Diabetes Supplies: All Tools & Devices, and Their Uses

Diabetes Supplies

What are Diabetes Supplies?

Diabetes supplies, in simpler words, are just the tools and equipment you, being a diabetic would need to manage your high blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia). Once diagnosed with this disease, life for people turns almost upside down. But making yourself equipped enough with supplies will make your journey with diabetes much easier.

Also, diabetes supplies will not just make your life easier,  but help you manage and prevent several other serious health issues that can be the results of diabetes, called diabetic complications.

Type 1 Diabetes Supplies 

In type 1  Diabetes the ability to produce insulin is drastically affected.  So the main purpose and the course of treatment provided to such patients is to make insulin available for the absorption of glucose by the cells of the body to produce insulin. The only option left in front of the patients suffering from Type 1 Diabetes is to rely on artificial insulin doses. 

Insulin and Its Types

Insulin and its Types

The type and the number of doses you need in a day will depend upon the severity of the lack of insulin in your body.  There are multiple options available categorized on the basis of when it starts to work (onset),  what is the time of greatest effect (peak), and how long it lasts (duration). The options available to the patients are:

  • Regular or short-acting
  • Rapid-acting
  • Intermediate-acting
  • Long-acting

Regular/Short-Acting Insulin

These are the insulin that is generally recommended to take before meals.  These are also called neutral insulin. It starts to work within 30 minutes,  has the greatest effect of 3 hours,  and lasts till 4-12 hours. In appearance the insulin is clear. 

 Examples of short-acting insulin:

  • Humulin R, 
  • Novolin R 

Rapid-acting insulin

It is said that Rapid-acting insulin is more like the insulin produced in the human pancreas. The onset of this insulin is 5 to 30 minutes and it works with the greatest efficiency between the time period of 30 minutes to 30 hours. But it lasts for 3 to 5 hours.

Examples of Rapid-acting insulins are:

  • aspart (NovoLog, FlexPen, Fiasp)
  • glulisine (Apidra)
  • lispro (Humalog)

Intermediate-acting insulin

Such types of insulin contain certain substances that allow them to work for a longer period of time. Those substances make the appearance of insulin a bit cloudy.  Talking of its onset,  it starts to work after  60 to 90 minutes. The duration of its highest effectiveness is between 4 to 12 hours. And it lasts for  14 and half hours. 

Examples of intermediate-acting insulin:

  • Humulin N, 
  • Novolin N (insulin NPH).

Long-acting insulin

It is said that it has no limits of duration, that is this insulin doesn’t have peak time and works for up to 24 hours. However,  it starts to work ok in the next 3 to 4 hours after the insulin has been injected.  Lantus and Levemir are the two examples of long-acting insulin.

Ultra Long-acting insulin: it too has no peak time, starts working in the next 6 hours and lasts for 24 hours or even 42 hours. 

Examples of Long-acting insulin are:

  • Toujeo 
  • Tresiba.

Ways to Take Insulin Doses

You will need to take insulin doses as per your doctor’s prescription. You can take insulin using:

Insulin Syringe-pen

  • Syringe/pen: you can either use insulin injections or use insulin pens. The doses are and the number of times you need to take them will be suggested by your doctors. Basically, these are called insulin shots.

 

 

Insulin pump

  • Insulin pump: Instead of shots, you can go for pumps. These are relatively convenient because you just need to attach the pump to your waistband, socks, or underwear. It contains a “catheter”, a thin tube, which you insert in your skin with a needle. This is developed on the phenomena of how the body uses insulin naturally at the required time. The pump delivers small doses all day and night.

 

Insulin Inhaler

  • Inhaler: these are yet another option for people with diabetes to take insulin doses. It is much similar to what patients with asthma do. In the case of diabetes patients inhale fine insulin powder into the unknown.  And through tiny blood vessels, the insulin reaches out to the blood in the body.

Type 2 Diabetes Supplies

In type 2 diabetes, insulin is produced by the pancreas but the body becomes insulin resistant. To combat these limitations occurring in a diabetic body it becomes important to take certain diabetes drugs or medicines so that your blood sugar level is kept normal.

Most types 2 diabetes drugs or medications focus on lowering the sugar level. And most of them are oral drugs. However, in some cases of type 2 diabetes, it becomes essential to take insulin doses as well.

There are various kinds and categories of drugs working in different fashions to lower blood sugar levels:

Alpha-glucosidase Inhibitors

This is one of those diabetes drugs that work directly on starchy food and stop them from breaking down. These are the pills that type 2 diabetics take.

Most patients currently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have been prescribed this medicine.

Because in patients recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, the sugar level tends to rise higher abruptly after the meal.

The two diabetes drugs under alpha-glucosidase inhibitors are:

  1. Acarbose (Precose)
  2. Miglitol (Glyset)

Biguanides

These are metformin. Biguanides are the class of diabetes drugs that work for maintaining blood sugar levels by prohibiting the production of sugar in the liver.

Due to this, the intestines absorb less sugar. This diabetes drug is prescribed either solely, or in combination with other diabetes medications.

The other benefits of this drug are:

Bile Acid Sequestrants (BASs)

The Bile Acid Sequestrants is a medication that is used for reducing cholesterol levels in the human body. But it also helps people with diabetes by lowering their blood sugar levels. In a diabetic body, it is often noticed that cholesterol, particularly LDL cholesterol is on its rise in a diabetic body. 

