A Continuous Glucose Monitor is are for those who hate sticking their fingers for blood sugar.
So, you’ve come to the right spot.
Let’s explore how you can get your hands on a continuous glucose monitor, what it is, and what it means to you.
Unlike traditional blood glucose monitoring, called BGM, continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) devices, are small sensor-based systems that provide real-time glucose readings day and night, without fingersticks.
There are 2 main manufacturers out there, FreeStyle Libre by Abbott and Dexcom.
Abbott’s Libre is much less expensive and more adaptable to your needs.
How it works
All these monitors are pretty much the same. Some have more bells and whistles on them, depending on how much you want to spend.
- You apply the sensor to the back of your upper arm.
It does not hurt to put it in the arm. Many patients have told me they worried about sticking the senor’s little filament in their arm, but then realized there was no pain!
You will replace the sensor every 2 weeks. Don’t worry about this or its cost right now.
- The sensor collects information and continuously measures and stores glucose readings while you wear it.
This safety feature not only monitors your blood sugar 24/7 but it also tells you when your blood sugar is too low or too high.
Even while you are sleeping, it can read your sugars.
You can also set alarms to let you know when to be concerned.
- Now you will view glucose readings on your smartphone. This makes eating and picking the right foods quite easy.
Once you get the Reverse My Diabetes Now Guidebook, you will have an idea of what works and doesn’t work for you.
Starting out slowly is best. Testing one food at a time and keeping a log of which foods has no effect on your sugar and which ones raised your sugar will help you decide what you can and cannot have.
Step #1 – Learn the Continuous Glucose Monitors Basics
Start by going to your local pharmacist to see what the Libre 2 and Libre 3 will cost.
- Here are the following questions you will need to ask.
- Does the Libre Kit come with everything I need?
- How often do I need to change out the senor?
- Will I need to purchase an app to go with this program?
- How will my doctor get my real sugars?
- Will I be able to download this data and keep a record of it?
- How expensive are extra supplies?
- What are these extra supplies I will need?
- Do I need a prescription in order to get one of these?
Step #2 – Pricing Out the Continuous Glucose Monitors
Now let’s shop around. Your insurance does not like to pay for this.
We will not discuss why because it makes no sense.
All the research proves Continuous Glucose Monitors help diabetics reach a normal A1c faster and maintain it better than those who do not have one.
- Go to Pharmacychecker.com and type in the name of the CGM kit you want and your zip code. The ZIP CODE button is hard to find…click on U.S. Coupon Prices, then look right below the name “Pharmacy” and you’ll see “You’re comparing prices for…”
- Do the same at GoodRX.com
- Ask your favorite pharmacy to price out the kit as well as future materials.
Step #3 – Continuous Glucose Monitor Requirements
Most likely you will need a prescription.
Call your doctor to get a prescription for this Continuous Glucose Monitor Kit.
Tell them where to send the prescription and tell the office the exact kit you want.
Your physician or NP, or PA providers might tell you it’s not covered by insurance and will not prescribe it. Tell them there is no law that you can’t buy one yourself and you prefer to get your diabetes under control.
Be sure to tell them that you can no longer “fingerstick” as it is too painful. This is important as this may lead the way to insurance eventually covering for you.
Also, tell the office that you do well over 4 fingersticks a day right now and your sugars are still out of control.
You might even want to pick up the paper prescription so you can continue to shop from place to place.
Focus on getting the first kit that you can use for 2 weeks. Don’t worry about future supplies, like the sensors you will need. You can continue to shop for those items later.
Step #4 – CGM Training
Those who have gotten their A1c under 6.0 and enjoy the success of living again without worrying about the foods they eat have mastered this device.
It is second nature to them and they can actually teach the tricks within the device that even make it easier.
So, once you have the kit in hand, go to your favorite pharmacist and learn how to use it.
Set up a time to meet with the pharmacist and get the training you need. Do not set up an appointment with the pharmacy technician. You need to talk only to a licensed and trained pharmacist.
Then master this device like learning to drive in traffic. Get serious about it. It’s your ticket to getting your life back.