The best way to keep track of your health is probably through consistent monitoring coupled with corrective measures. One of these conditions that require regular checks is diabetes. The best innovation that used to monitor the blood sugar levels is the glucometer. This gadget is simply a glucose-measuring instrument and its main purpose is to determine the concentration of glucose or sugar levels in the blood. Using the design principles, the meter assesses a small sample of blood. Then it gives out a numeric value for the glucose content which can be evaluated against the expected values. Having a glucometer in the house is therefore critical especially for individuals who have been diagnosed with any type of diabetes in order to facilitate corrective action depending on the findings of the analysis.
The meter was developed in the early 60s by American scientists in an effort to get well ahead of the disease and give patients a fighting chance. The use of domestic glucometers has since been found to improve management of diabetes While the initial meters were simply composed of strips that would simply change color, further, improvement has enabled precise indications that can actually quantify digitally the sugar levels in any blood sample. To ensure the quality of the meters, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has a set of regulations that regulate the device’s accuracy levels which is in the ±15% range of tolerance. Of course, the efficiency and accuracy go way beyond design features and can be compromised by conditions such as blood constituents and general cleanliness of the device.
Types of Diabetes
Diabetes itself is a condition whereby the body fails to produce enough insulin or inefficiently resulting in an inability to extract the blood sugar and utilize it accordingly for body energy provisions, subsequently resulting in high concentrations of glucose in the blood. The disease comes in several variations which are unique as per their symptoms and occurrence;
Type 1 Diabetes
The condition whereby the immune system perceives the cells that produce vital insulin as foreign bodies or harmful elements and hence attacks and destroys them. Once these cells are destroyed, the body is left without any source of insulin and can therefore no longer process sugar. The reason for the onset of this condition remains a mystery to scientists however it is believed to be triggered by environmental conditions. Type 1 diabetes is usually easier to diagnose compared to other types due to its unique and drastic symptoms such as sudden weight loss. This type afflicts mainly the younger generations.
Type 2 diabetes
This variety results from a body’s inability to utilize the insulin produced from the beta cells. The organ responsible for the production of the insulin, the pancreas, will, therefore, overwork in an effort to cover up for the body’s inefficiency and hence end up ‘exhausted’ and producing less than enough of the insulin. This will once again lead to high sugar levels in the blood. While the causes of this type of diabetes also remains a mystery, it is believed to be genetic and more common in obese individuals or people who do not partake in regular exercise.
Type 2 diabetes has a few unique symptoms such as dark patches in the softer regions of the body such as the neck coupled by an abnormal feeling in the feet that gives a numbing sensation although the condition is way more complicated to identify without proper testing. It is also more common in the elderly demography approaching their 50s.
This type of diabetes is found in pregnant women and is caused by hormones produced during this condition which unfortunately blocks the insulin produced by the pancreases from performing its duties.
General Symptoms of Diabetes
There are several indicators of diabetes common throughout all the types of the condition. These include;
- Impaired or diminished vision outside of the normal or regular vision experienced by the patient.
- An uncharacteristic and repetitive urination urge.
- An inexplicable feeling of fatigue or disorientation.
- Feeling sudden and intense thirstiness or hunger.
- A suddenly irate or dry skin, usually accompanied by wounds that seem to take longer to heal.
The progression of diabetes can lead to more serious health complications such as sight challenges, skin conditions and damage to the kidney as well as possible loss of limbs. The disease is combatted by rigorous monitoring and the use of insulin to assist the body in processing its sugar. General fitness is also essential in promoting the body to process its insulin better.
How to use the Glucometer?
The glucometer conveniently provides instant analysis of blood sugar levels at home which is quite convenient especially when determining whether the symptoms being experienced are linked to diabetic tendencies. It is also essential to record the results in order to have a traceable history that can highlight patterns.
The regular meters come with handy operational instructions and should, therefore, be simple to use but generally one needs a cleaning agent like alcohol supplements, the strip, lancet and of course the notebook for record tracking.
