Whats My Target Range
You might be asking, what’s the normal range for blood sugar levels? The answer is, there is a healthy range that you should ideally be aiming for. The infographics above show the general guidelines, but your individual target range for your blood sugar levels may be different. Youll healthcare team will agree with you what it is.
Youll get different readings at different times of the day, depending on things like what youve eaten and how much you are moving around. Heres a guide to help you get started on finding your target range:
If youre a child with Type 1 diabetes
- when you wake up and before meals: 4 to 7mmol/l
- after meals: 5 to 9mmol/l
If youre an adult with Type 1 diabetes
- when you wake up and before meals: 5 to 7mmol/l
- before meals at other times of the day: 4 to 7mmol/l
If you have Type 2 diabetes
- before meals: 4 to 7mmol/l
- two hours after meals: less than 8.5mmol/l
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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When To Seek Medical Care
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How Do I Check My Blood Sugar
You use a blood glucose meter to check your blood sugar. This device uses a small drop of blood from your finger to measure your blood sugar level. You can get the meter and supplies in a drug store or by mail.
Read the directions that come with your meter to learn how to check your blood sugar. Your health care team also can show you how to use your meter. Write the date, time, and result of the test in your blood sugar record. Take your blood sugar record and meter to each visit and talk about your results with your health care team.
Blood Glucose Target Levels
Blood glucose is checked using fingerprick monitoring. Blood glucose targets are individual to each person, and you should agree your own target levels with your diabetes care team. The target blood glucose ranges in Table 1 below are indicated as a guide only.
Table 1: Target blood glucose ranges
*National Institute of Clinical Excellence 2015
** Diabetes UK Council of Health Care Professionals 2015
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Several Methods Can Be Used To Test Blood Sugar
There are a number of different methods that can be used to check your blood sugar, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. For example, some people use the finger prick method while others will check their levels using a continuous glucose monitor. The best way for you to check your blood sugar is going to depend on your personal preference. And weve included information about both types in this article.
Finger Prick Method
The finger prick method is one of the most common ways to check blood sugar levels. This method involves pricking your finger with a needle and then placing the blood on a test strip. The test strip will then give you a reading of your blood sugar level.
This method is often used because it is quick and easy to do. It also doesnt require any special equipment or supplies. However, it can be painful to prick your finger, and it can also be difficult to get an accurate reading if your fingers are wet or sweaty.
If youre looking for a fast and easy way to check your blood sugar levels, the finger prick method may be the best option for you. Just make sure to keep your fingers dry and clean to get the most accurate reading.
Continuous Glucose Monitor
A continuous glucose monitor is a device that measures blood sugar levels continuously. This type of monitor is often used by people with diabetes because it gives a more accurate reading than the finger prick method.
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.
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Levels In The Morning
The best time to check blood sugar levels in the morning is right when you wake up and before you eat anything. This gives you a glimpse of what may be happening overnight, and it gives you a baseline for the day.
These are goal levels, according to The Joslin Diabetes Center:
- Under 70 mg/dl if you do not have diabetes.
- 70 to 130 mg/dl if you have diabetes.
The dawn effect can often lead to a high morning measurement in diabetes. This is your bodys tendency to get ready for the day by raising blood sugar by increasing levels of counter-regulatory hormones the ones that counteract insulin as in normal blood sugar. For people with diabetes, you do not have the capacity to counterbalance this rise in blood sugar, so levels can be dangerously high.
Ways to lower your morning blood sugar value include:
- Eating dinner earlier
- Checking your medications making sure you are taking them properly and asking your doctor if they are correct
- Going for a walk after dinner
- Including protein with your dinner
Managing Blood Sugar When Youre Ill
When you get sick, your blood sugar levels may fluctuate and become unpredictable.
If you’re sick, it’s very important that you:
- drink plenty of water or sugar-free fluids
- check your blood sugar levels more often than usual
- take 15 grams of carbohydrate every hour if you are not able to follow your usual meal plan
- replace food with fluids that contain sugar if you can’t eat solid food
- continue to take your insulin or other diabetes medication
If you have a cold or flu and want to use a cold remedy or cough syrup, ask your pharmacist to help you make a good choice. Many cold remedies and cough syrups contain sugar, so try to pick sugar-free products.
As an extra precaution, you should always check with your health-care team about guidelines for insulin adjustment or medication changes during an illness.
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When Should I Test My Blood Sugar
You may need to check your blood sugar several times a day, such as before meals or exercise, at bedtime, before driving, and when you think your blood sugar levels are low.
Everyone is different, so ask your doctor when and how often you should check your blood sugar. If you’re sick, you’ll probably need to test your blood sugar more often.
Where To Check Blood Sugar: 6 Best Places To Check Your Blood Sugar
by Sunshine · March 25, 2020
Monitoring blood sugar levels to prevent complications from diabetes is recommended by the American Diabetes Association. If you have diabetes, a chronic condition that can usually be controlled by lifestyle changes, self-care measures, and medication, it is crucial for you to monitor your blood sugar levels.
