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Glucose (Blood Sugar) Monitoring

Checking your blood glucose levels helps to ensure they remain within a healthy target range.  High blood sugars can cause serious damage to the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, feet and eyes over time.  Low blood sugars impair the ability to think and function normally.  It's important to keep track of your blood glucose levels both over time (A1C testing) as well as specific times throughout the day (meter testing).    

A1c Testing

The hemoglobin A1c test measures the average blood glucose level over the past three months (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) and is different from blood glucose checks performed each day with a meter.  The A1c goal for most people with diabetes is less than 7%, which is an estimated average glucose of 154 mg/dL.  It varies by individual.  Your care team determines your A1c goal as well as your daily target goal.  The American Diabetes Association recommends at least two A1c tests per year (at a minimum) in addition to daily blood glucose monitoring.

Blood Glucose (Blood Sugar) Meter Testing

Blood glucose monitoring using a meter is the best tool to check your diabetes control.  It shows your blood glucose level at any given time.  Discuss with your care team how often you should be checking your blood glucose. 

Checking Blood Sugar Throughout the Day 

Testing glucose levels at the same time each day allows you to track patterns.  For people who receive multiple daily insulin injections or use an insulin pump, it's generally recommended to test before meals and snacks, occasionally two hours after the first bite of a meal, at bedtime, prior to exercising, when low glucose is suspected, after treating a low and prior to critical tasks such as driving.

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Glucose)

Hypoglycemia is defined by less than normal blood glucose (usually below 70 milligrams).  Symptoms include excessive hunger, shakiness, sweating, dizziness, feeling light headed, pale skin and/or feeling confused.  If left untreated, hypoglycemia can lead to unconsciousness.

Hyperglycemia (High Blood Glucose)

Hyperglycemia is defined by above normal blood glucose.  Symptoms include excessive thirst and/or urination.

Recording Blood Glucose Results is Vital

Testing your blood glucose on a regular basis is an integral part of diabetes self-management because it puts you in charge.  Whether utilizing a smartphone app or a paper log, recording and sharing your glucose numbers with your care team provides them with an overall picture of your body's response to your diabetes care plan.  Download our printable blood glucose logs in English or Spanish. 


Download Here to monitor your blood sugars and share the results with your care team.


Descargar aquí en español


Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs)

Continuous Glucose Monitor for Blood Glucose Management

CGMs can be a lifesaving device for people with diabetes. The latest systems are even integrated with Smartphones.  

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