Some of my "best practices" for getting the most accurate blood sugar results:
- Use a new strip each time you test. Yes, they are expensive, but they are only effective for a single use, so make the investment. (Your doctor should be able to write you a prescription and that will help lower the price.)
- Be sure the needle in your lancing device is sharp and properly adjusted. If your needle is dull, it's going to be more painful to break through your skin, so change to a new needle periodically and be sure to dispose of used needles appropriately. (I have a plastic sharps container that I take to a hazardous waste disposal facility when it's full.)
- Wash your hands with warm water then dry them completely. It's important that the test site is completely dry so that you don't dilute the sample for the meter. I also hold my hand as low as possible so that the blood flows into my fingers.
- Press one side of the finger you're testing into a hard surface like a table or bathroom counter. On the other side you'll press gently down with the lancing device, pinning your finger in between. When you're ready, press the trigger on the lancing device then massage your finger until a small blood drop forms.
- Don't actually touch the end of the test strip with your finger, just get close enough for the blood drop to be absorbed by the strip in the meter. Touching the meter can throw off the test and you'll have to start from the beginning with a new strip and new test site.
|Preparing for my pre-breakfast test this morning|
- Finally, be sure to vary which meal you test around so that you can see how your control varies throughout the day. For instance, today I tested just before dinner and two hours after starting dinner, so tomorrow I will test around lunch or breakfast instead.