Blood Glucose Testing Errors – 8 Tips on Avoiding Mistakes
We all make mistakes and you won’t be surprised to hear that people that test their blood glucose also make mistakes. We’ve compiled a list from other people’s experiences of the most common mistakes when testing your blood glucose which often result in error messages. After reading these errors hopefully you won’t make them!
1) Using out of date strips – test strips have expiry dates just like food and if you use test strips after their expiry date you may get an error message on your meter or worse a wrong reading without knowing it.
Make sure before testing that the test strips are in date.
2) Wrong test strips code – most test strips come with an individual code on the bottle/packaging. This code must match the code displayed on your glucose meter. If the codes don’t match you will get error messages.
To avoid this problem check every new box of test strips has the same code as shown on the glucose meter. If not, change the code on the meter.
3) Re-using a lancet – this is a common mistake. Re-using a lancet could affect the accuracy of your reading and could be very painful.
Every time you test your blood glucose, use a fresh new lancet.
4) Uncapped test strips – test strips need to be kept capped in their container. If the container is uncapped for too long then this can affect the accuracy of the test strips.
Always cap your strips after use. If you find a test strip container that was not closed properly or you’re not sure how long the strips had been uncapped for, then replace the test strips.
5) Poor storage conditions – test strips need to be stored in a dark, cool, dry place. If they are not, this can affect the accuracy of the strip. A bathroom or a window sill would not be good places to store test strips as bathrooms generally have a lot of water in the air and sunlight exposure on the window sill will degrade the strips.
6) Meter accuracy – the best way to check your meter is still accurate is to do a control check. Aim to do a control check at least every 3 months and perhaps each time you use a new box of test strips.
Always remember control solutions have a 3 month expiry, so after 3 months make sure you replace them. This applies to all control solutions from the one touch ultra control solution to the accu-chek aviva control solution. Click on the link to learn more about the control solutions.
7) Order of testing – some meters, such as the one touch ultra range, require you to put the strips into the meter first then place the blood sample onto the strip, other meters ask you to place the blood sample on the test strip first then place the strip into the meter.
Make sure you know which order your meter needs you to test with otherwise they will be an error message on your meter screen.
8) Meter units – glucose meters can measure in 2 units, mmol/l or mg/dl. Which units your meter measures in does not really matter as long as YOU know what units it measures. There are meters available which can measure in both mg/dl and mmol/l. The risk here is if you accidentally change the units and you do not realise there could be a huge difference in the actual readings.
Always look on your meter screen to see what units your reading is in. All meters will show you the units. Ideally, if you have meter which measures only in one unit it would be best.
All the meters at Glucosemeters4u.com measure only in one unit, mmol/l.
Hopefully, you can learn from these common mistakes and avoid them!
This article was brought to you by John Ngijseh from the Glucosemeters4u.com team
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Car Monitors For Your Vehicle
When choosing the right in car monitor, there are many, almost too many options to choose from. Aside from the overhead and flip down monitors, other types of car monitors available to consumers include: in-dash car monitors, headrest car monitors, sun visor car monitors and mirror car monitors.
Car monitors are those electronic devices used to display electronically anything from text, images or moving pictures. The screen size varies from model to another and screen types are LCD, LED, TFT. Usually DVD players also come attached with these roof-mounted vehicle audio and video systems with built-in stereo speaker, a user-friendly button navigation and on-screen menu system or remote controller for passengers convenience to make their long journey a enjoyable and pleasant experience. They can be attached to the center of your dashboard, attached to the cars ceiling or the back of the drivers seat are available to entertain passengers in the back seat. They are widely used today, they are primarily consisted of either an overhead or flip down car monitor in the time they firstly entered the market. Car monitors are mainly used for the parents who take long trips in the family minivan with their children.
Car monitors can be mounted in nearly any vehicle. Some of them look like a TV that drops down from the ceiling of the vehicle, others are flip down car monitors which come with integrated DVD players for all-in-one solution, some have integrated wireless headphone transmitters. Some units have integrated dome lights. Car TV that mounts in your headrest, allowing each user to view their own video, or play a video game, independent from other passengers. Replacement headrest with monitors factory installed, allow video in a leased car without making modifications to the vehicle, fully motorized in dash monitors offer in dash solutions that neatly retract automatically with the press of a button. A dash mounted TV allowed you to watch a movie while your car is parked. GPS navigation systems work perfect with in dash monitor. Some units offer the convenience of an integrated DVD player and have MP3 capabilities.
Most people install car monitors as entertainment systems for their vehicles, but they can also be used for practical purpose. Most car monitors have the ability to be hooked up to GPS systems to display navigational information. Depending on the system, some car even be configured to operate using touch screen or voice commands to access the system. In addition, car monitors can also be configured to work with rearview cameras that can help a driver see when the car is in reverse. Finally, since these systems are becoming more main stream, many second hand car buyers are looking for these systems to be installed, making the resale value of the car higher.
Car monitors are simply the best and more practical option, you could probably fit these universal car monitors yourself, in fact you can remove your old monitor and replace with the standard color range of universal car monitor from black to beige to grey.