If you happen to have the condition and want to give your fingers a break from frequent monitoring , this article presents the six alternative best places to check blood sugar according to studies. Dont forget to discuss with your healthcare provider to know which options suit you best.
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Know Your Blood Sugar
Blood sugar is the amount of sugar in your blood at a given time. It’s important to check your blood sugar level, because it will:
- determine if you have a high or low blood sugar level at a given time
- show you how your lifestyle and medication affect your blood sugar levels
- help you and your diabetes health-care team make lifestyle and medication changes to improve your blood sugar levels
How Often Should I Check My Blood Sugar
The number of times that you check your blood sugar will depend on the type of diabetes that you have and the type of medicine you take to treat your diabetes. For example, people who take insulin may need to check more often than people who do not take insulin. Talk with your health care team about how often to check your blood sugar.
The common times for checking your blood sugar are when you first wake up , before a meal, 2 hours after a meal, and at bedtime. Talk with your health care team about what times are best for you to check your blood sugar.
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How To Test Blood Sugar
People with diabetes usually check their blood sugar levels themselves. However, its a good idea to have a roommate, friend, or family member also know how to do it if you are sick and cant do it yourself.
To use a blood sugar meter, follow these steps:
If you are interested in CGM, you should talk to your healthcare provider since these are prescription devices. To use CGM, follow these steps:
You will also need to change the sensors on the CGM regularly, usually every one to two weeks.
Can You Check Blood Sugar Without Pricking Finger
Can you check blood sugar without pricking finger? Flash glucose monitoring is sensor technology that enables you to test your glucose levels without pricking your finger. This technology is available in FreeStyle Libre and FreeStyle Libre 2.
How do I check my blood sugar without a needle? Abbotts new FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System, approved Wednesday by the Food and Drug Administration, uses a small sensor attached to the upper arm. Patients wave a reader device over it to see the current blood sugar level and changes over the past eight hours.
How can you tell if your diabetic without pricking your finger? Upon its approval by the Food and Drug Administration in 2017 , the FreeStyle Libre was the first CGM on the market for adults with diabetes that didnt require blood samples from finger pricks. Instead, this meter reads glucose from interstitial fluids just underneath the skin.
Do you have to use your finger to test blood sugar? Prick your finger with the lancing device at the sides of the finger as there are less nerve ending here than at the tips or the pads. Recommended finger: the World Health Organisation recommends the middle or ring fingers are used for blood glucose tests .
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How Can I Pay For Tests And Diabetes Supplies
Medicareexternal icon, Medicaid, and most private insurance plans pay for the A1C test and fasting blood sugar test as well as some diabetes supplies. Check your plan or ask your health care team for help finding low-cost or free supplies, and see How to Save Money on Diabetes Care for more resources.
What Should I Do If My Blood Sugar Gets Too High
High blood sugar is also called hyperglycemia . It means that your blood sugar level is higher than your target level or over 180. Having high blood sugar levels over time can lead to long-term, serious health problems.
If you feel very tired, thirsty, have blurry vision, or need to pee more often, your blood sugar may be high.
Check your blood sugar and see if it is above your target level or over 180. If it is too high, one way to lower it is to drink a large glass of water and exercise by taking a brisk walk. Call your health care team if your blood sugar is high more than 3 times in 2 weeks and you dont know why.
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When Not To Use Alternative Site Testing
There are circumstances when alternative testing is not recommended. These include:
- When you have just taken insulin
- During or after exercise
- If you feel you might be experiencing low blood sugar
- When you are preparing to drive
- When you are or suspect that you are ill
- Do not use an alternative site unless you have discussed it with your healthcare provider first and you are able to follow his recommendations.,
- Do not use an alternative site unless it is identified in the instructions for your blood glucose meter.
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 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.
Tests For Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes is diagnosed using blood tests. Youll probably be tested between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy. If your risk is higher for getting gestational diabetes , your doctor may test you earlier. Blood sugar thats higher than normal early in your pregnancy may indicate you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes rather than gestational diabetes.
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How To Check Blood Sugar Without A Meter
Diabetes is a chronic condition where the body either doesnt make enough insulin or doesnt use insulin properly or both. This can lead to a higher than normal blood sugar level.
Uncontrolled blood sugar levels can lead to complications, such as:
- heart disease
- nerve damage
For these reasons, its important to monitor your blood sugar if you have diabetes.
Prior to using meters, people with diabetes would monitor their blood sugar by testing their urine. This method, however, wasnt as accurate, nor did it provide real-time results.
If you self-test your blood sugar several times a day using a glucometer, or meter, it requires that you prick your finger to draw blood to test. Due to the discomfort of this method, you might look for a way to monitor your level without this tool.
If finger pricks are very bothersome for you, dont worry theres hope. Advances in blood sugar monitoring technology could mean no more finger pricks in the future.
If you have diabetes, there are several portable devices you can use to check your blood sugar level and not all of them require a finger prick.