Diabetes and Your Meter

Testing blood sugar is important
Testing blood sugar is important

Testing your blood sugar with a blood glucose meter is one of the key skills of successful diabetes management. Each individual requires a different blood glucose testing approach for their diabetes, and some will need to test blood glucose more regularly than others.

Self-monitoring of blood glucose can be very important. An accurate testing regime can help to find the right diet and exercise, and avoid diabetes complications.

Furthermore, each blood glucose meter has different attributes, and some meters will suit different individuals better than others.

Choosing the right blood glucose meter

There are a wide variety of blood glucose meters on the market. Some meters are designed for ease of use; others for ease of transport or connectivity, still more incorporate advanced technology such as USB software or multi-strip testing.  

Learning to use Your glucose meter

Blood glucose meters work in different ways, and you may need training from a diabetes healthcare professional to help you understand how to use your blood glucose meter.

Furthermore, the Diabetes.co.uk community will have a range of help and advice to offer about using your blood glucose meter.

Which meter for you?

Getting the right blood glucose meter is a matter of looking at what is available and what you will need the meter for.

For instance, you should ask yourself questions such as will you be travelling a lot with the meter, will you need to test in public and therefore prefer a discreet meter, do you like to travel light and require a very portable blood glucose meter?

Many people prefer a small, compact meter.

All of these questions and more should be answered by the diabetes blood glucose monitor information below, now including video guides.

Top diabetes meters with video reviews

Our very own Sue Marshall has reviewed some of the most popular blood sugar meters available in the UK and provides an informative walkthrough about how to use the following meters.

What the community are saying about their blood meters?

  • Candyfloss: No one seems to have a view on why these test strips cost as much as they do. Personally I feel there is absolutely now no justification for the price that they are. I don't deny any company from recouping its research and development costs and making a reasonable profit, after all we live in a capitalist society whether we like it or not and undoubtedly the meters and test strips must have cost several millions to develop. However these things have now been available long enough for all these initial costs to have been recouped when you consider the number prescribed by the NHS and private sales.
  • Cugila: I use a Lifescan UltraSmart and also an UltraEasy at the moment which both came with everything I needed. The meter does everything I could ever want and the software which I use on my PC is easy to use and gives me all sorts of graphing capability. I e-mail readings and graphs etc to both my Endo and SDSN as and when I need to.
  • Angelak: When I asked for more test strips I was phoned by the doctor and asked what was I doing with them! When I said I was monitoring how different foods were changing my blood glucose I was told that it wasn't necessary and Health Board advice was T2 should not be testing that I would get an HB1ac test if anything was wrong though how I would know that if I don't monitor my blood sugar is beyond me.
  • sJay: As to painful finger pricking, I would ask the DSN to show you some techniques and perhaps help with setting up the finger pricker depths to be more suitable for you. As this all help limit any pain there might be, she may also have a selection of finger prickers of different makes to suit different people.
  • Sparkle_87: My biggest issue is the amount of test strips that I am going through and the last time I went to the doctors to renew my prescription I was told that the 100 strips I am issued with at a time should last me about a month. I told my doctor that I am checking when I wake up, 2 hours before and after meals and before bed and he told me that I don't need to check it 2 hours after my food as if it is too low I will know about it and if it is too high there is nothing I can do about it anyway.
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