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.
Realize Your Objective Range:
Your specialist will set target glucose test results to depend on a few elements, including:
- Type and seriousness of diabetes
For some individuals who have diabetes, Mayo Clinic, for the most part, suggests the accompanying target glucose levels before supper:
- Somewhere in the range of 80 and 120 milligrams for every deciliter for individuals age 59 and more youthful who have no other fundamental ailments.
- Somewhere in the range of 100 and 140 mg/dL for individuals age 60 and more seasoned, or for the individuals who have other ailments, for example, heart, lung or kidney illness or decreased capacity to detect low glucose levels .
For some individuals who have diabetes, the American Diabetes Association, by and large, suggests the accompanying target glucose levels:
- Somewhere in the range of 80 and 130 mg/dL before dinner
- Under 180 mg/dL two hours after dinner
Read Also: Where Can You Give Insulin Shots
How To Stay In Target
Eating healthy, exercising and taking medication, if necessary, will help you keep your blood sugar levels within their target range. Target ranges for blood sugar can vary depending on your age, medical condition and other risk factors.
Targets are different for pregnant women, older adults and children 12 years of age and under.
You May Like: Can Diabetics Eat Macaroni And Cheese
Random Blood Sugar Test
This measures your blood sugar at the time youre tested. You can take this test at any time and dont need to fast first. A blood sugar level of 200 mg/dL or higher indicates you have diabetes.
|140 mg/dL or below||N/A|
*Results for gestational diabetes can differ. Ask your health care provider what your results mean if youre being tested for gestational diabetes.Source: American Diabetes Association
If your doctor thinks you have type 1 diabetes, your blood may also tested for autoantibodies that are often present in type 1 diabetes but not in type 2 diabetes. You may have your urine tested for ketones , which also indicate type 1 diabetes instead of type 2 diabetes.
Read Also: When Is Insulin Prescribed For Gestational Diabetes
Before A Meal And Two Hours After Eating
Testing your glucose before a meal and two hours after eating helps you make good decisions about foods and medication, according to Kaiser Permanente. Testing before eating will tell you how much food to eat and how much medication you need. Testing several hours after you eat gives you information on whether you are taking enough medication to cover the food you eat during a meal.
Don’t Miss: What Happens If A Diabetic Eats Too Much Sugar
Fasting Blood Glucose Level Test Preparation
What should you do if your doctor orders a fasting blood sugar test? The preparation is the same as when you take a fasting test for cholesterol. First, be sure to find out if you need to schedule an appointment for your test . Ask your doctor what time is best to take it.
- Schedule your test if necessary
- Ask your doctor if you need to change any of the medications you take on the morning of the test
- If you normally drink coffee or have caffeine, ask your doctor if that is okay. It may not be, since it affects blood sugar levels
- Fast for at least 8 hours before your test. Usually, an overnight fast is most convenient
- You can drink water
Why You Should Test Your Blood Sugar Even If Youre Not Diabetic
Im pretty excited about Robb Wolfs new book, Wired to Eat, and have just released a podcast where he and I chat about lentils, blood sugar, and why . Before I talk more about the book, I thought Id give you a little context on why Im such a huge advocate of it
Ive always had blood sugar control issues. I think it goes back to being an undiagnosed Celiac as a kid, and constantly being hungry. I mean, I was starving ALL THE TIME. I could have eaten a full Thanksgiving dinner at any point during the day, and then some. I was really underweight as a kid, but always had a little belly. I also had a host of other issues like low muscle tone, hyper mobile joints, reading and attention problems, and had such low blood pressure that Id sometimes randomly pass out.
My small town, egocentric pediatrician declared I had lactose intolerance, and so he told my mother to give me diluted soy formula instead of milk. My daily meals looked something like this: Frosted Flakes with soy milk and orange juice plus banana for breakfast, canned chicken noodle soup for lunch, and Hamburger Helper for dinner. Rarely did we have fresh vegetables or a from scratch meal. My mom worked, and thought that homemaking was not for modern women, so my kitchen was stocked with Hungry Man dinners and Ritz crackers, cheese spread and the occasional bag of frozen string beans.
Heres the basic gist of the book:
Heres a short, well done video describing the study.
Whats Your Why?
Read Also: Which Pancreatic Cells Release Insulin And Glucagon
What Is Flash Glucose Monitoring
A flash glucose monitor is a small sensor that you wear just under your skin. We call it Flash for short.
It records your glucose levels continuously throughout the day and night. You can find out your levels by scanning the sensor whenever you want to.
