Controlling Diabetes with Continuous Glucose Monitoring

By: mikeherman1
Having diabetes means a lifetime of maintaining their diabetes and the blood sugar and controlling their glucose levels.

The blood sugar level shows of how much glucose, which is a basic sugar, is found in the bloodstream. Glucose, in one form or another, is in many of the foods that we eat, so diet is a very important part of controlling the glucose levels in your bloodstream.

Diet and exercise are also key factors in controlling diabetes, in fact some doctors say that diet alone can control type 2 diabetes. The diabetic will be given dietary guidelines by their medical practitioner no matter what type of diabetes you have.

It is suggested that diabetics pay rigorous attention to their diet and self-monitoring activities to establish which foods cause the worst glucose-level peaks and troughs, then make "self adjustments".

However, the best way of controlling diabetes, and the only way for those with type 1 diabetes, is for patients to test their glucose levels regularly - as instructed by their doctor - and to take the appropriate levels of medication or injection of insulin.

Since a diabetics body either doesn't produce insulin, as in Type 1 diabetes, or cannot process the insulin that it makes, which is found in Type 2 diabetes, these blood sugar levels can vary much more then those of a person in perfect health.

Diabetics afflicted with type 1 diabetes should be checking their blood sugar levels daily before eating. The number of tests each day should a minimum of 2 times per day, but some patients may need as many as 6 tests in a day. These tests help determine how much insulin needs to be taken into the body to help process the glucose.

Type 2 diabetics are able to control their diabetes with drugs and dieting. However they too need to be monitoring their blood sugar levels a few times a week. This should be done immediately after eating a meal or up to 90 minutes after eating. In addition, it is a good idea to check your levels before every meal around one day a month to see exactly how your body interacts with the food that you eat.

To check your blood sugar levels, the most commonly used method of obtaining a blood sample is to prick the finger. You then take the blood that is released and put it onto a testing strip, which comes with blood sugar level testing kits. This strip is then put into a measuring device, and processed for around 30 seconds before a result is achieved.

But there is some good news!

Lots of research is on going and a new gadget is now available that checks a diabetic's blood sugar and lets them know if it falls to a dangerous low. Researchers have been searching for the gadget for years. Monitoring devices are now coming on the market and by late summer will be available in the United States.

These monitors are not as accurate as "normal" blood tests, finger lances, but researchers are hoping that within a couple of years it will allow a diabetic to forgo putting their finger to test for blood glucose levels. If the monitor signals that blood sugar levels are low, it is necessary to take a blood test for confirmation. The monitors are also slow to show rapid changes that occur, especially when you exercise. This monitor is working to make finger lances outdated for all diabetics.

Those who have used the monitors report little discomfort. A patch worn on the abdomen may hurt when it goes on because there is a tiny wire placed under the skin to measure the glucose in cell fluid. Once the patch is on, it is comfortable to wear and sends information to a receiver. The receiver is about the size of a cell phone. A patch can be worn for several days before changing.

Researchers are working toward pairing the new monitoring device to insulin pumps. These pumps have been on the market for years and could reduce the time needed for controlling diabetes to a minimum. One such product has already been approved in April and is now offered for sale now.

The monitoring portion of the device will not be available until later this summer, so it isn't fully automatic yet, but it is promising news for those who are trying to control Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

Another new treatment going through trials is the delivery of insulin through inhalation. The insulin is prepared in a dry micro fine powder form which is inhaled directly into the lungs from where it is absorbed into the blood stream.

And, of course, much more research is on going.
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