Evaluating blood glucose (sugar) is a crucial part of your diabetes care plan. Depending on your current condition, you might need to visit your doctor numerous times a year for formal testing. You might likewise need to go to your doctor for preventive screening, such as cholesterol checks and eye examinations. While staying in touch with your doctor is important for staying on top of your treatment strategy, you can and need to test your blood sugar on your own, as long as your health care group encourages you to.
Self-monitoring your blood sugar might be essential to your treatment. Checking your very own levels allows you to learn your blood glucose and handle it no matter the time of day or where you are.
Discover how these tests work and speak to your doctor about the advantages of self-monitoring.
Who Should Use Diabetes Home Tests?
Your doctor will help you choose if you have to test your blood glucose at home. If you do, your doctor will help you figure out how frequently and what times of day you need to test. Your doctor will also inform you what your blood sugar level targets are. You may think about diabetes home tests if you have:
By tracking blood glucose, you can find issues in your current diabetes care. Inning accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), normal blood sugar ranges in between 70 and 140 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). Low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) is listed below 70 mg/dL, and high blood sugar level (hyperglycemia) is well above the normal variety. By maintaining glucose at a normal variety, you may assist prevent diabetes complications such as:
Also read: Diabetes Effects on Your Body’s Systems
Performing the Test
Blood glucose tests come in varying types, but they all have the very same purpose: to tell you what your blood glucose level is at that moment. The majority of home tests come with:
- a lancet (small needle)
- a lancing, or lancet, device (to hold the needle)
- test strips
- a glucose meter
- portable cases
- cords to download data (if required)
Start by cleaning your hands, then put the lancet into the lancet device so it is prepared to go. Prior to using the lancet, position a brand-new test strip into the meter. Prick your finger with the lancet in the protective lancing device. Next, carefully position the subsequent drop of blood onto the test strip and await the results. Outcomes should usually show up within seconds.
With some meters, you need to make certain the code on the strip matches the code on the meter. Likewise, make sure to inspect the date on the strips every once in a while to make sure they aren’t out of date. Lastly, most meters now have a way to use an alternative site for screening, such as your lower arm. Talk to your doctor to choose what is best for you.
Tips for Accurate Testing
The fingers generally offer the most precise results. Some tests permit you to puncture your thigh or arm, but you need to talk to your doctor prior to doing so.
The CDC advises two to 4 tests each day if you are on insulin. You might consider testing prior to and after meals to see how your diet affects blood sugar. It’s especially crucial to test after eating basic carbohydrates or sweet foods to make sure your glucose isn’t really too expensive. It’s also important to test whenever you make a modification to your treatment strategy or if you feel you’re getting ill.
For the most accurate screening, people must log the food they eat, and notification patterns in their blood glucose readings. Whether you consume a high or low carbohydrate meal, if your blood glucose reading is greater than normal later on, this suggests the body is having problem managing meals and reducing blood glucose.
A blood sugar chart is important for tracking your results. Whether you keep an eye on your readings on paper or electronically, having this information can help you recognize patterns and potential issues. You need to conserve your charts and take them to your next doctor’s go to. When writing down your outcomes, also be sure to log:
- the date and time of the test
- any medications you’re taking, in addition to the dose
- Whether it was before or after a meal
- foods you consumed (if after a meal, note the carbohydrate material of that meal)
- any workouts you did that day when you did them
Home Testing vs. Medical Testing
Self-monitoring your blood sugar is important in figuring out how your diabetes is doing every day. It’s unreasonable to assume that a couple of tests a year at the doctor’s office can offer an accurate portrayal of your condition because glucose levels vary throughout the day. However, this doesn’t imply that home tests need to change your regular preventive testing either.
In addition to self-monitoring at home, your doctor will likely advise an A1C test. It determines how your blood glucose has been averaging over the last 2 to 3 months. According to the American Association for Clinical Chemistry, A1C tests are ordered up to 4 times annually. Getting regular laboratory tests can also assist you identify how well you are managing your diabetes. They will likewise assist you and your healthcare group to choose how frequently to use your home test, in addition to what your target reading should be.
Know Your Numbers
Self-monitoring your blood sugar level is vital to keeping your health. If your readings are uncommonly low or high, call your doctor right now. The CDC advises looking for emergency situation medical attention if your readings are below 60 mg/dL or above 300 mg/dL.
Also read: How to Get Diabetes Testing Supplies