The Importance of Blood Glucose Testing
Testing your blood sugar levels is important, especially as the part of diabetes care. For this reason, it’s useful to know when and how to perform blood sugar testing.
Patients having diabetes usually self-test their blood glucose as an important tool in preventing possible complications and managing their diabetes treatment plan. Blood glucose tests are done using portable electronic devices that measures the levels of glucose in a small drop of blood. Why is it useful to self-test blood sugar levels? It gives you information to monitor the treatment, to judge how well the goals are being reached, to understand the effects of exercise and diet on blood glucose levels, as well as other factors such as stress and illness. Also, by self-monitoring blood sugar, patient is monitoring the effects of prescribed medications on his treatment. In case blood glucose levels are dangerously low or high according to blood sugar levels chart, one can identify it very quickly and to act appropriately.
Doctors usually advise their patients how often they should check blood glucose levels. Generally, the frequency of self-testing depends on the treatment plan and the type of diabetes certain patient has.
- In case of Type 1 Diabetes, self-testing is usually recommended three or more times daily. It should be performed before and/or after certain meals, exercise, bedtime etc. And, of course, in case of illness or using new medications or if a patient changes daily routine, additional self-testing should be performed.
- In case of Type 2 Diabetes, some patients take insulin to manage their health condition. Therefore, self-testing is recommended once or twice daily, depending on how many times the insulin is taken. Usually, testing is performed before meals, after 8 hours fasting etc. Patients who manage their type 2 diabetes without insulin, daily blood sugar testing may not be necessary.