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How To Check Sugar In Blood At Home

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When And How Often To Check Levels

How to Test Your Blood Sugar At Home

How often you should test your childâs blood sugar levels each day and when depends on a number of things and can even change from day to day. In general, most kids with diabetes test their blood sugar levels before breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and at bedtime.

They may need to check more often when theyâre sick or if there are changes in their diabetes treatment or daily habits. They may also need to check more often if they use an insulin pump or have a management plan that aims for very close control of blood sugar levels. The diabetes health care team can advise you on how often and when to check.

Sometimes parents need to check their childâs blood sugar levels in the middle of the night. For example, kids having problems with hypoglycemia episodes may need middle-of-the-night tests. And those whoâve just been diagnosed with diabetes may need more frequent tests while they and their families are learning how insulin or other diabetes medicines affect blood sugar levels.

How To Get The Most Out Of Your Blood Glucose Readings

Keeping track of your blood sugar alerts you to changes that need to be addressed right away. It also helps you see, in real-time, how different thingslike certain types of food, exercise, and stressaffect your blood sugar for better or for worse. This information is valuable for helping you adjust your lifestyle to keep your levels in the target range and prevent common but serious complications from type 2 diabetes.

Can I Check My Own Blood Sugar

You can do blood sugar level check by doing a finger-prick test, by using a blood sugar monitor called a flash glucose monitor or with a continuous glucose monitor . You can do this several times a day helping you keep an eye on your levels as you go about your life and help you work out what to eat and how much medication to take. Find out your ideal target range.

Not everyone with diabetes needs to check their levels like this. Youll need to if you take certain diabetes medication. Always talk to your healthcare team if youre not sure whether thats you theyll give you advice on whether to check them yourself and how often.

And theres also something called an HbA1c, which is a blood test to measure your average blood sugar level over the last three months. Everyone with diabetes is entitled to this check.

High blood sugar levels increase your risk of developing serious complications. However you manage your diabetes, stay in the know about your blood sugar levels

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Dont Get Tricked While Treating

A big part of managing diabetes is maintaining stable blood sugar levels. While consuming sugary treats once in a while can be perfectly fine, over consumption can destabilise your blood sugar levels.

Finding a good balance to control overconsumption is the key. Its always best to feed your children some complex carbohydrates like fruits or whole grain snacks before going trick-or-treating, said Dr El-Refee.

This way, there will be less of an urge to consume the treats in one go, or when walking from door-to-door. Accompany toddlers while they are trick-or-treating to help avoid overconsumption. If you have a teenager or a slightly older child, have a direct conversation with them on why they need to monitor their own consumption levels.

Drink Water And Stay Hydrated

Home blood glucose tester 100 pieces Fully automatic blood sugar test ...

Drinking enough water could help you keep your blood sugar levels within healthy ranges.

In addition to preventing dehydration, it helps your kidneys flush out any excess sugar through urine.

One review of observational studies showed that those who drank more water had a lower risk of developing high blood sugar levels (

34 ).

You can do so at home using a portable blood glucose meter, which is known as a glucometer. You can discuss this option with your doctor.

Keeping track allows you to determine whether you need to adjust your meals or medications. It also helps you learn how your body reacts to certain foods .

Try measuring your levels regularly every day and keeping track of the numbers in a log. Also, it may be more helpful to track your blood sugar in pairs for example, before and after exercise or before and 2 hours after a meal.

This can show you whether you need to make small changes to a meal if it spikes your blood sugar, rather than avoiding your favorite meals altogether. Some adjustments include swapping a starchy side for non-starchy veggies or limiting them to a handful.

Summary

Checking your blood glucose and maintaining a daily log enables you to adjust foods and medications when necessary to better manage your blood sugar levels.

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What Is The Easiest Blood Glucose Meter To Use

Best User-Friendly: One Touch Ultra2 Blood Glucose Monitoring System. This glucometer is one of the most commonly used monitorsand with good reason. The device has larger display numbers for easier readouts, and its very simple to operate.

Can Apple watch measure blood sugar?

