Why Is Very Important To Monitor Blood Glucose Levels?

Last updated on August 17, 2022

Importance of Monitoring Blood Glucose Levels

Monitoring blood glucose levels is a critical aspect of managing diabetes. Keeping blood sugar levels within a healthy range is essential to prevent complications such as nerve damage, kidney disease, and blindness. Blood glucose monitoring involves tracking your blood sugar levels regularly, usually several times a day, to ensure that it stays within a safe range.

Monitor Blood Glucose Levels

This process is essential for people with diabetes who rely on insulin or other medications to manage their condition. Understanding the importance of monitoring blood glucose levels can help individuals with diabetes make informed decisions about their health and well-being. In this article, we will explore the importance of monitoring blood glucose levels and how it can benefit individuals with diabetes in managing their condition.

Health Risks of High and Low Blood Sugar Levels

High and low blood sugar levels can have serious health consequences for individuals with diabetes. Monitoring blood glucose levels is a crucial component of managing diabetes and preventing complications. When blood sugar levels are too high (hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia), it can lead to a range of symptoms, including fatigue, blurred vision, dizziness, confusion, and even coma or death in extreme cases.

Chronic high blood sugar levels can also cause long-term damage to blood vessels and nerves, increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, eye damage, and foot damage. On the other hand, low blood sugar levels can cause seizures, unconsciousness, and brain damage.

Regular monitoring of blood glucose levels is essential to keep blood sugar levels within a safe range and prevent these potential health risks. This can involve using a blood glucose meter to check blood sugar levels several times a day, following a healthy diet and exercise routine, taking medications as prescribed by a healthcare provider and communicating with a healthcare team to adjust treatment plans as needed.

Hyperglycemia and Hypoglycemia 

control your blood sugar levels


Hyperglycemia is the technical term for high blood sugar (
Blood sugar high level). It happens when the body has too little insulin or when the body can't use insulin properly. 

Here are a few of the causes:
  • Too much food, like a meal or snack with more carbohydrates than usual
  • Dehydration
  • Not being active
  • Not enough insulin or oral diabetes medications
  • Side effects from other medications, such as steroids or antipsychotic medications
  • Illness, stress, menstrual periods, or short or long-term pain (these all cause your body to release hormones that can raise blood sugar levels)
control your blood sugar levels

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood sugar)

Low blood sugar is when your blood sugar levels have fallen low enough that you need to take action to bring them back to your target range. This is usually when your blood sugar is less than 70 mg/dL. However, talk to your diabetes care team about your own blood sugar targets, and what level is too low for you.

Low blood sugar may also be referred to as an insulin reaction, or insulin shock.

Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar (happen quickly)

Each person's reaction to low blood sugar is different. Learn your own signs and symptoms when your blood sugar is low. Taking time to write these symptoms down may help you learn your own symptoms when your blood sugar is low. From milder, more common indicators to the most severe, signs and symptoms of low blood sugar include:

Feeling shaky Being nervous or anxious Sweating, chills, and clamminess Irritability or impatience
Confusion Fast heartbeat Feeling lightheaded or dizzy Hunger
Nausea Color draining from the skin (pallor) Feeling sleepy Feeling weak or having no energy
Blurred/impaired vision Tingling or numbness in the lips, tongue, or cheeks Headaches Coordination problems, clumsiness
Nightmares or crying out during sleep Seizures

Blood sugar fasting

What is blood sugar when fasting?  Your doctors ask people to measure fasting blood sugar immediately upon waking and before they have anything to eat or drink.

The expected values for normal fasting blood glucose concentration are between 70 mg/dL (3.9 mmol/L) and 100 mg/dL (5.6 mmol/L). When fasting blood glucose is between 100 to 125 mg/dL (5.6 to 6.9 mmol/L) changes in lifestyle and monitoring glycemia are recommended. If fasting blood glucose is 126 mg/dL (7 mmol/L) or higher on two separate tests, diabetes is diagnosed.


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How to Use a Glucometer

A glucometer is a small, portable device that lets you check your blood sugars (glucose levels) at home. No matter what type of diabetes you have, a glucometer can give you valuable information.

Also called glucose meters, these devices can tell you in seconds if your blood sugar is too low, too high, or on target. Regular monitoring helps you manage your diabetes, but it's important to use your glucometer the right way.

When is recommended to use the Glucometer?
Type 1 Diabetes Type 2 and Gestational Diabetes
Before eating (meals & snacks) First thing in the morning and before bed
Before and after exercise Before each meal and before bed
Before and after exercise Before and two hours after each meal and before bed
Possibly during the night

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