The sensor doesnt actually measure your blood sugar level, it measures the amount of glucose in the fluid that surrounds your body cells called interstitial fluid. There is a small time delay when checking this fluid, especially after eating or if you’re exercising. So your flash glucose monitor result isn’t always exactly the same as your finger-prick result.
Flash is the most important tool I have . I use my Libre every single day, and it has vastly improved the quality of my life.
This means you’ll still need to do a finger-prick check if youre thinking of changing your treatment at any point, like if you need to take more insulin or if you’re treating a hypo, so you can get the most accurate result.
Check Your Blood Sugar If:
- You have symptoms of low blood sugar . This includes dizziness, shaking, sweating, chills, and confusion.
- You have symptoms of high blood sugar , which include sleepiness, blurry vision, frequent urination, and excessive thirst.
- You have a job in which poor blood sugar control could cause safety problems.
- You need help deciding if its safe to drive or perform other tasks that require concentration if you are taking insulin or have had hypoglycemia in the past.
You need to learn how meals, physical activity, and medicine affect your blood sugar level.
Also Check: Which Pancreatic Cells Release Insulin And Glucagon
What If I Cant Get A Drop Of Blood For A Fingerstick
If you want to get blood from your fingertip, try washing your hands in hot water to get the blood flowing. Then dangle your hand below your heart for a minute. Prick your finger quickly and then put your hand back down below your heart. You might also try slowly squeezing the finger from the base to the tip.
The Best Time To Check Blood Glucose After A Meal
Q: I was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Should I check my blood glucose two hours from when I start eating or after I finish eating my meal? A: Most of the food you consume will be digested and raises blood glucose in one to two hours. To capture the peak level of your blood glucose, it is best to test one to two hours after you start eating. The American Diabetes Association recommends a target of below 180 mg/dl two hours after a meal. The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists recommends a lower target: below 140 mg/dl two hours after a meal. Ask your doctor which target is right for you. Postmeal blood glucose monitoring is important because it helps you see how your body responds to carbohydrates in general and particular foods. Managing postmeal blood glucose can help reduce your risk of developing heart and circulation problems. Virginia Zamudio Lange, a member of Diabetic Living’s editorial advisory board, is a founding partner of Alamo Diabetes Team, LLP in San Antonio.Continue reading > >
- World’s first diabetes app will be able to check glucose levels without drawing a drop of blood and will be able to reveal what a can of coke REALLY does to sugar levels
Also Check: 2 Diabetic
Is There A Best Time To Check Your Blood Sugar
Blood observing is the primary instrument you need to check your diabetes control. This check reveals to you your blood glucose level at any one time. For a diabetic its the best way to find out what your blood sugars are.
Its significant for blood glucose levels to remain in a sound range. On the off chance that glucose levels get excessively low, we can lose the capacity to think and function typically.
If they get excessively high and remain high, it can make harm or difficulties the body through the span of numerous years. This is not a good thing!
Keeping a log of your outcomes is crucial. When you convey this record to your social insurance supplier, you have a decent image of your bodys reaction to your diabetes care plan.
To help monitor your dimensions, we should have a printable blood glucose log. We additionally should have a blood glucose log that is little so that you can convey it with you accessible for procurement.
What Causes High Morning Blood Sugars
Two main culprits prompt morning highs: the dawn phenomenon and waning insulin. A third, much rarer cause, known as the Somogyi effect, may also be to blame.
The occasional morning high will have little impact on your A1C, a measure of your average blood sugar levels over time that indicates how well managed your diabetes is. But if those highs become consistent, they could push your A1C up into dangerous territory.
You May Like: Is Metformin Bad For Your Liver
Can I Test My Blood Too Few Times
Depending on how your diabetes is treated, it is possible to test too little. For example, people with type 1 diabetes that are testing less than 4 times per day are likely to find it more difficult to understand their sugar levels and are likely to experience poorer control than someone testing at least 4 times per day.
Struggling to test your blood glucose levels as often you should can often be linked with psychologiocal issues such as being in denial about your diabetes , experiencing diabetes burnout or suffering from depression
If youre on medication that can cause hypos, you must by law test your blood sugar levels before each drive and at least as often as once every 2 hours of a journey. Failure to do this could lead to a hypo at the wheel and a number of road accidents happen every year in the UK as a result of hypoglycemia.
Diabetes.co.uk has been made aware that many people have experienced difficulty with being prescribed sufficient blood glucose testing supplies to adequately manage their diabetes.
