Glucose monitors are small devices that measure your blood sugar levels throughout the day. This information allows you to manage diabetes effectively so that you can avoid dangerous highs and lows. If you suffer from diabetes, then you already understand the importance of monitoring your blood sugar levels. But did you know that you could also use a glucose monitor to track other health issues such as cholesterol and triglycerides?
A glucose monitor is a simple device that measures your blood sugar levels. It works by measuring the amount of glucose in your bloodstream. Your doctor may recommend a particular brand of glucose monitor based on your specific needs. Some monitors are equipped with alarms that alert you when your blood sugar levels reach certain thresholds. Others are able to send alerts via text message or email.
Read our buyers guide to learn more about glucose monitors and how they can benefit your overall health.
If you have diabetes, then you probably already know that keeping track of your blood sugar levels is essential to managing your disease. This includes checking your blood sugar regularly throughout the day, as well as taking action if your readings start to rise too high or fall too low. If you're not familiar with what a blood sugar reading is, here's everything you need to know about testing your blood sugar level.
Glucose levels in the blood help control how much insulin your pancreas produces. If your blood sugar level gets too high, your body will release more insulin into your bloodstream. This causes your cells to absorb the extra glucose and convert it into energy for your body to use. If your blood sugar drops below normal, your body stops producing enough insulin. Your liver stores any excess glucose as glycogen. Glycogen is stored in your muscles and liver until needed. The next time your body needs energy, your liver breaks down this stored glycogen and converts it into glucose.
Glucose monitors are useful tools for diabetics. Glucose levels can fluctuate during the day. Sometimes this happens after meals and sometimes it doesn't happen until several hours later. When this occurs, it's called postprandial hyperglycemia.
When you have diabetes, your pancreas produces insulin. Insulin allows your cells to absorb sugar from the bloodstream. But sometimes, your body can't produce enough insulin. This causes your blood sugar level to rise above normal. High blood sugar levels can cause serious problems such as blurred vision, headaches, fatigue, and confusion. To prevent these symptoms, you must know your blood sugar level. This requires frequent testing.
There are two types of glucose monitors. One type measures only one thing - blood sugar. The other type measures everything else in your blood. Both types use a tiny needle to draw blood. Then, a sensor uses light to detect the amount of sugar in the blood sample. Some models require a finger prick while others use a drop of blood taken from the earlobe.
The most common model is the Accu-Chek Aviva meter. It has been around since 1996. It comes in three sizes - 2, 4, and 6 inches long. The smaller size is perfect for travel. It attaches easily to your belt loop or purse strap. The larger version is best for home use. It includes a lancet device which makes the test faster and simpler. The lancet device automatically pricks the skin and collects the blood sample. The result appears almost immediately on the display screen.
Another popular model is the FreeStyle Lite. It looks similar to the Accu-Chek Aviva but it does not include the lancing feature. Instead, it uses a disposable strip. After inserting the strip into the machine, press a button to start the test. Results appear within minutes. The strips are inexpensive and last for months.
Other models include the Contour Next Link, the Freestyle Optium Neo, and the iPro2. Each offers its own advantages. For instance, the Contour Next Link is designed for use in hospital settings. It provides instant results and alerts doctors when readings exceed preset limits. The iPro2 is compact and lightweight. It works with any smartphone and is ideal for traveling. The Freestyle Optium Neo is the smallest and easiest to operate. It also gives accurate results quickly. All of these meters are FDA approved and CE marked. They are also compatible with most smartphones.
Glucose monitors are used by diabetics to measure their blood sugar levels. They provide a convenient way to keep track of how many carbohydrates they eat and how much insulin they take. Glucose monitors come in several different types including those that use strips, lancets, test kits, and meters. Each type offers advantages and disadvantages. Let's examine them so you can decide which one best suits your needs.
A strip glucose monitor measures blood sugar levels by measuring the amount of glucose in your blood through a small sample of your finger prick. This method is quick and easy. You simply place a drop of blood on a special paper strip, wait for the results, then read the results displayed on the monitor. Strip glucose monitors are available in various sizes ranging from 1 to 12 inches. These monitors usually have a display screen that shows the current level of glucose along with other vital statistics such as date/time, battery life, and calibration status.
Once the blood is drawn, the monitor analyzes it within seconds. Because this method takes a larger volume of blood, it provides a higher accuracy reading. Lancets are typically reusable and are available in single-use disposable models. Although they are slightly more expensive than strip glucose monitors, they offer better accuracy and convenience.
