Sue Marshall, Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology

34

LIVING

Ringing alarm bells?

Alarmed about alarms? Don't be... alarm fatigue is

not inevitable, and the right alarms could save your

life. By Sue Marshall.

To alarm or not to alarm, that

is the question. Or at least,

it's a question for some

people. Not all of us have

access to technologies that beeps at

us - or want it. But insulin pumps and

continuous glucose monitors (CGM)

are with us, and they are here to stay.

So, let's take a look at what alarms are

out there, and which you can avoid (if

you wish) or else have to submit too.

Pumps have come on the scene

over the last 15-or-so years in the

UK, and CGM gradually over the

last five years, a major turning point

being when it was possible (for those

who qualify) to get a FreeStyle Libre

on the NHS. Previously, it was only

available - and remains available - to

those who wish to and can afford to

self fund.

I once interviewed someone

who said, 'I used to think I could not

afford CGM, now I think I can't afford

not to.'

When it came to the dawn of the

new sensor technology, users on

both sides - clinicians and people

with diabetes themselves - were

curious but not convinced. Itw as

only in the last few years, as use

grew and the technology evolved,

that the benefits became much more

apparent. Yes, there were mutterings

about cost. Any new technology is

costly, research and design (R&D)

is expensive, and it might not work

out for the company undertaking

it. So it can be a slow and dogged

process to get new products made

and approved.

One aspect of choosing a device

is whether or not it has alarms, and

if it does, how customisable are they

around your own needs and wishes?

If you've not used a device before,

then you may not fully understand

how it will fit in - all tech involves a

leap into the dark to some extent.

Even choosing a device is fraught

with concerns. Half the time you just

have to guess - you've not used it, so

how do you know it's right for you?

It's easier if it's an evolution - you've

used the previous version, you're

just upgrading to the newer one. But

when it's your first time on a pump

or CGM (or Abbott's Flash Glucose

Monitoring device, the Libre), then

understanding the pros and cons of

having alarms set up matters.

Be in no doubt, we are on the

'nursery slopes' here, and we are

all guinea pigs. But the benefits are

proven. They may be marginal en

masse, but for some individuals they

are massive.

Why alarms?

I'll start with the general, then get

to the specifics. The simplest alarm

is when you can ask your blood test

meter to remind you to test. If you

can remember to test before each

meal, then there's no need for you to

have an alarm to remind you to do so.

If your life is less 9-5, then maybe a

reminder is useful.

CGMs have two purposes -

keeping track of your glucose levels

on a continuous basis, and alarms

based on that data. Several devices

can now tell you with an aural alarm

warning if your blood glucose is are

going up or down. This is based on

the 'rate of change' of your levels,

the rate at which they are going up

(or down). If it's moving fast, then

the alarm can tell you - alert you -

to this and you can do something

about it. Going down? Have a little

boost - a few jelly babies, a biscuit, a

swig of apple juice. Going up? Time

to rethink your last carb count -

did you underestimate (statistically

likely); or is it the almost unavoidable

post-prandial high which happens

after virtually every meal. Maybe

should just wait it out, make sure the

insulin you gave yourself has finished

its action. Add insulin now, and you

could be heading for a low later. Or

did you really goof-up and totally

underestimate?

It's hard to judge how valuable

alarms are until you've had a taste

of them. If you are managing OK

without them, then likely as not,

Index

  1. Desang Diabetes Magazine, free diabetes magazine
  2. Desang Diabetes Magazine, free diabetes magazine
  3. Desang Diabetes Magazine, free diabetes magazine
  4. Free online Desang diabetes magazine diabetes information, Diabeloop
  5. diabetes news, diabetes research news, diabetes information, diabetes news
  6. Spirit Pharmacy for people with diabetes
  7. Page 0007
  8. Abbott Freestyle Libre 2, Flash Glucose Monitoring, FSL2, Abbott Wellness Factory
  9. Abbott Freestyle Libre 2, Flash Glucose Monitoring, FSL2
  10. JDRF UK Type 1 diabetes charity
  11. Medtrum A6 Touchcare patch pump and CGM in harmony
  12. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  13. Air Liquide Healthcare UK, Tandem t:slim insulin pump, , Control-iQ
  14. Page 0014
  15. Insulet Omnipod DASH insulin pump with insulin pods, podders, Omnipod DASH Personal Diabetes Manager
  16. Page 0016
  17. Dexcom G6 CGM, continuous glucose monitoring
  18. Page 0018
  19. Page 0019
  20. Medtronic MiniMed 780G System Automated for an easier way to stabilise glucose levels.
  21. Medtronic MiniMed 780G System Automated for an easier way to stabilise glucose levels.
  22. Medtronic MiniMed 780G System Automated for an easier way to stabilise glucose levels.
  23. Spirit Pharmacy for people with diabetes
  24. Page 0024
  25. Medtronic Guardian Connect CGM sensor for diabetes
  26. Medtronic MiniMed 780G System Automated for an easier way to stabilise glucose levels.
  27. Page 0027
  28. Desang Magazine, My Diabetes Kit, Charlotte Mitchell the guilty diabetic
  29. Desang Magazine, My Diabetes Kit, Charlotte Mitchell the guilty diabetic
  30. Desang Magazine, My Diabetes Kit, Charlotte Mitchell the guilty diabetic
  31. Diabetes technology education from Diabetes Technology Network DTN
  32. Desang Magazine, My Diabetes Kit, Charlotte Mitchell the guilty diabetic
  33. insulin pump, Dana RS system, artificial pancreas, Advanced Therapeutics UK, CamAPS FX, Dexcom G6
  34. Sue Marshall, Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology
  35. Page 0035
  36. Sue Marshall, Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology
  37. Page 0037
  38. Free Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology
  39. Free Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology
  40. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  41. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  42. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  43. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  44. desang, diabetes diet, diabetic diet, counting carbohydrates, food for diabetes
  45. Desang diabetes kitbags, Desang diabetes diaries
  46. Free Desang Diabetes Magazine, diabetes technology

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