You’ve probably heard about continuous glucose monitoring (CGM), but you may be wondering if it’s the answer to your questions about managing your type 2 diabetes.
You have countless questions: Is it safe? Do I have to go to the diabetes educator to learn how to use it? How accurate is this technology? And how much does it cost?
These are all great questions to be asking. Please keep reading to learn more about how a CGM patch works and whether or not it’s safe, easy to use, and can help you optimize your diabetes health.
Choose the Right Spot
When deciding on the best spot for your CGM patch, consider your daily activities. You’ll want to place it somewhere it won’t be bumped or irritated. For instance, if you sleep on your stomach, the abdomen might not be the best choice.
Conversely, if you’re a runner, your thigh might not be the most suitable spot. Remember, the CGM patch should be placed where it can remain undisturbed yet easily accessible for readings.
It’s best to choose an area that is relatively flat and has a good blood supply, such as your abdomen, upper arms, or thighs. Avoid areas with scars, moles, or bony areas.
Clean the Area Before Applying
Cleaning up the area where you plan to apply the CGM patch is crucial. Start by washing your hands thoroughly. Then, clean the preferred patch site with warm water and a gentle soap. Make sure to rinse off the soap properly to avoid any residue and pat the skin dry gently.
Do not use moisturizers, oils, or lotions as they can affect the patch’s adhesive. Having a clean, dry surface helps the CGM patch stick better and stay in place. This simple step can contribute significantly to the patch’s effectiveness and comfort.
Rotate the Site
Rotating the site where you place the CGM patch is a key step in maintaining your skin’s health. It involves changing the location of the patch on your body each time you apply a new one. If you’re using your abdomen, for instance, don’t apply the new patch in the exact same spot as the old one.
Move it over a bit, giving the previous area a break. This method reduces the chance of skin irritation or reaction to the adhesive. It also helps preserve the effectiveness of the adhesive, ensuring a secure attachment each time. Rotate the site, and your skin will thank you.
Trim Your Hair
Hair at the site can interfere with the adherence to the CGM patch. To prevent this, consider giving the area a gentle trim. You don’t need to shave the area completely; a simple trim will suffice.
Use a clean and sharp pair of scissors for this purpose. Doing so will ensure that the patch sticks better to your skin and provides the most accurate readings.
Remember, trimming your hair is not about aesthetics but about ensuring the CGM patch functions effectively. In the process, you might also find the patch easier to remove with less discomfort.
Keep It Dry
The CGM patch performs best when it is kept dry. Avoid activities that cause excessive sweating, like high-intensity workouts, if they coincide with your CGM patch application time. Also, steer clear of situations that involve immersing the patch in water for extended periods – for instance, avoid long baths or swimming sessions.
If the patch does get wet, dry it gently and quickly. Pat it dry, don’t rub. Rubbing can loosen the adhesive. Proper care can help maintain the accuracy of your CGM patch for a longer duration, giving you reliable glucose readings.
Monitor Your Readings
Monitoring your blood sugar with a traditional glucose meter is key when using a CGM patch. This is known as calibration. Calibration involves comparing the readings from your CGM patch to those from your traditional glucose meter. This process ensures that your CGM patch is working correctly and providing accurate results.
Remember to check your blood sugar levels with your traditional meter at least twice a day. It’s especially important to do this when you start using a new CGM patch or if you feel symptoms of low or high blood sugar. These regular checks can help you address any irregularities promptly and maintain better control over your blood sugar levels.
Regular monitoring and calibration are vital steps in effectively managing your type 2 diabetes with a CGM patch.
Be Aware of Interference
Certain substances can interfere with your CGM patch’s readings. One common substance is acetaminophen, often found in pain relievers and fever reducers. Even vitamin C in large doses can disrupt your CGM patch’s functioning. This interference can lead to incorrect blood glucose readings.
It’s crucial to let your healthcare provider know about all the medications or supplements you are taking. They can help you understand how these substances might affect your CGM patch’s accuracy. Remember, accurate readings are key to managing your type 2 diabetes effectively. So, be aware and proactive in preventing possible interference.
Consult Your Healthcare Provider
Navigating the use of a CGM patch can sometimes feel daunting. But remember, you’re not alone in this journey. Your healthcare provider is there to help. They can offer guidance and answer any questions you might have about using a CGM patch.
Additionally, they can provide individualized advice to maximize the benefits of your CGM patch. Make sure to see these medicare CGM requirements for more details about coverage. It’s also crucial to discuss any issues you may face, such as skin irritation, reading inaccuracies, or patch adhesion problems.
Your health should always be your top priority. So, never hesitate to reach out to your healthcare provider when in doubt.
Making the Most of Your CGM Patch
Integrating a CGM patch into your diabetes management routine can be a transformative experience, providing valuable insights into your blood glucose levels and enabling more proactive health decisions.
By following this CGM patch usage guide, individuals with Type 2 Diabetes can navigate the world of CGM with confidence, leading to improved overall well-being and a better quality of life.
Did this article help you? If so, take a look at some of our other blog posts for more informative reads.