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Self-Monitoring of Blood Glucose (SMBG): A Tool To Empower People With Diabetes

Self-Monitoring of Blood Glucose (SMBG): A Tool To Empower People With Diabetes

Self-monitoring of blood glucose or SMBG is testing the blood to check glucose levels at home in people with diabetes. It is used to check blood glucose regularly to understand whether one's diabetes is under control or not and also inform changes to improve one's control or wider regime.

Benefits of self-monitoring of blood glucose

There are many benefits of home blood glucose testing:

  • SMBG helps to identify which foods are good to eat for keeping control on blood glucose level.
  • SMBG helps to individualize type and duration of daily exercises for people with type 1, or type 2, or gestational diabetes.
  • It helps to inform patients and doctor about how good the prescribed medications and working.
  • SMBG reduces the anxiety about and increases understanding of hypoglycemia (blood glucose level <70 mg/dl) and helps in to identify a pattern of hypoglycemia.

The benefits are most pronounced when there is willingness and commitment to test on the patients' part and they have been given enough information and training on when to test blood glucose levels and interpreting the results to get the most out of the testing.

Every diabetic is different, so it is best to ask your doctor when and how often you should check your blood sugars. If you're sick, you may need to test more often. Monitoring blood sugar at home can help determine your blood sugar level to see if you need to adjust your diet, exercise, or any medications. Low blood sugar levels or hypoglycaemia can lead to seizures or a coma if left untreated whereas high blood sugar or hyperglycaemia can cause ketoacidosis, which again is a life-threatening condition. Hyperglycemia over a long period can increase the risk for neuropathy (nerve damage), along with heart, kidney, and eye diseases in diabetics. Also, home testing becomes even more crucial if you have type 2 diabetes and have a diet- and exercise-based treatment plan.

What you learn from testing your blood sugar levels?

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), the following are the target blood sugar levels:

- Between 80 and 130 mg/dL before meals

- Less than 180 mg/dL two hours after meals

Your doctor can help set your blood sugar goals as these values may vary with age, severity of diabetes, presence of any complications and overall health and other medical conditions. Some experts recommend testing blood sugar levels three times a day. The time of the day at which you test your blood sugar level reveals some important information. If you do a test in the mornings before eating you will be able to understand how well your body is regulating blood sugars overnight. Testing blood sugars before or one or two hours after the beginning of your meal helps you understand how food and portion choices affect the values as well as how well your treatment pan is working to control the increase in blood sugar level from the last meal. Similarly, if you test before a meal, it will tell whether or not your bloods sugar level has returned to target since your last meal and if you need to adjust the carbohydrates in your next meal. A test before any physical activity like a workout is important to know if you need a snack before you start the activity and testing after the activity will reveal the effect of the activity on the sugar levels. You should also test when you're sick as stress elves have a direct impact on blood sugar levels.

Buying And Using A Glucometer?

The first step is to meet your doctor to discuss when and how frequently you should test and what your target values should be. It is then important to buy a reliable and accurate glucometer for blood sugar testing as this is the most imprint tool in SMBG. Whether you're looking for blood glucose meters, test strips, or apps, OneTouch has what you need to help you manage your diabetes. Using ISO-15197:2013 certified glucometers ensure your accurate blood glucose level. Simple to use glucometers with colour coding technology such as ColorSure Technology of OneTouch glucometers help patients to understand the correct meaning of the blood glucose value. Patients can take immediate actions based on the low and high blood glucose values indicated by ColorSure Technology.

1. OneTouch Select Plus Simple Meter

This glucometer is simple to use, has no buttons and requires no set up or coding. You can use it right out of the box. All you need to do is insert a OneTouch Select Plus test strip, apply a drop of blood to the top of the strip and your result is there on the screen in 5 seconds. This meter also makes it easy to understand if your blood sugar reading is "low," "in range," or "high"  with ColourSure technology. The OneTouch Select Plus Simple Meter meets the latest international standards for accuracy (EN ISO 15197:2015 ) and offers virtually a pain free testing with the OneTouch Delica Plus lancing device. 

2. OneTouch Verio Flex System:

OneTouch Verio Flex blood glucose monitoring system, with ColorSure™ technology – is a simple, accurate and easy-to-use meter that takes the guesswork out of understanding blood sugar test results for people with diabetes.  Its simple colour range indicator uses colour to instantly tell patients when their blood glucose readings are "low," "in range," or "high" so they can quickly get on with their lives.

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This blood sugar monitoring device is certified to the latest international standards for accuracy (EN ISO 15197:2015 ) and offers virtually a pain free testing with the OneTouch Delica Plus lancing device.  OneTouch Verio Flex™ blood glucose monitoring system syncs data seamlessly with the free OneTouch Reveal mobile app. The OneTouch Reveal app with ColorSure technology automatically organizes your blood sugar results in a color-coded logbook and dashboards that link with your logged food, insulin and activity. It also helps you See and share your progress with your family, friends or trusted care network.

You can then learn how to measure your blood glucose properly by following these steps:

Wash your hands with soapy water and dry them well.

Insert the test strip into the glucometer.

Prick the end of a finger (on the side). You can gently squeeze the end of your finger, if necessary.

Apply the blood to the test strip.

Wait a few seconds or the time indicated on the glucomter.

Read and write down the result in a logbook or store it in the glucose meter.

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Managing Diabetes - A Touch Away

Managing Diabetes - A Touch Away

According to the 9th edition of the Diabetes Atlas by the International Diabetes Foundation, 1 in 6 people with Diabetes in the world are from India.

With an estimated 77 million people with Diabetes, India is number two in the world after China (116 million) in terms of the most number of diabetics in the world.

Given the epidemic proportions and the spread of the disease, it is important to know not just about prevention measures but also how a diabetic can effectively manage the disease.

The NDTV campaign, Managing Diabetes - A Touch Away, supported by One Touch aims to highlight the importance of regular and meaningful monitoring of blood glucose at home in addition to lifestyle changes and medication in managing Diabetes