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You have diabetes. This means your body has trouble using a sugar called glucose. To help manage your diabetes, you’ll need to check your blood sugar level as directed by your health care provider. Keeping a log of your blood sugar levels will help you track your blood sugar readings. It’s a simple and easy way to see how well you are controlling your diabetes.
You can check your blood sugar level with a blood glucose meter. You’ll first use a tiny lancet to draw a tiny drop of blood from the side of a finger. You may also be able to test on the arm or the bottom of the thumb. The blood is placed on a small strip that goes into the meter. The meter then supplies a reading that tells you the level of your blood sugar. Your readings should be in your target range as often as possible. This means not too high or too low. Staying in this range helps reduce your risk of complications. Your doctor will help you figure out your ideal target range.
Every time you check your blood sugar, use your log to keep track of your readings. You may be advised by your doctor to check your blood sugar in the morning, at bedtime, and before and after meals. Be sure to write down ALL of your numbers. Also, use your log to record things that might have affected your blood sugar. Some examples include being sick, being physically active, feeling stressed, or skipping meals.
Tracking your blood sugar readings helps you identify patterns. These patterns tell you how your actions affect your blood sugar. For instance, you may have higher numbers after eating certain foods or lower numbers after exercise. Keep in mind that there are no “good” or “bad” numbers. They just help you understand how to stay in your target range more often, so that your diabetes remains in good control.
Bring your blood sugar log with you to all of your health care appointments. It can help your doctor and other members of your healthcare team make adjustments to your treatment plan, if needed. This may involve making changes in what you eat, what medications you take, or how much you exercise.
The resources below can help you learm more:
American Diabetes Association 800-342-2383 www.diabetes.org
Lighthouse International 800-829-0500 www.lighthouse.org
National Eye Institute 301-496-5248 www.nei.nih.gov
Hormone Health Network 800-467-6663 www.hormone.org