Hello beautiful people, you are once more welcome to Your Healthy Life website and the review of an amazing glucose tracer technique called the Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system. We shall specifically know more about the latest CGM systems called the Dexcom G6 system, its features, how it works, its pros and cons, where we can find this product, and not forgetting how it differs from the Blood Glucose Monitoring systems.
What is the Continuous Glucose Monitoring System?
The CGM is a technique that traces glucose levels during the day and night and alerts you for very high or low spikes of your glucose levels. This CGM systems record glucose measurements at regular intervals (24/7) and translate them into dynamic data to reveal glucose direction and rate of change. This makes you properly manage your diabetic treatment.
The Dexcom CGM makes sure that your blood glucose levels are tracked day and night and these readings are later redirected or forwarded to your smart device or receiver every after 5 minutes.
What is the Dexcom G6 CGM System?
The Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring System (Dexcom G6 System) is a real-time, continuous glucose monitoring device indicated for the management of diabetics from the age of 2 and above. The Dexcom G6 system is intended to replace fingerstick blood glucose testing for diabetes treatment decisions.
Results from the G6 system as reported by the company’s website are usually based on the glucose trends and several sequential readings over time. The Dexcom G6 also helps detect episodes of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, facilitating both acute and long-term therapy adjustments.
The Dexcom G6 system also seeks to communicate autonomously with our digitally connected devices, including the automated insulin dosing (AID) systems.
Some Features of the Dexcom G6.
Below are some key features of the Dexcom G6 CGM.
- Two Alert Schedules.
Alerts can be made-to-order for 2 periods of time within 24hrs. For example, day and night schedules.
- Simple Sensor Insertion with an acute Applicator.
One button push insertion.
- No Calibration Required.
No need to calibrate with a glucometer, eliminating the stress from fingerstick.
- Urgent low soon alert.
Receive a 20 minutes warning of a potential severe hypoglycemic event (55mg/dL).
The Dexcom G6 sensor prevents clinically significant interference from acetaminophen.
- Long-life Sensor.
Approved for up to 10 days of use.
Despite these features, the Dexcom CGM keeps further amazing qualities that are very necessary and beneficial for diabetics.
- Zero Fingersticks.
This is the best news ever since the Dexcom has been granted by the FDA to make diabetics treatment decisions without fingersticks or calibration confirmation.
Note that, fingersticks are dependent on diabetes treatment decisions if symptoms or expectations do not match readings.
- Share Your Glucose Data.
The Dexcom share feature found in the Dexcom G6 CGM app helps in sharing your glucose data with up to 10 followers.
- Keeps you in control.
This device has the potential to lower A1C and bring down hypoglycemic incidents. It also helps you detect where your glucose levels are heading.
Dexcom CLARITY Diabetes Management Software.
This constitutes an integrated system for diabetes management. Generally, managing diabetes and diabetics is quite complex and challenging. However, with a special device called the Dexcom CLARITY reporting software, the management and reporting of diabetes data become easier and less stressful.
Dexcom CLARITY Diabetes Management Software is made compatible with your smartphone or computer, and it is an essential part of your diabetes management. Log in with your existing Dexcom account to identify glucose patterns and, with your health care provider, find ways to improve your management.
Your CLARITY data can be connected with your clinic so that review can be done anytime, and even remotely. Enter the code given by your clinic using the Dexcom CLARITY App. All you need to do is tap profile, Authorise sharing, and then follow the instructions. Kindly visit the patient’s sharing instructions if you wish to have more idea on sharing help or only using the Dexcom receiver with your CGM.
The diabetes management software gives you quick access to a variety of reports which facilitates better assessment and understanding of your health insights. Dexcom CLARITY patterns report reveals your patterns of highs and lows at a glance. The patterns report renders your context to the frequency duration and intensity of hypo and hyperglycemia patterns. This prioritizes your diabetes management.
How the Dexcom G6 CGM System Works?
Every 5 minutes, and up to 288 times a day, the Dexcom G6 CGM system provides a real-time look at your glucose readings. Trend arrows and vivid colors displayed on your smart device show you the speed and direction your glucose is heading. Thus, it is easier to make diabetes management decisions.
Summarily, this product operates thus:
Simple Auto Applicator.
This is a single one-touch applicator that easily inserts a small sensor just beneath the skin. Almost all users reported that the auto applicator was very easy to use. All users hailed the easy understanding of the product instructions. 84% of users complained of no pain or minimal pain.
Sensor and Transmitter.
A slim sensor continuously measures glucose levels just beneath the skin, sends data wirelessly to a display device through a transmitter.
This is a small touch screen receiver or compatible smart device that displays real-time glucose data.
Where to find the Dexcom G6 CGM Products.
These products are readily available in your Diabetic Warehouse.
This DexCom Combo Kit Includes:
- 3 – Dexcom G6 Sensors
- Insertion device for each sensor
- 1 Dexcom G6 Transmitter
How to use the Dexcom G6 CGM System.
In the shipping pack, we have 3 packages or boxes and an instruction package. The biggest box has 3 applicator packs. Each applicator has its sensor. The smallest box is the transmitter. The medium box has the Dexcom receiver which can be used alongside your device.