After making sure everything is clean, simply select a region on the body for extracting the blood sample, commonly the fingertips. Switch on the device and insert the test strip and wait for the machine to prompt for the blood sample.
Once prompted, prick the finger (or wherever desired or directed) and let the blood get in contact with the strip. The type and degree of contact is usually specified for each machine depending on the design. The meter should give a reading within a short while. Make sure you clean up the pricked point to avoid infection and if the bleeding doesn’t stop immediately, cover up the wound.
Types of Glucometers
Glucometers come in several types. The generic ones require a prick on the finger to obtain the blood sample for evaluation. Below are the main glucometers categories in use or under development.
The Self-Monitoring Types
The best glucometers are self-monitoring. They can provide a reading within a few seconds using detectors that work with the strip to give very accurate readings at the initiation of the patient either on a regular schedule or when suspecting diabetic symptoms.
The Continuous Monitoring Types
This type is a permanent or semi-permanent fixture to the body of the patient and it provides the continuous evaluation as suggested by the name. The glucometer actually implanted just under the skin of the stomach region. It’s a more extensive type of monitoring to evaluate an individual’s patterns of sugar levels.
The Non-invasive Types
These meters are still under development but the principle is to avoid the use of blood to test sugar levels which would be a welcome relief for patients from the pricking and constant blood handling.
Buyer’s guide to Glucometers
The best meter should provide accurate readings in a timely manner to avoid prolonged processes since it involves blood. Sufficient supplements must be available to smoothen the process such as alcohol swabs and cost-effective strips yet at the same time without a quality compromise. The best glucometers must provide alternative power sources such as rechargeable batteries or solar provisions to promote portability and usage versatility.
Top Glucometer Features: Pros & Cons
While there are lots of products on the market, below is a list of some of the best devices and supplies that can cater for domestic needs in an efficient and reliable manner.
1. Dr. Morepen BG-03 Gluco One Glucometer
- Quick Results in 5 Secs.
- 0.5uL blood sample is enough
- Auto code monitoring.
- Large Memory with Life time Warranty.
- This product comes with 50 Strips of either black or white color.
- While the strips only intended for single-use, they provide quite effective testing abilities destined to give accurate results on the glucometer.
- The strips also require quite minimal blood samples in order to work as well as no coding at all.
2. OneTouch Select Plus Simple Glucometer
- The OneTouch strips offer top-quality testing equipment, evidenced by the thousands of user reviews across the globe.
- Its very simple to use, no setup required, no coding.
- Only 1ul blood is enough for test
- Easy to understand test results with audio signals
- The strips require a very minimal blood sample for testing. Helps to test sugar levels in Blood
- Also provides sufficient soaking abilities which promote accurate readings on the glucometer.
- The strips are however for once-off use and should never be re-used again otherwise they may yield false or misleading results.
- They ideally provide the best results when used with the same brand’s glucometer.
3. Dr. Trust USA Blood sugar Testing Glucometer with Test Strips
- It works in 3 modes
1. General Mode: Blood can be taken at any time of the day
2. AC Mode: Blood can be taken in the early morning on an empty stomach
3. PC Mode: Take the blood after having meals.
- It has a smiley indicator happy smiley indicates good health & Sad smiley indicates bad health.
- Also comes with a Remainder alarm to take measurements from time to time.
- This product comes with 50 top quality test strips as well as a convenient lancet set.
- The strips specially designed to work with minimum sample blood and the lancets provide the sufficient sample with a minimized prick.
- Despite being for a once-off use, the strips require no coding at all to generate results.
4. Accu-Chek Active Blood Glucose Monitoring Meter Kit
- The Accu-Chek kit comes with 10multi colored strip uniquely designed for the best reading minimized of errors yet utilizing the barest minimum blood sample and a non-coded operation.
