The Technology That Changes Lives For People With Diabetes - And Why I Think It Should Be Available On The NHS
Most people assume the worst thing about living with type one diabetes is having to inject insulin four times a day. I'm not going to lie, that isn't fun. But for me, without doubt, the most frustrating aspect of daily life with a defective pancreas is testing my blood sugar.
Firing a tiny needle into my finger to draw blood multiple times a day doesn't just hurt - it's not the easiest thing to do quickly and discreetly in the midst of a busy life. This means that, although I know good blood sugar control is important for both my long and short-term health, I probably don't do it as often as I should.
When I was diagnosed, I was given a glucose meter and finger-pricker, prescribed lancets and testing strips and told to check my blood sugar before meals, before driving, before bed, when I think my blood sugar is too high, too low, when I'm ill, when I'm exercising...
On some days, this can mean testing ten times or more - each time, stabbing my finger, squeezing some blood onto a testing strip and then waiting for the meter to reveal my blood sugar level.
In the UK, this is currently the only method of blood glucose testing available free of charge on the NHS. But for those who can afford £1,200+ a year, there is a far easier way of doing it.
Flash monitoring is a new technology - a small sensor that you wear under your skin. It stores your blood glucose levels continuously and you can access your readings whenever you want by scanning the sensor with your glucose meter (or even your mobile phone).
While it doesn't entirely take away the need for finger-pricking, it minimis Continue reading