There are many ways for measuring blood glucose levels. This form of measuring helps many people control their blood sugar levels, thereby staying healthy, especially if they suffer from diabetes. Regardless of numerous existing measuring systems, the principles behind measuring blood sugar levels are basically the same.
You can read all about these processes through the lines below, learning more about glucose levels in the blood per se, as well as all the different ways of measuring these.
Glucose Monitoring System
Most pharmacies have complete testing kits for measuring blood glucose levels. Thus, most of us can obtain these devices over-the-counter, without a doctor's prescription. Yet, a doctor or a nurse can help us make the right choice, when it comes to selecting the testing kits best for our purposes.
Most of these devices require us to prick the tip of our finger with a special needle and place the drop of blood that we release this way onto a special testing strip. The strip is made out of plastic, metal and some special chemicals which determine the amount of sugar in the blood. A vast majority of these devices can give adequate results only with the blood from the finger provided. On the other hand, there are some new models which can give accurate results with blood obtained from other parts of the body.
Once the whole process is done successfully, the results are displayed on digital displays that these devices contain.
Before doing this test, you are advised to prepare for it well, by placing all the items you will need to be within your reach. For example, you can benefit from unpacking the strips, preparing the needle and turning the measuring device on. Before and after using the prick needle, you should wash it with soap and water or by using a swab you have previously dipped in alcohol. However, both the skin and the needle need to be absolutely dry prior to the testing.
Due to the fact that the needle is sharp and the fingertip area is sensitive, a sharp pain may be felt during the blood-obtaining stage.
Nevertheless, this measurement process is very important since it gives you the capability to monitor the changes in your blood glucose levels, knowing how these behave after and before meals, helping you determine the ideal time for your medications. Also, this will allow you to see how different types of food, as well as different variants of physical activity affect the blood glucose levels in your body.
When you get the results, you can react properly, either dealing with the high sugar levels you have or the low sugar levels in your body. Note that low levels of blood sugar will require you to eat something or to modify the dose of insulin you will administer next, while the high levels of blood sugar will indicate that you need to receive an additional dosage of insulin.
Finally, some other things you might want to bear in mind are the danger of having the spot where you prick the skin with the needle infected and experiencing prolonged bleeding even after the procedure is done.
If your results are normal, these should be somewhere between 70 and 130mg/dL before you eat something and less than 180mg/dL after you eat.
Risks of Blood Sugar Monitoring
In order for the whole blood sugar monitoring procedure to be done successfully, you need to make sure that you have followed all the steps adequately.
In general, there are minimal risks related to this process. Basically, you might develop bruises on or around the spot where the needle penetrated the skin. However, you can reduce the chances for this happening by pressing the area with your finger, immediately after the blood has been drawn.
Alternatively, if the puncture wound becomes inflamed, you can treat it by exposing it to warm compresses several times a day.
Finally, the only group of people who might experience serious problems during the blood glucose monitoring processes are people who suffer from blood disorders and bleeding disorders like hemophilia. Additionally, some medications like aspirin and some other blood-thinners are known to increase chances of excessive bleeding during blood glucose monitoring. Thus, before you perform the procedure, you are advised to make sure that you are not under the influence of such medications.
For all other questions you might have related to the procedure, you should turn to your doctor, preferably before you draw the blood yourself and indulge into the process.
All in all, blood sugar monitoring is a process which is invaluable to all who suffer from diabetes and those who desire to get insight into their blood sugar levels for some other reasons. There are several types of test kits for this purpose and all of them are based on the same method, involving a blood sample, testing strips and a device calculating the resuts.