Diabetes and Diabetic Care: Importance of Monitoring Blood Glucose Levels
Since your doctor already told bad news that you have diabetes, then it’s time to make few changes to your habits and overall lifestyle, and you probably have to use a small device called blood glucose meter. But, why is it important to regularly check your blood glucose levels? Let us talk about it.
Diabetes is a chronic disease affecting glucose or sugar metabolism, wherein the pancreas is not able to produce insulin as seen in type 1 diabetes, or it cannot produce enough insulin as shown in type 2 diabetes, resulting in inappropriate breakdown of insulin or insulin resistance. Diabetes is a lifetime health condition that requires thorough monitoring, medical management, and healthy lifestyle such as having healthy eating habits, weight loss and increased physical activity. Patients with type 1 diabetes need to take insulin injections for life, and for type 2 diabetes, you will be required to eventually have to take oral medication and via insulin injection in some cases.
The signs and symptoms of diabetes are often unnoticed, after a patient experiences hyperglycemia or too high blood sugar levels or hypoglycemia or too low blood sugar levels. Too high blood glucose levels may lead to serious complications such as myocardial infarction or heart attack, stroke, kidney problems that may require dialysis, blindness, erectile dysfunction and problems with blood circulation and scarring, which may lead to amputation. Thus, it is important to avoid these complications, and patients need to monitor and control their blood glucose levels with reliable blood glucose meter to minimize the serious risk of hyperglycemia. Blood sugar monitoring using a reliable blood glucose meter is a crucial part of diabetes management, allowing patients to study and integrate the impact of different diabetes care measures to control diabetes, such as losing weight, changing diet, doing exercise or any physical activity and medication intake.
There are many types of blood glucose meters available online and in actual medical supply stores, ranging from basic models that merely reads blood glucose levels, to more advanced blood glucose meter versions, with various features such as memory for storing information. The cost of blood glucose meter and blood test varies, and insurance companies may not always provide coverage for these, so there are things you must take into consideration before buying your own blood glucose meter, to get your money’s worth. Thus, you need to consider the cost, your doctor’s suggestion, ease of use, length of time to read and show the result, maintenance, and special features. There are many brands available in the market today, with special features like audio capability for patients with visual impairment, back lit screens to aid low-light visibility, memory to store readings, different handling capabilities such as having a USB meter or strips stored in meters, and ability to test blood ketone levels along with blood glucose levels.