- For more on this issue, read our guide on the availability of blood glucose test strips
When Should I Check My Blood Sugar Levels
The number of times you should test your blood sugar levels each day and when will depend on lots of different things. It might even change from day to day. In general, most people with diabetes test their blood sugar levels before breakfast, before lunch, before dinner, and again at bedtime.
You may need to check blood sugar levels more often when you’re sick or when changes have been made to your medication doses or schedule. You also may need to check more often if you suddenly become more active, like after you join a sports team at school.
People who use an insulin pump or who follow a plan to control blood sugar levels very closely also need to check their blood sugar levels more often. Your diabetes health care team will help you decide how often and when you should check.
Sometimes, blood sugar levels must be checked in the middle of the night for instance, by people who are having problems with hypoglycemia symptoms during the night. And those who have just been diagnosed with diabetes may need more frequent blood sugar level tests to get a feel for how certain doses of insulin or other diabetes medicines affect their blood sugar levels.
Also Check: Glucagon Alpha Cells
How Do Carbs Affect Blood Sugar
Carbs in food make your blood sugar levels go higher after you eat them than when you eat proteins or fats. You can still eat carbs if you have diabetes. The amount you can have and stay in your target blood sugar range depends on your age, weight, activity level, and other factors. Counting carbs in foods and drinks is an important tool for managing blood sugar levels. Make sure to talk to your health care team about the best carb goals for you.
Normal And Diabetic Blood Sugar Ranges
For the majority of healthy individuals, normal blood sugar levels are as follows:
- Between 4.0 to 5.4 mmol/L when fasting
- Up to 7.8 mmol/L 2 hours after eating
For people with diabetes, blood sugar level targets are as follows:
- Before meals : 4 to 7 mmol/L for people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes
- After meals : under 9 mmol/L for people with type 1 diabetes and under 8.5mmol/L for people with type 2 diabetes
You May Like: How Many Points Does Metformin Lower Blood Sugar
Urine Test For Blood Sugar
Urine does not normally contain glucose. The kidneys filter our blood, keeping substances the body needs, while getting rid of waste products. Your kidneys constantly reabsorb glucose so that it doesn’t enter your urine. However, if the glucose level goes above a certain level, the kidneys can’t reabsorb all of the glucose. This means that some glucose will ‘spill’ through the kidneys into the urine.
A simple dipstick test can detect glucose in a sample of urine. In a dipstick test a doctor or nurse uses a special chemical strip which he/she dips into a sample of your urine. Colour changes on the strip show whether there is glucose in the urine sample. If you have glucose in your urine, you are likely to have diabetes.
However, some people have kidneys that are more ‘leaky’ and glucose may leak into urine with a normal blood level. Therefore, if your urine contains any glucose, you should have a blood test to measure the blood level of glucose to confirm, or rule out, diabetes.
Low Blood Sugar Levels
Blood sugar that is too low can cause symptoms such as:
- shaking and sweating
As with low blood sugar, high blood sugar may cause loss of consciousness or seizures if people leave them untreated. Persistent high levels can increase the risk of serious complications that doctors relate to diabetes, such as cardiovascular disease.
Read Also: Which Pancreatic Cells Release Insulin And Glucagon
Why It Is Done
Blood glucose tests are done to:
- Check for diabetes.
- Monitor treatment of diabetes.
- Check for diabetes that occurs during pregnancy .
- Determine if an abnormally low blood sugar level is present. A test to measure blood levels of insulin and a protein called C-peptide may be done along with a blood glucose test to determine the cause of hypoglycemia. To learn more, see the topic C-Peptide.
What Is Hba1c Do I Need To Monitor My Hba1c Too
While a glucometer or CGM gives you the at-the-moment sugar level, HbA1c tells you the average blood sugar level over three months. This is typically measured every 3 – 6 months at your regular check-up with your doctor.
Why is it important to check your HbA1c regularly?
The HbA1c gives an indication of how well controlled your diabetes is. As your blood sugar level can fluctuate minute to minute, the HbA1c gives you and your doctor an idea of what your blood sugar level is on average. This allows you and your doctor to monitor the control of your diabetes at each review , and make adjustments to your treatment plan.
Lowering your HbA1c can bring long term benefits. Two large-scale studies the UK Prospective Diabetes Study and the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial demonstrated that improving HbA1c by 1% for people with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes cuts the risk of microvascular complications by 25%.Microvascular complications include:
Research has also shown that people with type 2 diabetes who reduce their HbA1c level by 1% are:
19% less likely to suffer cataracts
16% less likely to suffer heart failure
43% less likely to suffer amputation or death due to peripheral vascular disease
What should my HbA1c level be?
Read Also: Signs Of Hyperglycemia In Adults