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Who Is Most At Risk For Developing Diabetes

How to test your blood glucose (sugar) levels

The following categories of people are considered “high-risk” candidates for developing diabetes:

  • Individuals who have overweight or obesity.
  • Individuals who are 45 years of age or older.
  • Individuals with first-degree relatives with diabetes .
  • Individuals who are Black, Alaska Native, American Indian, Asia American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islanders.
  • People who developed diabetes while they were pregnant or gave birth to large babies .
  • Individuals with high blood pressure .
  • Individuals with high-density lipoprotein below 25 mg/dl or triglyceride levels at or above 250 mg/dl.
  • Individuals who have impaired fasting glucose or impaired glucose tolerance.
  • Individuals who are physically inactive engaging in exercise less than three times a week.
  • Individuals who have polycystic ovary syndrome, also called PCOS.
  • Individuals who have acanthosis nigricans, which are dark, thick and velvety skin around your neck or armpits.

In addition to testing the above individuals at high risk, the American Diabetes Association also recommends screening all individuals age 45 and older.

When Is The Best Time To Check Your Blood Sugar With Type 2 And No Medicine

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When Should Testing Occur

A doctor might recommend testing at three different times, and often over the course of several days:

  • Morning fasting reading: This provides information about blood glucose levels before a person eats or drinks anything. Taking blood glucose readings before eating provides a baseline number. This number offers clues about glucose processes during the day.
  • Before a meal: Blood glucose before a meal tends to be low, so a high blood glucose reading at this time suggests difficulties managing blood sugar.
  • After a meal: Post-meal testing gives a good idea about how the body reacts to food, and if sugar can reach the cells efficiently. Blood glucose readings after a meal can help diagnose gestational diabetes, which happens during pregnancy. Most doctors recommend testing about 2 hours after a meal.

The doctor will personalize the glucose monitoring schedule for the individual.

  • Fasting : 80â130 milligrams per deciliter
  • Before meals: 70â130 mg/dl
  • Two hours after starting meals: Below 180 mg/dl
  • At bedtime: Under 120 mg/dl
  • HbA1c: 7.0 percent or lower

Before beginning home testing, it is important that people get clear, target figures from their doctor.

Target numbers may vary from person to person and may change over time, depending on an individualâs health, age, weight, and other factors.

For people who do not have diabetes, blood sugar levels should be within the following ranges:

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How Can I Treat High Blood Sugar

Talk to your doctor about how to keep your blood sugar levels within your target range. Your doctor may suggest the following:

  • Be more active. Regular exercise can help keep your blood sugar levels on track. Important: dont exercise if ketones are present in your urine. This can make your blood sugar go even higher.
  • Take medicine as instructed. If your blood sugar is often high, your doctor may change how much medicine you take or when you take it.
  • Follow your diabetes meal plan. Ask your doctor or dietitian for help if youre having trouble sticking to it.
  • Check your blood sugar as directed by your doctor. Check more often if youre sick or if youre concerned about high or low blood sugar.
  • Talk to your doctor about adjusting how much insulin you take and what types of insulin to use.

A1c Tests Can Be Affected By Changes In Red Blood Cells Or Hemoglobin

How to monitor blood sugar, Health News

Conditions that change the life span of red blood cells, such as recent blood loss, sickle cell disease, erythropoietin treatment, hemodialysis, or transfusion, can change A1C levels.

A falsely high A1C result can occur in people who are very low in iron for example, those with iron-deficiency anemia. Other causes of false A1C results include kidney failure or liver disease.

If youre of African, Mediterranean, or Southeast Asian descent or have family members with sickle cell anemia or a thalassemia, an A1C test can be unreliable for diagnosing or monitoring diabetes and prediabetes. People in these groups may have a different type of hemoglobin, known as a hemoglobin variant, which can interfere with some A1C tests. Most people with a hemoglobin variant have no symptoms and may not know that they carry this type of hemoglobin. Health care professionals may suspect interferencea falsely high or low resultwhen your A1C and blood glucose test results dont match.

Not all A1C tests are unreliable for people with a hemoglobin variant. People with false results from one type of A1C test may need a different type of A1C test to measure their average blood glucose level. The NGSP provides information for health care professionals about which A1C tests are appropriate to use for specific hemoglobin variants.

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What Factors Affect Blood Sugar

You can guess that carbohydrate intake and insulin production are at least partly responsible for your blood sugar levels. But the list is much longer — almost every lifestyle choice you make can affect your blood sugar. Here’s just a partial list.

  • Exercise can affect insulin sensitivity, leading to lower blood sugar for up to 48 hours.
  • Alcohol intake increases insulin production, causing low blood sugar.
  • Stress hormones like cortisol can raise blood sugar, because your body wants access to energy in order to escape what it perceives as a dangerous situation.
  • Medications, especially statins and diuretics, can raise blood sugar. Statins are used to treat cholesterol, and diuretics for high blood pressure.
  • Diet is a major player in blood sugar. Eating too many simple carbs at once can cause levels to skyrocket, while protein intake leads to a slower increase in blood sugar.
  • Dehydration raises blood sugar, because with less water in your body the glucose concentration will be higher.

Other surprising factors can affect your blood sugar, like a sunburn or gum disease, so if you’re dealing with a blood sugar issue and can’t figure out what’s causing your spikes and dips, talk to a healthcare professional.

When Does A Person Need To Have Their Blood Glucose Measured With This Test

Prediabetes, Type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes often have no symptoms at first. A person can have the condition and not know it. Healthcare providers usually order a fasting blood sugar test:

  • As part of a standard annual physical examination to monitor a persons blood glucose over time.
  • For pregnant women to ensure that pregnancy hormones are not causing diabetes.
  • When a person has symptoms of diabetes, a family history of diabetes or risk factors for diabetes .
  • When a person has had a previous blood glucose level that was higher than normal.

