According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the high blood glucose level is a significant health concern in the USA, affecting over 10.5 % of the population. Consistently high blood sugar can signify prediabetes and diabetes and may lead to organ failures without diagnosis and medical treatment. Types 1 and 2 diabetes, as well as gestational diabetes, are the most common forms of the disease. Depending on the prognosis, managing diabetic conditions can include regular blood sugar monitoring, lifestyle adjustments, and medical supervision.
Diabetes: Symptoms and Risk Factors
The symptoms of diabetes can vary depending on the type of diabetes and the severity of the condition. Some common symptoms of diabetes include:
- Frequent urge to urinate
- Feeling tired
- Increased thrust
- Blurred vision
- Slow healing of cuts and wounds
- Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet
- Unexpected weight loss
- Hunger pangs
- Dizzy spells
Risk factors for diabetes include:
- Family history of diabetes
- Inactive lifestyle
- High blood pressure and cholesterol levels
- People over 35
- A history of gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy)
- Being from specific ethnic backgrounds (African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, Asian American, or Pacific Islander)
- Having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Having a history of prediabetes
It's important to note that not all people with diabetes will have symptoms, and some people may have diabetes without being aware of it. That's why it is recommended to get screened for diabetes if you have any of the risk factors.
Prevention and Managing Diabetes
Health practitioners can analyze individual conditions and recommend different tests for individuals depending on their age, risk factors, family history, and other characteristics before recommending a feasible diabetes management and treatment plan. Doctors can also suggest adopting an active lifestyle for weight loss if overweight, lower-calorie food, and regular blood sugar monitoring for those diagnosed with prediabetes to prevent Type 2 diabetes.
Through consistent self-care, diabetic patients may keep their diabetes under control and enjoy a long and healthy life. Diabetes can have far-reaching effects on the body. As a result, it's essential to monitor blood sugar levels, commonly known as blood glucose. Health complications from diabetes are avoidable if you monitor your blood sugar levels, cholesterol, and blood pressure.
It is possible to lessen or avoid diabetes's long-term complications by maintaining target levels of A1C, blood pressure, and cholesterol and by giving up smoking. Diseases like heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, nerve damage, and eye disease are included in this category. You should bring this with you to all doctor's appointments. Discuss your progress toward your goals and any adjustments to your diabetes management strategy that may be in order.
Many people with diabetes live happily by following the treatment program, medications, and regular blood sugar and cholesterol monitoring at home. A doctor can recommend a few diabetes management accessories like a blood glucose monitor device, test strips, and other diabetes management medical supplies for managing diabetes at home.
What Diabetes Management Supplies and Devices Do I Need?
The diabetes management supplies and devices you may need depend on your type of diabetes and treatment plan. Some standard diabetic management supplies include:
- Blood glucose meter and test strips for monitoring blood sugar levels
- Insulin pumps or syringes and needles for administering insulin
- Continuous glucose monitor (CGM) for constant monitoring of blood sugar levels
- Lancets for pricking the skin to obtain a blood sample for testing
- Insulin vials or pens for storing and administering insulin
- Glucagon emergency kit in case of severe low blood sugar
- Carbohydrate counting book or app to help you plan meals
- A storage case to keep all your supplies organized
It's always best to talk with your healthcare provider to determine what supplies and devices are right for you. However, one diabetic management supply that is most recommended for patients with diabetes is a blood sugar monitoring device.
Regular blood glucose level monitoring is essential for people with diabetes because it helps them to manage their blood sugar levels effectively. This is crucial because high or low blood sugar levels can cause serious health complications.
- Monitoring blood sugar levels allows individuals to:
- Adjust their insulin doses or oral medications as needed
- Make adjustments to their diet and exercise routine
- Identify patterns and trends in their blood sugar levels
- Detect and respond to potential complications early
- Track the effectiveness of their treatment plan
Additionally, monitoring blood sugar levels allows healthcare providers to adjust treatment plans and ensure that the individual is on track to achieve their target blood sugar levels. This helps individuals to maintain good overall health and avoid long-term complications of diabetes, such as heart disease, stroke, nerve damage, kidney damage, blindness, and amputations.
How to find diabetic medical supplies online?
There are several ways to find diabetic medical supplies online, including:
Online retailers: Many online retailers offer various diabetic medical supplies, including blood glucose meters, test strips, insulin pumps, and continuous glucose monitors.
Online pharmacies: Online pharmacies such as Walgreens and CVS have diabetes supplies available for purchase, and you can also have your prescription refilled and delivered to you.
Manufacturer websites: Some manufacturers of diabetic medical supplies have websites where you can purchase their products directly. For example, companies like McKesson, Prodigy, and others have their websites.
Medical supply companies: Many medical supply companies such as American Hospital Supply (AHS), specialize in diabetic supplies. These companies often have a wide selection of products and may offer discounted prices. For example, AHS Diabetes Management and Supplies include essential products for clean, safe, and adequate blood draws and infusions. In addition, it carries trusted brands of test strips, lancets, and glucose monitors, such as Prodigy Diabetes Care.
It's important to note that when ordering online, you should ensure that the website you are ordering from is legitimate, that the products are genuine, and that you check for any possible shipping cost, return policy, and warranty that comes with the product.
Types of Diabetic Management Supplies
The following are examples of the various diabetic supplies available to those with types 1 and 2.
Glucose Monitors: A glucose monitor, also known as a glucose meter or blood glucose meter, is a device that measures the amount of glucose (sugar) in a person's blood. It is an essential tool for people with diabetes to monitor their blood sugar levels and manage their condition. Glucose monitors use a small drop of blood obtained by pricking the skin with a lancet placed on a test strip. The test strip is then inserted into the glucose meter, which uses a chemical reaction to measure the glucose level in the blood sample. The glucose level is then displayed on a screen, usually in mg/dL or mmol/L.
For example, Prodigy Blood Glucose Meter is an affordable device providing results in seven seconds and can store up to 450 results.
Blood Glucose Control Solution: A blood glucose control solution, also known as a control or calibration solution, is a liquid solution containing a known amount of glucose. It is used to test the accuracy of a blood glucose meter. It's important to note that control solutions should not be used as a substitute for blood glucose testing and should be used in conjunction with regular blood glucose testing to ensure accurate results.
For instance, the McKesson Quintet AC Blood Glucose Meter has auto-coding that allows it to calibrate with the company's own Quintet ACTM blood glucose test strips. In addition, the product has a huge memory capacity, requires a small sample size, and has a backlit LCD screen for easier reading.
Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) Transmitter: A Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) transmitter is a device used in conjunction with a CGM sensor to continuously measure and transmit glucose levels to a receiver or mobile device. The CGM system can be a helpful tool for people with diabetes, as it allows them to continuously monitor their glucose levels throughout the day and night and adjust their insulin doses or glucose levels as needed. It also helps healthcare providers evaluate treatment plans' effectiveness and make adjustments as needed.
For instance, a more discrete and lightweight solution for CGM is the Dexcom G6 Transmitter. This transmitter, in conjunction with the Dexcom G6 Sensor, eliminates the necessity for pricking fingers or injecting insulin. Every five minutes, instead, it will send a wireless message containing your current glucose reading.
Blood Glucose Test Strips: Blood glucose test strips are small, disposable strips of plastic that are used with a blood glucose meter to measure the amount of glucose (sugar) in a person's blood. They are essential to managing diabetes, as they allow individuals to monitor their blood sugar levels and adjust their treatment plans as needed.
For instance, Prodigy's Blood Glucose Test Strips come in 50 a box, making them a cost-effective and convenient solution for diabetic management supplies.