There's so much to know if you manage diabetes. But, once you learn, much of the tedious details become second nature. Let's take the guesswork out of blood sugar testing. Here's how to check your blood sugar.
All Diathrive glucose meters come with instructions on how to perform a blood sugar check. Each meter's product detail webpage on our website contains a link to that meter's instruction manual. Here we will talk about what is in the instruction manuals, but we also like to share some tips that you won't see in them.
Basics: How to use your meter
- Wash your hands with soap and water, and dry thoroughly with a clean towel.
- Insert a test strip into the strip port, contact bars first, facing up.
- When you see the test strip and drop icon on your screen, the meter is ready for blood to be applied.
- Using a fresh lancet, lance your fingertip (on the side is best) and gently massage your finger from the base to the tip to obtain a small drop of blood.
- Apply the blood drop to the tip of the test strip. If you don't get enough blood to fill the sample chamber on your first time, you have 3 seconds to massage a little more blood out and reapply.
- Watch the countdown on your meter screen. Your blood glucose reading will display when complete.
People with experience managing diabetes know these basics. If you do not, spend some time with the user manual to make sure your process is allowing for accuracy. Once you are comfortable with the basics, here are some additional tips and details to consider for best results.
Don't Forget About Gravity
Your heart circulates your blood around your body, but gravity also affects blood flow. Remember how a headstand will cause all your blood to rush to your head? The same is true of your fingers when you check your blood sugar. You will get more blood from your fingertip if you let your hand and arm hang down for a few minutes before and during your blood sugar testing procedure.
Change Your Lancet After Every Blood Sugar Check
Diathrive will send you as many lancets as you need to change your lancet every time you test. You can't see it with the naked eye, but every time you lance your fingers, the lancet bends a little and gradually becomes a little fish hook. It will hurt more and may draw less blood. Learn more about lancets.
Finding the best depth setting and applying the right amount of pressure when you push that button can take a little time to figure out. If you are feeling too much pain or struggling to get enough blood, make small adjustments until it feels right. You may want to try adjusting the lancing device first. Most lancing devices have at least five settings. Usually the higher the setting number the deeper the needle will go when you fire the lancet.
If you want to give your fingertips a rest, consider alternate site testing. Our meters are approved to read blood drawn from other areas, such as forearm and palms. These areas have fewer nerve endings than your fingertips. If you choose to try these areas, our lancing device has a clear attachment with a wider opening for you to use. Be sure to use it for alternate testing sites.
Remember that most modern meters require far less blood than older meters. Most meters will beep when they have sufficient blood to perform the blood glucose test, so try to draw a little more blood than you need to ensure good, full contact and avoid error codes. Do not apply the blood until you hear the beep or see the strip/blood icon appear.
Getting Better Blood Sugar Accuracy
Have you ever checked your blood sugar and been surprised, or even suspicious of the result? Here are some tips for getting more accurate blood sugar readings.