November is American Diabetes Month! Over the years, innovative technology has helped individual living with diabetes gain better control of their health. In the article below, Port St. Lucie-based endocrinologist Ahmet Ergin, MD discusses continuous glucose monitoring and how it can be a helpful blood sugar management tool.
What is Continuous Glucose Monitoring?
Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) is a blood sugar monitoring method that focuses on using a device that is similar to an insulin pump. It is self-inserted into the skin non-surgically. The system then generates ongoing, real-time readings of your glucose levels.
Traditional finger prick testing of blood glucose levels gives blood sugar readings at a single point in time. You won’t know what your blood sugar will be in an hour, or if your sugars are trending upward or downward. CGM systems allows users to see blood sugar trends anytime. Some CGMs do not even require finger sticks for calibration anymore.
Is CGM the Right Option for Me?
A CGM system can be a useful tool for managing diabetes. When used in conjunction with insulin pumps or even multiple daily injections, the device can improve the quality of diabetes care.
If you experience the following issues, a CGM system may be a good option for you:
- If you are unable to meet and maintain an optimal Hemoglobin A1C level.
- You frequently experience low glucose levels.
- You are mostly unaware of your blood sugar level.
- You want to lower your A1C target safely without triggering or causing a higher risk for hypoglycemia.
- Your blood sugar levels fluctuate frequently.
What Are the Benefits of CGM Systems?
Using a CGM system can make it easier for you to manage your diabetic condition and also live your life with more freedom. A few potential benefits include:
- Improved A1C Levels. Used as an outpatient device, CGM systems can be effective in helping maintain and lower A1C levels safely.
- Detect Blood Sugar Lows and Highs. Since constant readings are being taken, the CGM system can give fairly accurate readings about your glucose levels. The data gathered can alert you about your high and low blood sugars before they occur. CGM can prevent you from experiencing hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) or hyperglycemia (high blood sugar). It is important to know that certain conditions may impact reading accuracy.
In closing, CGM systems are easy to use. These monitoring systems are perfect for personal use and are often recommended by endocrinologists because they are simple to manage. People who live with diabetes can check their glucose levels with real-time readings at any time without finger sticks. CGM systems can be used with an insulin pump or independently. Additionally, these readings can be generated on a real-time basis or collected over a short time period.
Before you get a CGM system, remember to consult your endocrinologist or seek help from a knowledgeable specialist who understands these systems. For a prescription for a continuous glucose monitoring system, call 772-398-7814.
Dr. Ergin is an endocrinologist affiliated with St. Lucie Medical Center in Port St. Lucie. For more information about Dr. Ergin, visit https://stluciemed.com/physicians/profile/Dr-Ahmet-Ergin-MD