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How Do Diabetic Medications Work

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What Else Can I Do To Help Manage My Blood Sugar Levels

How to Test Your Blood Sugar

Eating a healthy diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, maintaining a healthy weight, and getting regular physical activity can all help. Other tips include:

  • Keep track of your blood sugar levels to see what makes them go up or down.
  • Eat at regular times, and dont skip meals.
  • Choose foods lower in calories, saturated fat, trans fat, sugar, and salt.
  • Track your food, drink, and physical activity.
  • Drink water instead of juice or soda.
  • Limit alcoholic drinks.
  • For a sweet treat, choose fruit.
  • Control your food portions .

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Other Tips For Checking:

  • With some meters, you can also use your forearm, thigh, or fleshy part of your hand.
  • There are spring-loaded lancing devices that make sticking yourself less painful.
  • If you use your fingertip, stick the side of your fingertip by your fingernail to avoid having sore spots on the frequently used part of your finger.

What Is A Blood Glucose Test

Blood Glucose testing is an important part of diabetes care. Blood glucose monitoring is the regular check of blood glucose level. The implementation of blood glucose monitoring can better control the blood glucose changes of diabetic patients, and has important guiding significance for life rules, activities, exercise, diet and rational use of drugs, and can help patients find problems at any time and seek medical treatment in time.

If you have diabetes, self-testing your blood sugar can be an important tool in managing your diabetes and preventing complications. You can test your blood sugar at home with a portable electronic device called a blood sugar meter using a small drop of your blood. You can also use a device called a continuous glucose monitor .

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Talking With Your Doctor About Your Target Blood Sugar Levels

In general, your target will be 80130 mg/dl before a meal and less than 180 mg/dl after a meal.

In addition to daily monitoring, your doctor will measure your HbA1c at regular intervals. This blood test helps your doctor understand if your treatment plan is working to control your blood sugar levels. An ideal HBA1c level should not exceed 7%.

Carrying out this test will also help you and your doctor determine the next step to take in your diabetes management plan.

What Do My Results Mean

Its SciTime: Glucose Test (Benedict

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.

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What Is The A1c Test

The A1C test is a simple blood test that measures your average blood sugar levels over the past 2 or 3 months. The test is done at a lab or your doctors office in addition tonot instead ofregular blood sugar testing you do yourself.

A1C testing is part of the ABCs of diabetesimportant steps you can take to prevent or delay health complications down the road:

The A1C goal for most adults with diabetes is between 7% and 8%, but your goal may be different depending on your age, other health conditions, medicines youre taking, and other factors. Work with your doctor to establish a personal A1C goal for you.

How It Is Done

Checking your blood sugar involves pricking your finger, palm, or forearm with a lancet to collect a drop of blood. The blood drop is placed on a test strip, which you insert into the blood glucose meter. The instructions for testing are slightly different for each blood glucose meter model. Follow the instructions that came with your meter.

  • Wash your hands with warm, soapy water. Dry them well with a clean towel. You may also use an alcohol wipe to clean your finger or other site. But make sure your hands are dry before the test.
  • Insert a clean lancet into the lancet device.
  • Remove a test strip from the test strip bottle. Replace the lid right away to keep moisture away from the other strips.
  • Follow the instructions that came with your meter to get it ready.
  • Use the lancet device to stick the side of your fingertip with the lancet. Do not stick the tip of your finger. Some blood sugar meters use lancet devices that take the blood sample from other sites, such as the palm of the hand or the forearm. But the finger is usually the most accurate place to test blood sugar.
  • Put a drop of blood on the correct spot on the test strip.
  • Apply pressure with a clean cotton ball to stop the bleeding.
  • Follow the directions that came with the meter to get the results.
  • Write down the results and the time that you tested your blood. Some meters will store the results for you.

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Type 2 And Gestational Diabetes

In type 2 and gestational diabetes , your body still produces insulin, but it doesn’t use it efficiently. This is called insulin resistance and it makes blood sugar levels rise.

If you one of these conditions, you may only need to test two to four times per day. You may test much more often, though, especially when your diagnosis is new and your levels aren’t yet stable.

You may check:

  • First thing in the morning and before bed
  • Before each meal and before bed
  • Before and two hours after each meal and before bed

In part, this depends on whether you take insulin or use other medications. If you manage your diabetes with non-insulin medication and know your typical patterns, you may not even need to test daily.

Types Of Blood Sugar Tests

How to test your blood glucose levels | Diabetes UK

You can take a blood sugar test two ways. People who are monitoring or managing their diabetes prick their finger using a glucometer for daily testing. The other method is drawing blood.

Blood samples are generally used to screen for diabetes. Your doctor will order a fasting blood sugar test. This test measures your blood sugar levels, or a glycosylated hemoglobin, also called a hemoglobin A1C test. The results of this test reflect your blood sugar levels over the previous 90 days. The results will show if you have prediabetes or diabetes and can monitor how your diabetes is controlled.

When and how often you should test your blood sugar depends on the type of diabetes you have and your treatment.

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Why Check Blood Sugars

Checking your childs blood sugar tells you the amount of glucose in your childs blood and is a key part of daily care. Each time you check, you will know if your childs blood sugar is inside or outside the healthy range set by the care team.

Checking blood sugars regularly can help you and your child:

  • Feel more in control of diabetes.
  • Find out how food, exercise, and diabetes medicine affect the blood sugar.
  • Know when you need to make any changes to food, exercise, and diabetes medicines.
  • Prevent health problems that can happen now or in the future.

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