Meglitinides

These are the drugs that work better for people who have flexible eating timings and are not able to maintain consistent mealtimes. Because these very diabetic drugs work for lowering blood sugars after meals.

They can be used individually or in combination with some other medications as well.

Under Meglitinides, the medications are:

  • Prandin (repaglinide)
  • Starlix (nateglinide)

Sulfonylureas

Some of the medicines under this class of drugs are:

  • DiaBeta, Glynase, or Micronase (glyburide or glibenclamide)
  • Amaryl (glimepiride)
  • Diabinese (chlorpropamide)
  • Tolinase (tolazamide)
  • Tolbutamide

SGLT2 Inhibitors

Also known as gliflozins, sodium-glucose transport protein 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors treat type 2 diabetes. They are also known for their positive effects on weight loss, blood pressure, and blood cholesterol levels. In addition, SGLT2 Inhibitors reduce the risk of stroke, and heart attack; and slows down the progress of kidney disease.

Glucose Monitoring Diabetes Supplies

Glucose Monitoring Diabetes Supplies

Being diabetic You would always need to keep a track of your glucose levels. For this,  a blood sugar monitor, which is also known as a blood glucose meter, or glucometer. It is a handy electronic device for measuring the glucose level of your body anytime or any place So that you can make sure that your blood sugar levels are going either too high or too low. 

So you would need:

  • Tissue paper
  • Testing device (glucometer)
  • Testing strips
  • Lancing device
  • Lancet

Ketone Testing Diabetes Supplies

In diabetes, maintaining only blood sugar levels is not important. There is another side of the story too. While managing diabetes, you reduce your carbs intake. As a result, ketones are produced at increased rates. Over-production of ketones in your body can lead you to Diabetic Ketoacidosis, one of the complications of diabetes.

So for keeping track of it, you would need ketone test strips. Some of the symptoms of high ketone levels in your body are:

  • Fatigue
  • Sugar level above 300 mg/dL 
  • Thirst and Dry Mouth
  • Feeling of confusion
  • Difficulty breathing

Glucose Tablets and Glucagon

At times, or often people with diabetes suffer from hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels) as well. Or, sometimes it so happens that while managing diabetes in the initial days, you might face a downfall in body glucose levels. And you then fast-acting glucose pills and tablets.

Weighing machine

Weighing machine

Because weight plays a major role in diabetes, it becomes important for you to maintain a normal BMI to avoid any complications further. So, you are overweight and on a journey of reversing diabetes, you would need a weighing machine for daily measurement. 

Diabetes Medical Alert Bracelet

Diabetes Medical Alert Bracelet

This device is very helpful. It will help you in the need of the hour when you might be not able to speak about your condition and have no one around to do so for you. Also, it helps doctors to understand the real situation your body is going through. In addition to all this it gives indications about:

  • You take insulin
  • Types of allergies
  • Emergency contact name and contact numbers

Guidelines for Using Diabetes Supplies

Diabetes is a lifelong condition. But stop it from becoming a lifelong problem. For this, it’s important to manage it using diabetes supplies efficiently.

Steps to Check Blood Glucose Levels

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly and then make them dry.
  2. Prepare your device: take a testing strip and gently insert it inside the device
  3. Prepare your lancet device: open the lid, put the lancet, remove the cap off, and put the lid back, choose the depth and push the plunger. Your lancing device is ready. 
  4. Choose a finger and gently press it on a finger avoiding injury to your nails.
  5. Take a drop of blood on the strip inserted in the testing device.
  6. Wait for the reading. Make sure to remove the strip from the device.
  7. Dump all the waste materials.

Steps to Check Ketones Levels

There are two different ways to test for ketones levels. The first and the traditional way of testing ketone levels is by using urine ketone testing strips, and the second and recent way is to do it by blood ketone testing methods.

Blood tests for ketones are similar to how you do blood glucose tests. 

Steps:

  1. Check the expiry dates of the strips before using
  2. Remove a strip from the tub taking care not to touch the spongy end of the strip
  3. Pass urine over the test area of the urine
  4. Begin timing immediately after applying urine
  5. After 15 minutes, compare the color of the urine with the test given on the strip tub.
  6. Don’t consider any changes after 15 seconds have passed.

Diabetes Supplies Companies

You should know about some of the leading companies providing you with the best quality of diabetes supplies. Some of the best suppliers are:

  • Byram Healthcare
  • Edgepark
  • Mantra Care
  • Medtronic
  • Tandem
  • Insulet
  • Dixon

Conclusion

Here we have reached the end. All you need to know is that it is your body and it will be you taking care of it lifelong. You need to be very sure about the impact that certain edible things are going to put on your body. The wisest option is to make a balanced diet chart for yourself and make a note of everything that helps you in a positive manner. More importantly, you should be aware of the methods by which you can monitor your sugar level timely. Hope you ended up having a productive time reading the above article about blood sugar levels.

A Word From MantraCare

If you are looking for more information on this topic or on Diabetes treatment, Online Therapy, Hypertension, PCOS treatment, Weight Loss, and Physiotherapy, please visit mantracare.org or feel free to reach out to us at +91-9711118331 or email at [email protected]. You can also download our free Android App or IOS app.

Here at Mantra Care, we have an incredibly skilled team of health care professionals and coaches who will be happy to answer any questions and provide further information so you know what’s best for your unique needs.

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