Blood sugar checks are generally done to measure the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood. This examination is mainly done to check type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes, where a person's blood sugar levels increase.
In some cases, blood sugar checks can also be used to test hypoglycemia, when blood sugar levels are too low. Checking and testing blood sugar levels is generally done in a hospital, but now you can also do it at home with special tools. However, to support the accuracy of blood test results, there are some common mistakes that should be avoided. What are those?
A common mistake when checking blood sugar
1. Do not wash hands before checking blood sugar
Before doing a blood sugar test, it is very important to wash your hands beforehand. Even if your hands don't look dirty, you should still wash your hands with soap and water. This is because dirt or other substances that are not visible to your hands, such as the sugar from the fruit you just peeled, risk messing up the results and accuracy of your blood test.
Even a study published in the journal Diabetes Care reveals that there are differences in blood sugar check results by up to ten percent if you haven't washed your hands before taking the test. For those who have a blood test immediately after peeling the fruit, it turns out that the blood sugar is higher. This is thought to be due to the sugar from the fruit left in the finger mixed in in the blood used for the test.
2. Blood taken too little
Generally, a blood sugar test done by taking your blood at the edge of your fingertips will make some people shudder in horror and fear of pain when the needle is inserted into the hand. Not infrequently this makes the blood taken only a little and not enough to be analyzed in the laboratory. Therefore, your blood sugar test results may be inaccurate.
3. Do not press or squeeze the finger too hard
The blood at your fingertips will usually cause warmth. If your fingertips don't feel warm or the blood flow is lacking, the nurse or doctor may advise you to press or squeeze your finger.
However, don't do it too hard. This is feared to cause more interstitial fluid, not your blood.
4. The number of blood samples taken must be
Make sure your blood sample attached to the blood sugar strip is in the right amount, not too little. A small number of blood samples can make the blood sugar test results inaccurate.
Don't add a blood sample to the strip after the first droplet has stuck to the strip. Preferably, collect enough blood samples first at the tip of your finger, then drop them on the strip.
5. Use a blood test strip that has expired
As quoted from HealthCentral, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends not using sheets or test strips that are too long, especially if the test strip is outside the expiration date.
Strips that have expired should be discarded, because if used they can reduce accuracy or disrupt the results of blood tests.
6. After eating a blood test directly
Often, people will check blood sugar half an hour or one hour after eating. However, this is wrong and is not recommended by experts.
This is because checking blood sugar after a meal can give blood glucose results that are too high. It is recommended to check blood sugar two hours after you eat.
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