I’m sure there was a time when people were dealing with their diabetes; and were used to peeing in a cup, boiling water, dropping in tablets to match a color chart, and check the color of urine to see how much insulin was needed, they were content with the procedure because it was really the only choice. You did it this way because that is the way it was. And along came a study that showed close control of blood sugars could help enhance the life style of those with diabetes and even prolong lives.
Well the pharmaceutical business EXPLODED with devices and treatments never seen before in our diabetes world. What was a 30 minute process, minimum, was now being done in 30 seconds…….but there was a catch. The individual needed to harpoon themselves 4-8 times daily to produce a drop of blood used to measure the glucose when applied to a strip attached to a meter. That was the tradeoff. It was better and faster but to the individual, was it ‘better’ to stab oneself in the exchange of faster and more accuracy? That is the way it was.
You see if you have been around in this diabetes world twenty years or less, you really do not know anything else but glucometers as THE DEVICE to use. You became used to ‘harpooning’ yourself because that was the way of the world and you were taught nothing different.
An all-out war broke out in the pharmaceutical world to be the fastest meter, the most compact meter, and the most accurate meter. And work began to improve upon ‘the norm’; to make it so no blood drop was even needed. A way or a means to check one’s glucose constantly and on a device where the information was sent electronically, constantly……..like predecessor management tools, it seemed like a dream come true. But it happened and the continuous glucose monitor (CGM) is now a part of our every day life……..for some.
“I do not want to wear something all of the time?”
“I’d rather do it the old-fashioned way with a meter.”
“Being attached does not seem right to me.”
And if you did not always use a CGM……that is your call.
But we bought up a generation of kids who knew nothing else when it came to harpooning themselves to obtain that drop of blood…..it almost seems archaic, doesn’t it? But they surely accepted it as ‘the norm’. It’s time to bring up a new generation of kids. Kids who know nothing else but wearing a CGM………because it makes sense. The glucometers are becoming less and less and more people are on a CGM than ever before. Sure we need glucometers, but now they are mostly a back up.
It makes sense that there is something that can alarm when you are low and warn you. It makes sense to have a management tool almost the time you are diagnosed that can help prevent those swings from low to high and back low again that leaves the person with diabetes feeling like that they are in a spiral in all sorts of directions. It makes sense to wear something that checks one’s blood sugar constantly. I’m sure when the choice was to pee in a cup instead of harpooning yourself, it seemed likely to stay with the old way, it was easier………but we now know it was NOT better. Was it?
It’s time to once again challenge ourselves with something better and not necessarily easier. A CGM should be given as soon as a diagnosis occurs. We need to ask those questions once again? From the moment one is diagnosed.
What do you think?
I am a diabetes dad.
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