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Medical Alert Bracelets For Diabetics
If you or someone you love has diabetes, getting a diabetic medical alert bracelet is imperative. Because of the nature of the condition, diabetics can have medical emergencies at any time. If they’re not with someone who knows their medical condition’s specifics, medicinal mistakes could be made. To be proactive about diabetic care, investing in a diabetic medical alert bracelet is a good idea.
Diabetes is such a tricky disease; one never knows when they may need medical attention. Due to the nature of the disease, fainting or passing out is not uncommon. When being revived by paramedics, its important for them to know that you are diabetic and require specialized care.
Diabetic medical alert bracelets can come in plain metal, or with stylish beads and metal charms. Due to the large number of diabetics, especially in the United States, a wide selection of styles is available so that people can choose a style that suits them best.
Medical alert bracelets are growing in popularity as an easy way to always have medical care information available. These bracelets, when worn, always give important information to those who need it most in times when it is needed most. The bracelets can be engraved with diabetic information to relay it to paramedics if they ever need to respond to a persons medical emergency.
According to MedicAlert, there are 18.2 million people in the United States alone or 6.3 percent of the population — who have diabetes. While an estimated 13 million have been diagnosed, there are still 5.2 million people who are unaware that they have the disease. Therefore, its good for the people who know they have diabetes to get a diabetic medical alert bracelet. Its a proactive step towards taking care of ones personal health, especially with a condition that is sometimes unpredictable. Owning a diabetic medical alert bracelet is vital for anyone afflicted by this growing disease.
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Test Blood Glucose Levels Regularly to Ensure They Are Stable
Simply put blood glucose level is the amount of glucose or sugar in the blood of any mammal. It is also called as plasma glucose level. Blood glucose level is expressed as millimoles per liter (mmol/l). A person suffering from diabetes has blood glucose levels that are beyond the normal limits. Normally the glucose level stays within narrow limits throughout the day ranging from 4 to 8mmol/l. The level is higher after meals and usually lowest in the mornings before the first meal is taken.
The blood glucose level is tightly regulated in the human body as part of the metabolic homeostasis. Usually the total amount of glucose circulating in the human blood is about 3.3 to 7g assuming that the blood volume is normal (5 liters blood in an average adult male). Glucose is the primary source of energy for the functions of body’s cells. It is transported via the bloodstream from intestines or liver to body cells. Failure to maintain the level of glucose in the normal range leads to conditions of persistently low (hypoglycemia) or high (hyperglycemia) blood sugar. Stable blood glucose levels are highly important. A person with diabetes often has sugar levels beyond the normal range. Glucose levels higher than the range may lead to late stage complications like neuropathy, retinopathy, nephropathy, cerebrovascular disease and cardiovascular diseases.
Tests to Measure blood glucose levels:
There are different types of blood glucose tests that can be undertaken. The ones commonly used are fasting blood sugar (FBS) which involves measuring levels after you have not eaten for at least 8 hours. This is the first test commonly done to check for diabetes. You can also take 2-hour postprandial blood sugar test that involves checking sugar level exactly 2 hours after you eat a meal. Random blood sugar (RBS) test measures glucose regardless of when you had your last meal. Blood sugar levels in healthy people do not vary widely throughout the day and any variance indicates a problem. The Oral glucose tolerance test is used to diagnose pre-diabetes and diabetes. This test is commonly undertaken to test for gestational diabetes.
Another test that can help you find blood sugar level over a period of time is known as the HbA1c test which shows the average blood sugar level over the previous six to eight weeks. HbA1c is a compound that is produced when chemical reaction between hemoglobin and glucose takes place. This is called as glycated hemoglobin. HbA1c levels rise only when there is consistent high blood sugar level. It is 6% of total hemoglobin for people without diabetes and 7.5% with patients with only a fair control of diabetes. If HbA1c is above 8.5% shows very poor control of diabetes.
Levels of blood sugar:
Blood glucose test measures the sugar levels in your blood. The normal levels for fasting blood glucose test are 70-99 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or less than 5.5mmol/L. For the postprandial test they are 70- 145 mg/dL or less than 7.9mmol/L and between 70 – 125 mg/dL i.e. less than 7.0mmol/L for the Random test. Normal results may vary a little bit from lab to lab. The higher values that would often be used to find whether you have diabetes may be from multiple types of tests on two different days. Fasting levels more than 126 mg/dL (7.0mmol/L) or more are high levels. Similarly another test like oral glucose tolerance test may give result of 200mg/dL (11.1mmol/L) or more. These test done on two different days and showing higher level with other symptoms of diabetes, are either due to diabetes or may sometimes be the result of severe stress, stroke, heart attack or excess production of growth hormone. Fasting levels below 40mg/dL (2.2mmol/L) in women and 50mg/dL among men are considered as low values and may be caused due Addison’s disease, hypothyroidism, liver diseases, kidney failure or malnutrition.
With several types of test available to measure your blood glucose levels you can very well control it if you are a diabetic. Knowing these levels is preferable as it keeps on your toes so that you take efforts to have better health.
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This article is submitted by Ola Martinsson, who just recently got the diagnosis diabetes. Trying to read and understand as much as possible. Found an interesting site at http://adviceondiabetes.com with an free ebook with more than 500 diabetes recepies
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