People with diabetes are asked to check their blood sugar levels during the day. The common way of doing this is the finger-stick test, where you poke the finger. But you can also use a Continuous Glucose Monitor, or CGM, which is easy to use and does not involve regular finger-sticks.

A man with a CGM having a business call

Why you would benefit from using a CGM

A CGM is put on your skin, like the back of your arm.  It lets you see your sugar all through the day and gives you your numbers every 5-15 minutes. A blood sugar meter only shows what your sugar is at the exact time you poke your finger.  CGM can help you keep your numbers more in target which can help with your health long-term.

For people that don’t like poking their fingers all the time

Checking your blood sugar with a meter can be hard and painful, and some people do not like to poke their fingers. A CGM may be handier than a glucose meter. 

Finger-sticks blood tests can be awkward. But with a CGM, you won’t need to poke your finger all the time. Using a CGM may not completely stop the need for finger-sticks but it can significantly reduce how many times you have to do it.

You can worry less about your blood sugar and focus on your day

Thanks to always being able to see what your sugar is, and how it is changing, you do not have to worry as much. You can spend more time living your life. If things do come up, your CGM can even alert you and you can respond quickly, thanks to its alarm system.

For people who regularly use blood glucose meters

Even if you do not mind poking your finger, a CGM can give you more facts than finger-sticks can, which may save you time and help you control your health better.

Your data can be recorded

CGMs have an app that can be downloaded on a phone, tablet, or laptop so you and your doctor can see your numbers. This not only helps you each day, but when you look back you might be able to see patterns that are there. By doing this, you may be able to stop a problem before it happens. 

You can respond faster and even prevent issues

Certain types of CGMs have features that allow you to set levels to warn you when your sugar is too high or too low, or is heading that way. Alarms like these can help you notice these highs and lows faster and may even help you prevent your sugar from getting out of target. 

CGMs can also help to see where pills or insulin doses may need to be changed. By looking at the charts generated from your CGM, doctors can see much more than just from fingersticks. This can be extra helpful when used by people who do not always feel the symptoms of highs and lows or cannot say how they are feeling, such as with children. 

CGM lets you set your targets

Not everyone responds the same way to diabetes. That being said, a CGM can help you and your doctor make a treatment plan that works for you using the CGM results. And since CGMs provide you with real-time data, you can make these changes more quickly because you have more correct information.

These choices also affect other parts of your health, such as your diet, exercise, and insulin needs. Some people who use CGMs start to become more active and fit due to the changes they can now add to their life because they can see right away what is happening with their sugars.

Change can be made easier by the CGM

As part of the lifestyle changes made easier by CGM, people who use CGM often feel very good about how in-target their sugars are.  Research has shown that while some changes are small, they can become a big part of being healthy.

Using a CGM can allow you to better manage your health without always having to take out a meter. With a CGM, you only need to check readings on the device. Having a CGM can also warn of low or high blood sugar even before symptoms start to set in.

A little girl checking her blood glucose level using CGM

Using a CGM can work for type 1 and type 2 diabetes

While many people think a CGM is only for type 1 diabetes, it can also be useful for those with type 2 diabetes. According to research, people with type 2 diabetes who use a CGM can better manage their sugars through steady lifestyle changes in their diet and exercise. It has also been found that these people may have a lower risk of having low sugars.

The way a CGM works may also be a game changer for many people struggling with diabetes in these ways:

  • It can help figure out the right dose of insulin and other medications.
  • It can help you manage your diet and exercise better.
  • It can help you track your sugar levels between meals.

CGM technology may be the key to helping researchers build an artificial pancreas. This system can help mimic the body’s natural process of using insulin, which is one of the hardest things in type 1 diabetes.

Studies have also shown that CGM users with type 2 diabetes are likely to avoid other problems from diabetes. Their use of the device, along with healthy changes in lifestyle, was also shown to possibly decrease the use of expensive medications.

Talk to your doctor before getting a CGM

Since CGMs need a prescription to be covered by insurance, you need to talk to your doctor before buying a CGM. You may also have to check with your insurance provider to see how well they cover them. Better Health can handle the paperwork with your doctor and check your insurance to ensure you’re covered and never overpay. Call Better Health at 415-475-8444 today.

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