Living with diabetes and diabetes management comes with a set of basic requirements out of which testing blood sugar levels regularly is the most essential part. Not only can you assess the impact of food, exercise and other lifestyle changes on your sugar levels, but you can analyse the same with your dedicated diabetes educator or healthcare professional who can better help to control diabetes and maintain normal sugar levels. Are you making some sugar testing mistakes while monitoring your blood sugar levels?
Although sugar monitoring devices like a compact glucometer facilitate management of diabetes through frequent sugar tests, even while you are on the go, these must be used with proper care and with the right guidelines to ensure the readings are accurate. Let us take a look at some commonly made mistakes while taking readings of blood sugar levels using sugar monitoring devices to control diabetes.
Eight Sugar Testing Mistakes While Taking Blood Glucose Level Readings
As part of diabetes management, right from the buying stage to the final usage of the glucometer, several factors must be accounted for in order to prevent the following mistakes most diabetics make:
1. Buying a Glucometer That Doesn’t Fit Your Daily Life
Everyone’s lifestyle and needs are different but one thing that remains constant for all diabetics is the necessity of measuring blood sugar levels on a daily basis. If you travel frequently, you need a glucometer which is compact and quick to measure the glucose levels. For an elderly person who is at home, a glucometer with a bigger display would be much more convenient to use and read.
2. Buying a Glucometer Not Covered by Your Health Insurance
Certain insurance companies have pre-defined criteria when it comes to covering the glucometer used by diabetics. In such a case, it is always advisable to opt for a device and other diabetes supplies for which coverage is available, as it will help you cover huge costs in the long run.
3. Wrong Setup of Glucometer and Wrong Testing Time
If the basic sugar testing with respect to the date, day and time is not done properly, all your reading reminders and sugar level logs can go haywire. Also, testing your blood sugar levels immediately after eating is another major mistake which leads to inaccurate readings. Be extra careful if you are using diabetes insulin.
4. Not Washing Hands Before Sugar Testing
Maintaining hygiene is by far the most important aspect of blood sugar monitoring. It is imperative to wash hands before taking a reading, even if your hands look clean. Especially if you have handled a fruit before taking a reading, it has been observed to affect your test results drastically.
5. Pricking the Fingertip
Not only is pricking the finger tip more painful, but it also results in less blood being squeezed out. The fingertips consist of all nerve endings and are the most sensitive spot in the human body. The best way is to place the hands flat with the fingertips and palms pressed together and then pricking the edges.
6. Not Tracking Test Results
Continuously testing but not tracking blood sugar results is as bad as not taking the readings in the first place. If a diabetic is not tracking the readings, they would not be able to assess what raises their blood sugar levels.
7. Skipping Meals
Although this may not seem important, if you look at the bigger picture of its importance for healthy body functions for both diabetics and non-diabetics, you will be better able to assess the same. Not eating might increase your blood sugar levels which could lead to resistance or insulin for diabetes.
8. Not Staying Hydrated
Avoid alcohol and ensure you drink enough water as dehydration can throw your blood sugar levels off balance. Dehydration also leads to the risk of affecting overall body functioning.
All these mistakes can be avoided if one is a little careful with their readings and ensures they are following all precautions while using the glucometer. Even though taking regular readings is important, just as taking insulin for diabetes, it is necessary the results are accurate every time and saved for convenient access in the diabetes management app.