is inserted into the meter incorrectly, the meter will not turn on. The meter will automatically turn on and beep after the test strip is inserted correctly. When the meter is ready for a sample, a flashing symbol will appear on the screen. Take a single, unused lancet from supply. Remove cover of lancing device by twisting. Insert new lancet into lancing device. Carefully remove protective cap from lancet to expose needle by twisting top slightly. Ensure not to poke yourself with tip of needle. Replace cover onto lancing device. The lancing device has several different depth settings which can 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 >>

How To Test Blood Sugar | Accu-chek

How To Test Blood Sugar | Accu-chek

The steps are similar for many meters, and generally look like this: Wash and dry your handsusing 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 spotdon'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. 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. 1Joslin Diabetes Center. Tips for more pain-free blood glucose monitoring. Available at: . Accessed March 11, 2016. 2Talk with your healthcare professional before deciding if alternate site testing is right for you. Continue reading >>

Home Blood Glucose Test: How To Test For Diabetes At Home

Home Blood Glucose Test: How To Test For Diabetes At Home

Home blood glucose testing is a safe and affordable way to detect diabetes before it becomes a health issue. Diabetes, especially in the early stages, does not always cause symptoms. Almost half of people with the disease don't know they have it. For people already diagnosed with diabetes, a simple diabetes home test is vital in the management of blood sugar levels. It could even be lifesaving. How to test for diabetes at home Home blood glucose monitoring is designed to offer a picture of how the body is processing glucose. A doctor might recommend testing at three different times, and often over the course of several days: Morning fasting reading: This provides information about blood glucose levels before eating or drinking anything. Morning blood glucose readings give a baseline number that offers clues about how the body processes glucose during the day. Before a meal: Blood glucose before a meal tends to be low, so high blood glucose readings suggest difficulties managing blood sugar. After a meal: Post meal testing gives a good idea about how your body reacts to food, and if sugar is able to efficiently get into the cells for use. Blood glucose readings after a meal can help diagnose gestational diabetes, which happens during pregnancy. Most doctors recommend testing about 2 hours after a meal. For the most accurate testing, people should log the food they eat, and notice trends in their blood glucose readings. Whether you consume a high or low carbohydrate meal, if your blood sugar reading is higher than normal afterwards, this suggests the body is having difficulty managing meals and lowering blood glucose. After consulting a doctor about the right testing schedule and frequency, people should take the following steps: Read the manual for the blood glucose moni Continue reading >>

How And When To Test Your Blood Sugar With Diabetes

How And When To Test Your Blood Sugar With Diabetes

Most people with diabetes need to check their blood sugar (glucose) levels regularly. The results help you and your doctor manage those levels, which helps you avoid diabetes complications. There are several ways to test your blood sugar: From Your Fingertip: You prick your finger with a small, sharp needle (called a lancet) and put a drop of blood on a test strip. Then you put the test strip into a meter that shows your blood sugar level. You get results in less than 15 seconds and can store this information for future use. Some meters can tell you your average blood sugar level over a period of time and show you charts and graphs of your past test results. You can get blood sugar meters and strips at your local pharmacy. Meters That Test Other Sites: Newer meters let you test sites other than your fingertip, such as your upper arm, forearm, base of the thumb, and thigh. You may get different results than from your fingertip. Blood sugar levels in the fingertips show changes more quickly than those in other testing sites. This is especially true when your blood sugar is rapidly changing, like after a meal or after exercise. If you are checking your sugar when you have symptoms of hypoglycemia, you should use your fingertip if possible, because these readings will be more accurate. Continuous Glucose Monitoring System: These devices, also called interstitial glucose measuring devices, are combined with insulin pumps. They are similar to finger-stick glucose results and can show patterns and trends in your results over time. You may need to check your blood sugar several times a day, such as before meals or exercise, at bedtime, before driving, and when you think your blood sugar levels are low. Everyone is different, so ask your doctor when and how often you should chec Continue reading >>

7 Blood Sugar Testing Mistakes To Avoid

7 Blood Sugar Testing Mistakes To Avoid

1 / 8 Understand Diabetes Testing If you have diabetes, it's imperative that you learn to effectively self-test your blood sugar to keep your glucose levels in check. For example, results from a study of more than 5,000 people living with diabetes showed that even those people who don't take medication for diabetes have better blood sugar control if they test regularly. The study participants' risk of early kidney damage, strokes, and death from diabetes-related causes was also reduced by one-third. Of course, the accuracy of your results is tied to the accuracy of your checking — and to your understanding of what all the numbers mean. "The most important point to me is that people are learning something from checking their blood sugar," says Sacha Uelmen, RDN, CDE, director of nutrition for the American Diabetes Association. "Don't just look at those numbers, write them down, and move on. If you have diabetes, take an active role in your health." To get the most useful readings, learn these common blood sugar testing mistakes and how to avoid them. Continue reading >>

What Is A Normal Blood Sugar Level?

What Is A Normal Blood Sugar Level?

The aim of diabetes treatment is to bring blood sugar (“glucose”) as close to normal as possible. What is a normal blood sugar level? And how can you achieve normal blood sugar? First, what is the difference between “sugar” and “glucose”? Sugar is the general name for sweet carbohydrates that dissolve in water. “Carbohydrate” means a food made only of carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen. There are various different kinds of sugars. The one our body uses most is called “glucose.” Other sugars we eat, like fructose from fruit or lactose from milk, are converted into glucose in our bodies. Then we can use them for energy. Our bodies also break down starches, which are sugars stuck together, into glucose. When people talk about “blood sugar,” they mean “blood glucose.” The two terms mean the same thing. In the U.S., blood sugar is normally measured in milligrams of glucose per deciliter of blood (mg/dl). A milligram is very little, about 0.00018 of a teaspoon. A deciliter is about 3 1/3 ounces. In Canada and the United Kingdom, blood sugar is reported in millimoles/liter (mmol/L). You can convert Canadian or British glucose levels to American numbers if you multiply them by 18. This is useful to know if you’re reading comments or studies from England or Canada. If someone reports that their fasting blood glucose was 7, you can multiply that by 18 and get their U.S. glucose level of 126 mg/dl. What are normal glucose numbers? They vary throughout the day. (Click here for a blood sugar chart.) For someone without diabetes, a fasting blood sugar on awakening should be under 100 mg/dl. Before-meal normal sugars are 70–99 mg/dl. “Postprandial” sugars taken two hours after meals should be less than 140 mg/dl. Those are the normal numbers for someone w 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 >>

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