These monitors work similarly to lancets except that they do not require any additional steps beyond inserting the meter into the skin. Test kits are often packaged with a disposable lancing device and a blood collection tube. They are designed to be used multiple times until the end of the testing period. Test kits are generally more accurate than strip glucose monitors because they measure actual blood glucose levels rather than just detecting whether or not glucose is present.
Easy to use. When you're using a glucose monitor, you want something that makes it easy to take readings and stay focused on your diet. Look for monitors that feature simple menus and screens that are intuitively laid out so you can quickly learn how to use them.
Accurate results. The accuracy of a glucose monitor is important. Look for monitors that give accurate results. This means they must measure glucose levels within 5% of actual values. Monitors that do this are more reliable than those that only give results within 10%.
Battery life. Battery life is another factor to consider when buying a glucose monitor. Some monitors have batteries that last longer than others. Make sure you know how many days of battery life each model has before you buy.
Display. Most models now have color displays that show trends over time. These trend lines can help you track changes in your blood sugar level. They can also alert you if your blood sugar goes above or below normal ranges.
Portability. Many monitors are small enough to fit into a pocket or purse. Others are large enough to sit on a nightstand next to your bed.
Cost. Price may play a role in your decision about which type of monitor to buy. But remember that price isn't everything. You'll also want to consider features such as ease of use, display quality, number of alerts, and battery life.
There are two main categories of glucose monitors. One is called “continuous” and the other is called “intermittent”. Both CGM and IGM use small sensors placed under the skin to measure your blood glucose levels.
Continuous Glucose Monitors. A continuous glucose monitor measures your blood glucose levels every few minutes. This allows you to see how your body reacts to food, exercise, stress, illness, etc. It also helps you avoid low blood sugars. Continuous glucose monitors are useful for diabetics who are insulin dependent. For example, if you know that you are going to be eating something sugary, you could set up your continuous glucose monitor ahead of time so that you can adjust your insulin dosage accordingly.
Intermittent Glucose Monitors. An intermittent glucose monitor checks your blood glucose levels periodically. This means that you don’t have to wear the device 24/7. This makes it convenient for those who travel frequently. It also works well for people who have busy schedules. People who use intermittent glucose monitors include athletes, pregnant women, and anyone else who wants to keep track of their blood glucose levels without having to constantly test themselves.
Both CGM and IGM are helpful tools for managing diabetes. However, each tool has its own advantages and disadvantages. Make sure you choose the right tool for your needs.
You should check your blood sugar at least three times per day. Checking more frequently than this will likely result in unnecessary trips to the doctor's office.
Glucose monitors are extremely accurate when they are working correctly. They have been shown to be 99% accurate.
Most glucose monitors require about five minutes to get their readings. If yours takes longer, try checking again later.
Many pharmacies sell glucose monitors. Look in the pharmacy section of your local newspaper for ads for glucose monitors.
All types of glucose monitors work equally well. Choose whichever one is most convenient for you.
Yes! Many people use glucose monitors to keep track of their blood sugar levels. These include pregnant women, those with diabetes, and athletes.
No. A glucose monitor requires a drop of blood to function. To ensure accuracy, you must prick your finger first.
Not unless you accidentally poke yourself with the needle. Most glucose monitors contain a safety feature that automatically stops the needle once it has penetrated the skin.
Some glucose monitors allow you to draw a sample of blood through a lancet instead of pricking your finger. Ask your pharmacist what type of monitor he/she recommends.
Yes. There are two ways to collect a blood sample without pricking yourself. One way involves drawing a sample of blood through a lancet. The second method uses a capillary tube. Both methods are safe and easy.
If you're new to testing your blood sugar, you'll probably notice that your numbers seem too high or too low. When you first start testing, your numbers may fluctuate wildly. Over time, however, you'll learn to recognize patterns in your results. Your doctor will be able to tell whether your monitor is functioning correctly.
To clean your monitor, simply wipe it off with a damp cloth. Make sure to wash it thoroughly after each use.
Alcohol wipes aren't suitable for cleaning your monitor. Alcohol dries out the skin, making it less sensitive to the probe. Instead, use a soft, moistened tissue.
Rubbing alcohol isn't appropriate for cleaning your monitor either. Use a cotton swab soaked in water instead.