Diabetic Testing Supplies Primer

 


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It is vital that, if you have diabetes, you test your blood sugar often. This will allow you to plan your meals and medications, essentially forming your daily treatment around your blood glucose level. Testing often will also allow you to understand how your lifestyle actually affects your diabetes. Stress, exercise, medicine and food all make a steady difference in your blood sugar level. In order to prevent diabetic complications, such as blindness and kidney failure it is important to keep track of your glucose level at all times.

Testing your blood sugar is best accomplished using a glucose meter. This can be purchased either through your health insurance, or on your own. If you utilize your health insurance to purchase a glucose meter, you may find that they can only pay for a certain brand which essentially predetermines your choices. If you have to pay for it yourself, check with your doctor for a preferred brand, or with your personal pharmacist. There are many different styles and models to choose from, so pick the one that suits your lifestyle best.

You will also need to have sterile finger lancets, test strips, and alcohol pads. Your insurance provider may also pay for these supplies. There are also even mail order companies that can send these supplies directly to your home, so researching those companies may save you time and money in the long run. If you cannot mail-order these products, do not fret. They can be purchased at any retail location that has a pharmacy.

Testing your blood with your glucose meter will become second nature over time. First of all, check with your doctor for his or her specific instructions. Next you will want to check your glucose meter instructions, because some meters work differently than others. Here are some general guidelines.

  • Wash your hands carefully and thoroughly, and for approximately two full minutes with a good antibacterial soap.
  • Next, wipe carefully using an alcohol pad. Most of the time, the blood will be drawn from your finger tip but some glucose meters also allow the use of the fleshy part of your hand, forearm or thigh. Be sure to check with your doctor about which area on the body to test, and to verify the testing procedure.
  • Next, you will want to prick the testing area with a lancet. Try to use the side of your finger, as it is generally less sensitive than the tip.
  • Next you will want to place the drawn drop of blood onto the end of a test strip.
  • Insert the test strip into your glucose meter in the way that is directed by that specific meter. Make sure that all directions are closely followed.
  • A number will be returned by your glucose meter, which will relate to the level of glucose in your blood.

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