The Truth About Your Diabetes Gear
Type 1 diabetics love to make jokes about their lancet change.. Some diabetics change it with each prick, some once a day, some once a week and others once every three months. To be completely honest I often loose track of when the last time I changed mine was. But all jokes aside, how often should we really be changing our lancet to stay in the safe zone?
Lancet manufacturing companies recommend to change the lancet with each use. But of course they will say that, they want us to consume more so we have to reorder sooner and fill their pockets. They state it is so that the fingerpick is not painful and to keep us safe from infections. But, our diabetes technology has evolved greatly since the recommendation of changing the lancet with each prick.
Although lancets do get more dull when reused, the difference between a new and old lancet is not that apparent to the diabetic because it’s a quick finger prick with not much blood withdrawn. Although it is a good idea to change it about once a day, many diabetics do not find an issue with changing it once every 1-2 weeks. Every diabetic is different, it just depends on how much the prick bothers you! As long as no one else is using your pricker, there is no need to change it each and every time. This way, you can cut down on consumption.
And remember to use The Spike App to remind you of your insulin injections and facilitate your diabetes management!
Notes For Buying Online
When browsing for glucose monitors online, youll notice that some versions, such as the Rite Aid TrueMetrix, are available for purchase over the counter, while CGMs, such as the FreeStyle Libre or Dexcom G6, are not.
This is because youll need a doctors prescription to get a CGM system. However, you dont need a prescription for the basic fingerstick meters weve included on our list. With a prescription, you may be able to buy a CGM from a medical supply store online.
If you do decide to purchase a glucose monitor or meter online, be sure you know the total costs up front, including any test strips, extra sensors, lancets, and accessories that may be sold separately. You might also consider setting up these accessories on an auto-ship basis so you dont run out.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Assisted Blood Glucose Monitoring And Insulin Administration
The following FAQs summarize inquiries from healthcare personnel received by CDC regarding best practices for performance of assisted blood glucose monitoring and insulin administration, including questions related to cleaning, disinfection, and storage of blood glucose monitoring equipment.
These FAQs are not intended as a comprehensive resource for all issues related to blood glucose monitoring and insulin administration, and additional considerations may be necessary for certain clinical situations or settings. View more detailed information related to assisted blood glucose monitoring and insulin administration.Visit CDCs Injection Safety website for additional information regarding injection safety and CDCs Sharps Safety websiteinformation related to sharps safety and safe disposal of sharps in healthcare settings.
Healthcare personnel are also encouraged to consult guidance provided by the Food and Drug Administration as well as the manufacturers of the devices in use at their facilities.
What is the difference between self-monitoring of blood glucose and assisted monitoring of blood glucose ?
Individuals who perform blood glucose monitoring either for themselves or on others must be aware of basic safe practices to protect against infection transmission. These include the following infection control requirements:
How Often Do You Replace Your Glucose Meter
How often do you replace your glucose meter?
- When insurance changes my coverage
When new meters come out with improved accuracy or desired features.
I only buy a new one when my insurance company changes which strips they will cover each year. Many times I buy the first and my doctor gives me a backup, as they get many to give out to patients. I currently have 4 hanging around the house and that is after I took many to an electronic waste collection event last year.
I usually upgrade/replace my meter at the same time I upgrade my pump, because they usually send them together since the meter sends the number to the pump. Before they did that, I usually didnt get a new meter until my previous one stopped working or got damaged.
When new meters come out with improved accuracy or desired features.
About five years after that, when I finally hear about the new features.
When the insurance starts covering different test strips. I was mad I had to give up my Freestyle Lite meter.
I have changed meters pretty frequently the past few years as I find good deals on strips, but I used to only change it when my Dr.s office gave me a new one or an offer for a new one came with something from various diabetes companies.
I had my One Touch Ultra Smart meter for 8 years before the price of the strips completely drove me away. Im using a Contour Next One right now and a One Drop chrome before that.
What Are The Advantages Of Using Cgm To Manage Diabetes
Using a CGM device can make it easier to manage Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. Some people use CGM for a week to understand their blood sugar patterns. Most use CGM long-term.
A CGM device can:
- Show you a bigger picture of how diabetes affects you: CGM measures glucose levels every few minutes. That data shows a more complete picture of how your blood sugar levels change over time. This information can help you and your provider better understand how things like food, activity, stress and illness impact your blood sugar levels.
