Collier Family Medical is now offering continuous glucose monitoring (CGM). Unlike blood glucose monitors, CGM don’t require finger pricking. While blood glucose monitoring devices measure the glucose in your blood, continuous glucose monitoring devices measure the glucose levels in the interstitial fluid. The interstitial fluid sits in between the cells of your body.
Instead of finger pricking, continuous glucose monitoring devices work with a sensor and a reader. With glucose monitoring devices like Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre, all you need to do is apply the sensor to your arm and then initiate a one-second painless scan. You will then receive your current glucose reading, your glucose level from anytime to eight hours ago, and the direction in which your glucose levels are heading now. The reader also stores 90 days of data. CGM give you an ongoing idea of where your glucose level is and where it’s headed.
They can predict a low blood sugar 20-30 minutes before it happens. Knowing whether your blood glucose levels are on the rise or getting too low can save you from having to take medication or suffering from fatigue and other health problems. You can also identify patterns and trends, such as times of the day when your glucose levels usually get high and times when they usually get low, making it easier to prepare and take action as needed.
Continuous glucose monitoring devices are very easy to use. While the sensor must be continuously worn, it can be worn under your clothes, and while you exercise, bathe, and swim. Unlike finger pricking, using a sensor won’t interrupt your day. You can take out the small reader, use it to scan and see your data at any time, without anyone noticing. It’s like checking your phone for notifications.
It’s ideal for anyone with a phobia of needles and blood, and perfect for children as well. Instead of painfully pricking your child’s finger with a sugar test machine several times a day, you can just put a sensor on him or her and take a reading. Knowing the trends of your child’s glucose levels will make it easier to plan meals for them as well.
There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Both types affect the way that the body regulates blood sugar. The body’s cells need glucose. Insulin helps glucose enter the cells. The bodies of people with Type 1 diabetes don’t produce insulin, whereas the bodies of people with Type 2 diabetes don’t respond to insulin as they should, and later do not make enough insulin.
Both types can lead to chronically high blood sugar levels, which if not managed with food, exercise and blood glucose monitoring, can lead to symptoms such as urinating frequently, feeling very hungry and thirsty, feeling fatigued, and having cuts or sores that don’t heal properly. People with both types of diabetes can also experience irritability, mood swings, and unintentional weight loss.
For both types of diabetes, blood glucose monitoring is an important way of managing your diabetes. You can test your blood sugar at home using a traditional blood sugar monitor or a continuous blood sugar monitor, like FreeStyle Libre. Blood glucose monitoring identifies whether blood glucose levels are high or low, monitors the effect of diabetes medication, and helps you understand how other factors such as illness or stress affect blood sugar levels.
How many times a day you should use your blood glucose monitor and when you should test depends on the type of diabetes you have, your medications, and your risk for having low blood glucose levels.
For Type 1 diabetes, it is recommended people use their blood sugar monitor to check every 4 hours at the least. If they are exercising or partaking in any activity that can fluctuate their blood pressure, they must check blood sugar levels more frequently. If you’re travelling, especially if you are driving, you should use your blood glucose monitor every 2 hours.
You should conduct blood glucose monitoring before breastfeeding and every hour if you are experiencing hypoglycemia episodes. Daily, you should use your blood sugar monitor before meals and snacks, before and after exercise, and before sleeping. If you’re ill, starting a new medication, or your daily routine has changed, you should use your blood sugar monitor even more often.
If you have Type 2 diabetes and take insulin to manage your diabetes, your doctor may prescribe using your blood glucose monitor several times a day. You should check before meals, 1-2 hours after a meal, at night before sleeping, and late at night/early in the morning if required. Although it’s inconvenient to check your glucose levels at 2 AM, checks are sometimes necessary to screen for hypoglycemia as it’s common to not feel the low blood sugar and sleep through a hypoglycemia event.
You should also use your blood glucose monitor during, and after exercise and before driving, and when blood glucose levels can be higher, such as after consuming alcohol or during an illness. If you are taking multiple daily insulin injections, testing is extremely important. If you manage Type 2 diabetes with diet and exercise alone, you may not need to test your blood glucose levels as often.
For both Type 1 and Type 2, testing your glucose levels will become easier if you have a continuous blood sugar monitor, as they allow you to check your glucose levels several times a day, as well as while eating, exercising, sleeping, showering, and swimming. Rather than prick yourself to test your glucose levels with a blood sugar monitor, you can simply take a painless scan and get your current glucose levels and more information with a continuous blood sugar monitor.
Call or text today to see how the program is available to you! 704-240-5260