Updated 29 July 2019

Why diabetes treatments have become tech savvy

A fingerstick a day use to keep the doctor away, but the latest developments in Diabetes management are making it even easier to keep your blood glucose levels at bay.

Given it’s intensive monitoring, Diabetes management has been challenged to become more user-friendly and tech savvy over the years. 

Diabetes, like other chronic diseases, is a condition that is highly integrated into the everyday lives of the people who have it. Adults with Type 1 diabetes are advised to self-monitor their blood glucose levels at least 4 times per day, including before each meal and before bed, according to current NICE guidelines. 

Using technology to facilitate diabetes self-management is not a new idea, but as patients become more technologically savvy, devices become more available, new technologies emerge, and the variety of technological self-management strategies increases states the World Journal of Diabetes

This is how Diabetes treatments have become more tech savvy:

1.       Apps are becoming alternatives to readers

With the latest apps that accompany Flash Glucose Monitoring Systems, diabetes sufferers can monitor their glucose on their compatible smartphone. The FreeStyle LibreLink app for example can be used instead of a FreeStyle Libre reader to scan the sensor and provide readings without needing a fingerstick*. The app allows you to view your current glucose reading, see a trend arrow of your days readings and view your history up to 8 hours. This technology is available in South Africa, on both Android and iOS app stores.

Other apps help people with diabetes on a supplementary level.Fooducate for example can educate you on which foods are best for keeping your blood sugar in a healthy range while apps like Diabetes:M helps you sync your life with test time reminders, a nutritional log and tracking system, integrations with fitness apps, and blood sugar trend mapping.

2.       Sharing the moment can include sharing your glucose data

Sharing life’s highlights is the pivot of social media and the foundation of insta-culture. But besides sharing your favourite coffee spots and travel adventures, you can now share your glucose data with your health care professional using LibreView a cloud-based data management tool. Healthcare providers have secure, online access to glucose insights when you share it with them. Family or caregivers can also remotely monitor their loved one’s glucose readings through the latest diabetes management app, called LibreLinkUp.

3.       Fitness wearables can stretch to blood sugar tracking 

Wearables and fitness trackers are not only great for reaching your daily steps and burning calories but have built in features that are valuable for people with diabetes to manage their lifestyles. Physical exercise is essential to lowering blood sugar and fitness trackers can motivate you to keep moving. Additionally, sleep monitors can assist in identifying restless nights since sleep apnoea and nerve pain at night go hand-in-hand with Diabetes. If your device records many restless nights, talk to your doctor.   

This post is sponsored by Abbott Laboratories SA (Pty) Ltd. produced by BrandStudio24 for Health24.


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