Monitoring blood glucose levels for diabetics is a way of life. The last thing a diabetic would need is to have a glucose or plasma meter that doesn’t function well and they get the wrong results.
Here are a few tips for understanding a blood glucose monitoring system or meter…
- Consult a diabetes educator before making a blood glucose monitoring system purchase. No meter is alike…every meter functions a different way. The educator will know how to interpret the meter’s results and will be able to help you understand the reading.
- Make sure you read the instructions before using the meter, all meters get results in a different way. Generally, you would prick your finger with a lancet, put the blood on a test strip and stick it in the meter. However, every meter has a different set of instructions on how to achieve a blood sample especially what to do if you get an error message and how to clear that error message. Read the instructions and you can’t go wrong!
- Know the difference between Whole Blood Glucose vs. Plasma Glucose. Most labs measure the glucose in plasma, while the home based meters measure the glucose in whole blood. If the meter is plasma equivalent, it means that that the results of the reading will be comparable to a test result from a lab.
- Clean your meter with mild soap or water. Alcohol based chemicals can damage the sensitive parts of the meter. Only use alcohol based chemicals if it is recommended in the instructions.
- Bring the meter to the health care provider’s office. The health care provider can make sure that you are taking a blood sample correctly. The last thing you want to do is take a blood sample the wrong way and get the wrong results.
- Temperature, altitude and humidity can affect glucose results. Store the meter in a safe place according to the recommended places in the instructions.
Choosing a Diabetic Shoe
Diabetes is a disease that should be taken serious but you can enjoy life if you have the right diabetic shoes. Doctors recommend patients purchase shoes specifically designed for diabetics. When looking for a pair of diabetic shoes, there are a few things that the patient should consider…
Ventilation and Circulation
Look for proper ventilation and make sure it has it. Proper ventilation provides the feet air so that heat and dampness is reduced significantly. Circulation is very important because it prevents ulcers and allows skin to breathe.
Why is sweat bad? Bacteria love wet dark places that have a lot of moisture. The more moisture, the greater chance you have for infection.
Make sure the shoe has toe and heel curves. The curves will force your feet to balance when you walk. The shoe toe box should be very durable and high to protect sensitive toes from toe injury.
If it is lightweight and seamless, there is a great chance that you will prevent calluses from forming and blister breakout. Diabetic shoes tend to be wider and bigger than the regular shoes.
Make sure there are no inseams because inseams will cause rubbing toe injuries. Leather uppers or lining will work as well. Leather uppers will keep the feet cool and dry. The inside should be very soft.
You don’t want your foot to be sliding around! Make sure it has adjustable straps or elastic strap
The outer sole should be hard or non-skid for better traction and for better protection. A padded heel will protect from irritation.
It is very important that they fit properly. Improper fitment will lead to discomfort or even more foot problems. Make sure they are closed toed as well. A padded tongue will reduce friction and improve the fit.
Proper Foot Care for Diabetes
Footwear works well but you have to make sure you take care of your toenails as well. Here are a few tips and steps for taking care of your feet…
• Wash your feet every day with mild soap and warm water. Pat your skin dry and do not rub.
• Trim your toenails
• Keep your feet moisturized. Do not put lotion between your toes.
• Check your feet daily for cracked, dry, blisters, scratches, sores and cuts.
• Cut toenails after bathing when they are soft. If you cut your toenails, cut straight across and smooth down with a nail file. Consult a podiatrist if you aren’t sure.
• Never walk around barefoot because you risk cuts, bunions, scraps, scratches, calluses and corns.
• Never wear any shoe that is not closed toe or doesn’t have a hard sole. No high hears or any pointed shoes. You want to protect your feet to the maximum.
• Finding the right sock is very important. Wear natural-fiber socks with your footwear. Fiber shape socks work well. Some socks provide deodorizers and has innumerable hole structures for absorption and decomposition or foot odors. Others regulate skin temperature to keep the feet cool.
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Stracon Medical Supply, a medical supply company located in Grand Prairie, Texas, is your one stop shop for reliable medical equipment, medical supplies, diabetic supplies, incontinence supplies and more! We specialize in meeting the medical supply needs of home health care, physician offices, clinics, nursing homes and hospitals.
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