The new sensors, likely to be fitted on the back of the Apple Watch, will enable the device to measure the amount of sugar in a wearers blood. The Apple Watch, over the years, has gained more comprehensive health features, most recently with the Apple Watch Series 6 that added a blood oxygen sensor.

Is 130 a good blood sugar level?

Hello, fasting blood sugar in the range of 120 130 puts you firmly in diabetic territory, as does your hba1c of 7.4 which corresponds to an average blood sugar level of about 180. These levels would already require medications. Consider that normal fasting should be below 90 and normal hba1c is < 5.0.

How Does A Glucometer Help You

With a glucometer or blood glucose meter, you can check your blood sugar level at any time of the day. So you dont have to wait for a lab appointment or fast before you can have your blood glucose checked.

A glucometer is very useful for people with diabetes because it can help them:

  • Manage their blood sugar levels
  • Avoid low blood sugar levels
  • Prevent high blood sugar levels
  • Detect early signs of diabetes
  • Find out if their diabetes treatment is working

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When To Talk With A Pro

Testing your blood sugar is crucial to diabetes management. Using a meter or continuous glucose monitoring can provide accurate results. But you might seek a pain-free method to check blood sugar.

Talk with your doctor or a certified diabetes educator. You might be a candidate for a glucose monitoring device that involves fewer finger pricks or no finger pricks.

Additionally, making a few adjustments in the way you collect your blood sample might reduce the level of pain and discomfort.

What Is Normal Fasting Blood Sugar And What Is A Diabetes Blood Sugar Level

How to test your blood glucose (sugar) levels

The results of the fasting blood sugar test will come back as a number:

  • 99 mg/dL or lower: This is a normal fasting blood sugar level.
  • 100125 mg/dL: Fasting blood sugar in this range typically indicates prediabetes. This means your blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be classified as diabetes.
  • 126 mg/dL or above: This indicates high blood sugar, the main sign of diabetes.

If you have a high fasting blood sugar level, your healthcare provider may repeat the test to make sure. If the test reveals that you have prediabetes, your healthcare provider will recommend you repeat the fasting blood sugar test every year or two. The results will help you know whether you are progressing to Type 2 diabetes.

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What Do My Results Mean

When you finish the blood glucose check, write down your results and note what factors may have affected them, such as food, activity, and stress. Take a close look at your blood glucose record to see if your level is too high or too low several days in a row at about the same time. If the same thing keeps happening, it might be time to change your diabetes care plan. Work with your doctor or diabetes educator to learn what your results mean for you. It can take time to make adjustments and get things just right. And do ask your doctor if you should report results out of a certain range right away by phone.

Keep in mind that blood glucose results often trigger strong feelings. Blood glucose numbers can leave you upset, confused, frustrated, angry, or down. It’s easy to use the numbers to judge yourself. Remind yourself that tracking your blood glucose level is simply a way to know how well your diabetes care plan is working, and whether that plan may need to change.

How Do I Record My Blood Sugar Test Results

Keep good records of any blood, urine, or ketone tests you do. Most glucose monitors also have a memory. Your records can alert you to any problems or trends. These test records help your doctor make any needed changes in your meal plan, medicine, or exercise program. Bring these records with you every time you see your doctor.

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When To Go To The Er

High blood sugar can be very concerning because your body can start burning fat for energy instead of blood glucose.

This can cause conditions such as DKA and hyperglycemic hyperosmolar syndrome . These conditions are medical emergencies and can be fatal if left untreated.

DKA is a serious complication of type 1 diabetes. Its rare in people with type 2 diabetes, but can occur.

Symptoms that can indicate you should go to the emergency room include:

  • ketones in your urine, as diagnosed using a urine dipstick test

High blood sugar levels can cause a fluid imbalance in the body and can cause the blood to become acidic in a manner that doesnt support life.

Medical treatments for these conditions include administering intravenous insulin on a continuous basis and IV fluids to correct dehydration.

Summary

High blood sugar can become a medical emergency. Go to the ER if you suspect DKA or HHS.