- Lead to more personalized care: CGM doesnt give the whole story of all the ways diabetes affects you. It tells you when glucose goes up or down, not why. But your provider can download CGM data from your device and review it for patterns and trends. They can then personalize your care based on what they learn.
- Alert you to highs and lows: Most CGM devices send an alert when your glucose levels rise or fall a certain amount. With this information, you can make changes quickly. You may be able to treat or prevent highs or lows before they turn into a big problem.
- Reduce how many fingerstick checks you need to do: CGM significantly reduces how many fingerstick tests youll need to do each day.
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How Often Should I Change Lancets
Although it is a good idea to change it about once a day, many diabetics do not find an issue with changing it once every 1-2 weeks. Every diabetic is different, it just depends on how much the prick bothers you! As long as no one else is using your pricker, there is no need to change it each and every time.
Why Would You Replace Your Monitor
Many people living with diabetes learn to trust their blood glucose meter and use it for a very long time. Based on the fact that a monitor cannot be used in Canada without Health Canada approval, you should feel very comfortable that all blood glucose meters that are commercially available here are accurate. Obviously, it should be replaced if it is determined to be inaccurate, but also if there is an update in the standard for accuracy as set by Health Canada. Newer meters will be held to that requirement, but older meters may not meet that standard.
There is no guideline regarding how often you should replace your meter, but meters have been evolving to help you with self-management, and now include features such as colour-coding high and low results, syncing to your phone or helping identify blood sugar patterns. Check with your healthcare team to determine if you are using the best monitor for your needs.
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How Often Do I Need To Replace My Glucose Meter
I see I can get a free one every six months, but is that necessary? Where do you dispose of all the old meters? Also, do I need to get the control solution that tests the meter?
My ins allows for a replacement every 2 years, As long as you’re confident with the readings, I don’t see the need to replace every 6 mos. Some have a limited date range, so that might affect your decision.
The sender units you attached to your arm are very expensive, otherwise it seems a good idea. “Not available on the NHS”. Realise you would be paying out a lot of money just to avoid a little prick a few times a day. .
that is something I was just wondering also.
I read that the latest tech has a model where you don’t need to prick your finger..!!
My meter just reads the blood sugar level, time and date. In the past I’ve had a meter that let you add notes to your readings like “before a meal” or “after a meal”. I’m sure as technology improves there are many more meters out there that can do different things. I once saw a talking meter that told your blood sugar level. I would look at the different meters or the Libre System where you scan the device on your arm.
Get A Good First Drop For Accurate Blood Glucose Results
Diabetes educator Deb Bjorsness, R.D., CDE, suggests taking these steps to get a good drop of blood with the least pain and most accurate results:
1. Wash.“It’s amazing how many people don’t wash their hands prior to doing a check,” Bjorsness says. “Say you eat an apple. You don’t realize you have apple residue on your fingers. If you don’t clean your hands, you could have a blood sugar result that is artificially high. If you use insulin, that can be a real issue.” Bjorsness recommends just using soap and warm water. “Save the alcohol pads for when you are out and about and don’t have access to a sink,” she says.
2. Shake. Give your hands three to five shakes below your heart to get the blood down to the fingertips. For those of you who remember shaking down a mercury thermometer, that’s the snap you want.
3. Stick. Set your lancet to the right depth for you. “You need a depth on the device to get just enough blood without having to squeeze the life out of your finger. Don’t go deeper than you need,” Bjorness says. For less pain, use the sides of your fingers, which have fewer nerve endings than the pads. Or try an alternate lancing site, such as the fleshy parts of your palm or forearm.
4. Milk. Gently milk the finger down. Don’t squeeze hard or you might change the composition of the blood, affecting the result.
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Keep Track Of And Learn From Your Blood Glucose Checks
You should keep a record of your glucose checks in the format you prefer. Perhaps you like writing your results into a record book. Or you want to go high-tech and use one of the many mobile or online apps that are available. Find what works best for you.
Keeping track of your results is important because they enable you and your provider to look back and observe trends and patterns in your numbers. With this information, you and your provider can make changes in and improve your management as needed. Don’t wait for your provider to download your meter at each visit. Keep track of your results, observe them, and be ready to discuss them with your provider at each visit.
Make use of any data you collect:
* Circle, highlight, or make note in some way of the numbers that are outside your target range.
* Three glucose levels from the same time of day that are out of range are a pattern. If you don’t know what to do about the pattern, call your health care provider.
