If you have diabetes mellitus type 1 or type 2 you are likely to need a glucose meter. If you have been newly diagnosed with diabetes, you may question what type of glucometer will be appropriate for your blood glucose monitoring. What should you look for in a glucose meter? The following tips may help you decide on what type of glucometer is right for you.
- Price Range: Glucometers vary in price range. You can purchase glucose monitors from about $20 to $90 and over. The glucometers may be very expensive, but the container of testing strips can be what is expensive.
- Insurance Coverage: If you are a diabetic who must do a blood sugar test with a glucometer on a regular basis, you should consider purchasing a glucometer and diabetes testing strips that are covered by health insurance. Most brands, but not all, of blood glucose monitoring machines are covered by insurance. Some glucose monitoring machines and testing strips require higher co-pays than others.
- Accuracy: Some glucometers may be more accurate than others. Some brands of glucose meters have to be programmed to read the testing strips. If you are looking for a good glucose monitor, you will need to take certain things into consideration. For instance, if you think you might have problems programming a blood glucose monitoring machine, then you might need a simple machine that does not need to be pre-programmed. Units that require programming to read the testing strips will not be accurate if the glucometer isn’t programmed.
- Costs over Time: Some insurance companies pay for part of the cost of the testing supplies, such as the control solution, lancets, testing strips, and batteries. Some insurance companies will pay more for some glucose testing supplies than others. Most people choose glucometers and diabetic testing supplies according to the amount of insurance coverage allowed for them. If you need a diabetes glucose testing machine that isn’t covered by your insurance, you might have your doctor contact your insurance company to ask for coverage for your machine and testing supplies.
- Readability: Consider your eyesight. Does the glucose meter have a screen with numbers big enough to see? If your eyesight is relatively bad, you might not be able to see the blood glucose reading, so you might want to consider the size of the machine before purchasing it.
- Usability: Small glucometers may be attractive, but if you have dexterity problems of some sort, such as with arthritis of the hands, you may not be able to perform your blood sugar test by yourself.
- Features: Part of the pricing of glucometers is related to the memory feature. Some glucometers save only the last blood sugar test, while other machines save up to 500 diabetes monitoring results. If you have to test several times a day, you would likely need a glucometer with a large memory. With a large memory feature, you can review your blood glucose levels over several days.
- Blood Sample: You should consider purchasing a glucometer by how much blood that it needs to give a glucose test reading. If you think you won’t be able to tolerate sticking your fingers several times a day, you might want to choose a glucometer that can test blood samples taken from the arms, which are less sensitive to the sticks.
If you are tired of sticking your fingers to get blood samples for your glucometer readings, you might want to change to a glucose meter that doesn’t require you to stick your fingers. Many of the newer glucose meters are so high tech they require less blood to give a reading. It is important to check your blood glucose as ordered by your physician to monitor your diabetic blood sugar. Thus, if glucose testing is made easier, people with diabetes will not dread the next test.