When Should I Check My Blood Sugar

Blood Glucose Test Kit Home Self Monitor Glucose Meter

How often you check your blood sugar depends on the type of diabetes you have and if you take any diabetes medicines.

Typical times to check your blood sugar include:

  • When you first wake up, before you eat or drink anything.
  • Two hours after a meal.

If you have type 1 diabetes, have type 2 diabetes and take insulin, or often have low blood sugar, your doctor may want you to check your blood sugar more often, such as before and after youre physically active.

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How Do You Control Blood Sugar

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Which Of The Following Is Most Closely Related To Blood Sugar Control

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What Causes Low Blood Sugar

Low blood sugar has many causes, including missing a meal, taking too much insulin, taking other diabetes medicines, exercising more than normal, and drinking alcohol. Blood sugar below 70 mg/dL is considered low.

Signs of low blood sugar are different for everyone. Common symptoms include:

Know what your individual symptoms are so you can catch low blood sugar early and treat it. If you think you may have low blood sugar, check it even if you dont have symptoms. Low blood sugar can be dangerous and should be treated as soon as possible.

When Should You Test Your Blood Sugar

How to check your blood sugar

It depends on which type of diabetes you have:

  • Type 1 diabetes. Itâs up to your doctor. They could suggest you test anywhere between four and 10 times a day. For example, you could test before meals and snacks, before and after exercise, before bed, and even during the night. You may also need to check more often if youâre sick, making changes to your daily routine, or starting a new medication.
  • Type 2 diabetes. It depends on what you take to treat your diabetes:
  • Insulin. The doctor may tell you to test a few times a day, depending on the type and amount of insulin you use. Youâll probably test before meals and at bedtime if you’re taking multiple daily injections. You may need to test only twice daily, before breakfast and dinner, if you only use a long-acting insulin.
  • Medications. If you use drugs to manage diabetes, your doctor will tell you how often to check your blood sugar.
  • Lifestyle changes. If youâre relying on diet and exercise, you may not need to test your blood sugar daily.

Show Sources

American Diabetes Association: “Choosing a Blood Glucose Meter,” tion: “Standards of Medial Care in Diabetes — 2014,” “A1C and eAG,” âChecking Your Blood Glucose.â

Mayo Clinic: âBlood sugar testing: Why, when and how,â âType 2 diabetes.â

The National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse.

National Diabetes Foundation Program.

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What Is Continuous Glucose Monitoring

Continuous glucose monitoring allows you to know your blood sugar level at any time. This helps you notice patterns in blood sugar, and it can help you make decisions about food, exercise and medications. A continuous glucose monitor works with a tiny sensor thats inserted under your skin, often in your abdomen or arm. The sensor measures your blood sugar every few minutes and sends the reading to the monitor, which you can keep in your pocket. Some monitors transmit blood sugar readings directly to an app or phone. Continuous glucose monitors can be part of an insulin pump or an individual device.

Most people who use continuous glucose monitors have type 1 diabetes. Your health care provider may suggest using this tool if youre on intensive insulin therapy , have hypoglycemia unawareness or often have high or low blood sugar.

Testing your blood sugar at home as often as directed can help you learn if your diabetes treatment plan is working. Work with your health care team to learn how to interpret patterns in your readings and make adjustments in your food, exercise and medication regimen to help keep your blood sugar in a healthy range.

Originally published on June 14, 2013 clinically reviewed and updated June 17, 2021

Diabetes Testing And Monitoring

If you have diabetes, blood glucose monitoring can help you keep your glucose levels within a target range by balancing food, exercise and insulin, reducing your chances of diabetes complications. A range of testing and monitoring equipment is available to help people manage their diabetes. Your doctor or diabetes nurse or educator can advise you on the most appropriate equipment for you and your situation.

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners recommends that if you have type 2 diabetes and take oral medication only, you should talk to your doctor or specialist about the need to test your blood sugar levels at home, as most people in this situation do not need to do this type of monitoring. For further information, visit the Choosing Wisely Australia website.

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