Monitoring your blood sugar levels is important in the management of type 2 diabetes. If you know how high your blood sugar is, you will be able to take appropriate actions to reduce, maintain, or increase the glucose in your bloodstream. Now that you have established the significance of keeping your sugar levels in check, the next question is how often you should monitor your blood glucose levels.
According to the American Diabetes Association, you should check your blood glucose levels at least three times per day, especially if you need to administer insulin injections. However, this is only a general figure. In reality, there are several factors that will determine how often you should check your blood sugar levels:
- Drugs – It is already a given that you should monitor your blood sugar if you are taking insulin injections daily. However, if you are taking other maintenance medications, you need to ask your doctor whether any of them have effects on your blood sugar levels. There are some drugs that cause low blood sugar, so this means that you need to take your blood sugar levels more often.
- Changes in treatment regimen – Any change that you do that has an effect in your condition should also signal an increase in the frequency of monitoring your blood sugar levels. For example, if you have been started on a new medication, you should check if it has any effect on your glucose levels. If you also change your diet or you started on a new exercise regimen, you should increase how often you check your blood sugar levels.
- Exacerbation of symptoms – Diabetes is a chronic disease, so it has its symptomatic and asymptomatic periods. If you had just experienced symptoms of type 2 diabetes, this should signal you to increase the frequency of checking your sugar levels until the time that your blood sugar becomes stabilized. Before meals, your sugar levels should be between 70 to 130 mg/dl, while it should not exceed 180 mg/dl after eating. If your sugar reaches around 320 mg/dl and above, you should already keep on monitoring your sugar level.
The best time to check your blood glucose levels is before and after meals, and also before you sleep at night. You can also check during the night and also if you are fasting to avoid hypoglycemia. Aside from the aforementioned factors, it is also essential to take into consideration what you can afford. If you are monitoring your glucose levels at home, you have to buy your own glucose test strips, which costs pretty high for something that can only be used once and several times a day. That is why maintenance of your treatment regimen is of utmost importance, because treating and managing diabetes is no ordinary feat. You have to invest on buying a reliable glucometer with multiple test strips.
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