- The strips come in a contamination-free pack provides top-notch contamination prevention and marginalizes any risk of infection.
- During the process is handled correctly as instructed on the kit label.
5. BeatO Glucometer Sugar Testing Machine
- This glucometer is an ultimate selection for determining blood sugar levels.
- The device utilizes top of the range technology to accurately detect the glucose levels.
- It also gives off a digital display value with minimal errors, clinical accuracy and very marginal fluctuation between successive readings.
- The glucometer comes with 10 Strips designed to operate with a minimum blood sample without any compromises on the result.
- The device is both lightweight and efficient and it comes with an impressive 5-year warranty.
- The developers also ensured compatibility with the BeatO App for convenience as well as availed an integrated auto alert system that can interpret the results for the amateur users.
6. Apollo Sugar Glucome Glucometer
- This device is another classic innovation. It provides efficient and accurate readings of blood sugar levels in a very short space of time.
- The device is very portable and comes with replaceable batteries that make its usage convenient and reliable at all times.
- The Apollo glucometer designed to sense sugar levels from a very minimal blood sample using the test strips.
- The pack comes with 25 assorted strips for a diabetes test.
- The accompanying user manual gives very simple and clear instructions on usage and operation without any medical staff at all.
- The Glucometer device itself comes in a clinical white color enhances hygienic practices.
- A wireless facility even communicates the data recorded to selected medical facilities for evaluations, record keeping or assistance services.
7. Contour Plus One Blood Glucose Monitoring System Glucometer
- This digital glucometer is pretty accurate and reliable for domestic use.
- It features top of the range detection technology that can produce timeous results with very minimal error tolerances.
- The device is quite user-friendly and comes with a set of clear-cut instructions easily deciphered by end-users.
- The pack comes with 25 Free Strips of various colors which facilitate the reading using very minimal blood samples in a once-off use setting.
- The Contour glucometer designed to meet all regulations and conforms to the error tolerance range.
- Contour Plus glucometer ensures reliable evaluation of sugar levels every time.
- It also offers other impressive features such as an alert system for abnormal readings. Also, reminder settings to make evaluations or set up appointments with medical personnel or facilities.
- The memory feature can take up to 800 readings which makes history tracking much easier.
8. Smart Care Blood Glucometer with Test Strips
- The Smart Care supplementary test strips come in a 25 strip pack to test sugar levels.
- The Smart care glucometer provides reliable testing features using a very small blood sample which still retains the highly accurate results from the glucometer.
- The strips conveniently packed to avoid any undesirable contamination and they promote quite time-efficient readings.
- The strips also deemed to perform better with their same brand glucometer.
9. ContourPlus Blood Glucose Monitoring System Glucometer
- This top-quality glucometer designed to obtain accurate results from a very small blood sample in a very short space of time.
- 0.6µl blood sample is enough
- Used for capillary or venous whole blood
- The high tech device utilizes the latest detection technology with minimal errors well within the tolerance ranges.
- The device also features a convenient alert system for any anomalies that may require further medical attention.
- The pack comes with 25 Free Strips multi-colored for convenience and requires absolutely no coding to operate.
- The ContourPlus glucometer can operate with capillary or venous whole blood depending on the convenience of the individual.
10. Accusure Simple Glucometer
- This modern glucometer offers the best technology for blood sugar levels detection and quantification on a convenient digital display.
- The device comes with 25 Test Strips of various colors and utilizes a very minimal blood sample without at all compromising the results.
- The product well-reviewed and a thoroughly tried and tested solution to home health devices.
11. JSB GS04 Glucometer Flat Lancets
- This product is quite standard and efficient for all home requirements.
- It comes with 100 Pieces in the pack all in a pristine and hygiene-enhancing white color.
- The lancets are safely disposable and have a very accurate delivery that provides sufficient samples with a minimum prick that is void of any pain.
- The product also comes with safety features like seals to ensure uncontaminated procedures.