* If you use a logbook to record your results and run out of room, go to the meter manufacturer’s website. Some have log sheets you can print.
Are Continuous Glucose Monitoring Devices Easy To Use
CGM devices are complex little machines. They do require some upfront time to understand their technical aspects.
For example, you will need to learn how to:
- Insert the sensor properly.
- Transfer data to a computer or your phone.
- Respond to and make changes to your care plan based on the collected data.
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How Do You Know If Your Glucose Meter Is Accurate
All content on this website is for educational purposes only and does not replace the guidance of your healthcare practitioner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.
Checking your blood sugar levels routinely with a blood glucose meter is one of the most crucial aspects of managing diabetes. Its the easiest way to detect and monitor trends in glucose levels, and it gives you and your physician vital information to help adjust your treatment plan and diet recommendations. To perform this valuable function, its important that your glucose meter displays accurate results. But how do you know if your glucose meter is accurate?
When Should You Test Your Blood Sugar
Blood sugar testing is important for controlling type 2 diabetes. Find out what goes into determining the best testing schedule for you.
Blood sugar testing is a fundamental part of treating type 2 diabetes. By obtaining regular blood sugar readings, people with diabetes can, among other things, help their doctor make more informed decisions regarding the type and dosage of medication they need. Blood sugar testing also can help you see what foods, events, and activities trigger highs and lows in your blood sugar levels.
So how often should you test your blood sugar? The answer depends mostly on the status of your health and the demands of your daily life.
People with type 2 diabetes should take a blood sugar reading at least once a day. Some may need to test as frequently as seven times a day. Whether you need to or are able to perform more frequent testing depends on a number of factors:
You should talk with your doctor about these factors to devise the right blood glucose monitoring schedule for you.
Creating a Blood Sugar Testing Schedule
In general, type 2 diabetes patients should schedule blood sugar testing to coincide with specific daily events. That makes it easier to remember when to test. Regular testing times include:
- Before all three meals
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Where Can I Buy Diabetes Supplies
You can purchase blood glucose meters, test strips, lancets, and other diabetes supplies at your local pharmacy or at online pharmacies. But it’s important to shop for bargains, just like you would for any other purchase. By looking for sales on diabetes products, you can find the best prices and save money. As an example, generic diabetes drugs can cut the cost of diabetes care. That’s because retail prices for generics are generally lower than you’d pay for the name-brand products.
A glucose meter can vary in price depending on the features and brand you select. But you should be able to buy one for $40 to $60. Diabetes test strips can cost around $100 a month. Test strips are pricey, but you must have them to avoid problems. Checking only once or twice a day can save money on test strips. But first discuss less frequent sugar checks with your doctor or diabetes educator.
As you select a blood glucose meter, test strips, and other insulin supplies such as insulin syringes, keep in mind that there is no cure for diabetes at this time. You will need to have diabetes supplies every day, whether you are in town, away for the weekend, or traveling globally. You will have to make management of diabetes part of your daily lifestyle to stay well and avoid life-threatening diabetes complications.
The Most Accurate Meters
Because accuracy is so important, we look at meters that have proven accuracy in industry data. These blood glucose meters have been tested against the industry standards via the surveillance program. Based on those results, here is our list of the most accurate meters available on the market today.
- The Diabetes Technology Society Surveillance Program results showed that 95% of the Contour Next results were within the required 15% window.
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How Long Does Control Solution Last
Most control solution for glucose meters lasts 90 days from the date that the bottle is first opened. However, some manufacturers make their control solution to last longer. It is always best to use control solution before the expiration date on the box, and to discard the bottle after it has been opened for the time period specified by the manufacturer.
After each use, be sure to re-cap the control solution bottle, forming a tight seal. Temperature and humidity can affect the control solution and potentially alter the result of a control solution test. Therefore, check the storage conditions on the bottle to determine the best place to store it.
Are There Tips To Help Me Be A Smart Shopper For Diabetes Supplies
- Before you buy diabetes supplies, check for the best prices.
- Buy diabetes products from a highly reputable company and/or pharmacy.
- Always check the dates on diabetes drugs. Return any medication that are outdated or that may expire soon.
- Return glucose meters that are defective. You never know if a meter has been dropped or damaged during shipping, and you don’t want to risk your life on a faulty glucose meter.
- If test strips have been opened, return them for a new package that is unopened to ensure integrity.
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