To have a clearer view of these boxes, kindly check them out in your Diabetic Warehouse here.
Setting Up Your G6.
Set up your display device
Insert the sensor and attach the transmitter.
Pair Display device
Complete sensor warm-up.
Sensor (under the skin).
This part is found inside the applicator. We use the applicator to insert the sensor under the skin. We then throw the applicator away. You can’t see the sensor but it measures your glucose level.
This is the second part of the G6 system. After attaching it, it sends or transmits your G6 reading to the 3rd part, the display device (the smart device or receiver).
This is either your smart device of the receiver. You can choose any or both. If you choose both, you will have to start with one.
If you decide to begin with the receiver, you will be asked to enter 2 numbers during set up; the sensor code and the transmitter SN. The sensor code is found on the applicator label. Use only the sensor code from the applicator you are just about to insert. Do not use other codes. The right sensor code lets the G6 reveal your blood glucose level without daily calibration. The transmitter SN is on the transmitter box and at the back of the transmitter. The screen lets you know when to enter each.
Then press and hold the receiver’s power button for a few seconds. The screen walks you through setting up the receiver.
How to insert the sensor.
Part of setting up your G6 is inserting your sensor and attaching your transmitter. Inserting the sensor and attaching the transmitter basically takes a few minutes. Before you begin, get everything ready (applicator, transmitter, alcohol wipes). Choose where to insert your sensor. Your insertion site is based on how old you are. Those above 18 can insert the sensor on their belly. Those from 2-17 years can prefer their belly or upper buttocks. Make sure the insertion point of your sensor should be at least 3 inches from your insulin pump or insertion site. Be careful not to insert sensor in areas with scars, tattoos, or any type of irritations. Also avoid areas that can be bumped or tampered with, like where you may roll on while sleeping, or better still where the seatbelt may land. Also, stay away from bony areas like ribs or hip bones.
Before you insert, make sure everything is properly cleaned. Wash your hands thoroughly with water and disinfect the insertion site with alcohol. Skin adhesives may also be used which are often applied in an oval shape where you are putting the adhesive patch. Make sure none of the adhesives get into the middle where the sensor is inserted.
Next, remove the sensor applicator from its package. The applicator patch has 2 labels. One label has the sensor code you entered while setting up the display device. Remove each without touching the adhesive. Place the applicator horizontally on your skin. Press it firmly and make sure it sticks. Bend and break the safety guard and unlock the insertion button. Insert the sensor by pushing the button, and then lift the applicator away. Finally, your sensor is in.
Attaching your transmitter.
Before doing this, clean its back with alcohol and let it dry. Slide the tap into the slot and then press the transmitter down firmly on its larger end until it clicks into place. Make sure the patch is secured. Rub, using your finger, the adhesive patch 3 times. You are done, you may start using your sensor.
Pairing the Transmitter with the Receiver.
After attaching the transmitter, wait for about half an hour so that the transmitter and receiver pair. Keep the receiver within 20 feet of the transmitter. Once the receiver and transmitter pair up, you can begin your sensor session.
Tap “Start Sensor”.
After confirming your pairing message, you may tap start sensor. This commences the sensor warm-up. You will not receive alerts, alarms, or sensor glucose readings.
Complete Sensor Warm up.
Starting with warm-up, keep your displace device close within 20 feet so that the transmitter can talk to it. During warm-up, the sensor and body are getting to know each other; hence no G6 readings may be recorded on the display device. You will not also get any alert or alarm during warm-up. You can use your glucometer to get your glucose values.
Setting up App.
You can use your app along with your receiver. If you wish to use both, download and use the Dexcom app. Then follow the instructions on the screen to set it up. You will have to enter the Transmitter SN again. You can set your lower and higher alerts to be the same or different from that of your receiver. Your transmitter talks to both display devices through Bluetooth, but the app and receiver speak not to each other. You will have to set and confirm alarm and alert both.
What you see on Screen after warm-up.
You will have to get your first G6 reading. You will also get more G6 readings.
The App’s and Receiver’s home screen displays your current G6 reading, trend arrow, low and high alert levels, and trend graph, and gives you access to settings and optional calibration.
The number with the circle is the most recent G6 reading, updated every 5 minutes. When the background color is grey, it shows that you are within your target range (150mg/dL). The color changes depending on your G6 reading. Red signifies below your target range (50mg/dL). Yellow (228mg/dL) is above your target range.
We also see these colors in the trend graph. The trend graph shows you where to set your target range and also your high and low alert. The colors let you know if you are in your target range. The home screen gives your current G6 reading and also where you were in the last 3 hours. So amazing, isn’t it? Your most recent G6 reading is the white dot on the right.
The arrow in the circle shows where your glucose level is heading. A sideway arrow tells us that glucose level is steady and changes less than 1mg/dL per minute.
Arrows slanting up and down show that your blood glucose level is slightly rising or falling and changes between 1-2mg/dL per minute.
A single arrow pointing up and down shows you are changing faster, 2-3 mg/dL per minute. Double arrows pointing up or down show you are changing really quickly, more than 3mg/dL per minute.
What are Alarms and Alerts and when do you get them?
Moving outside your target range, not only does your circle change to red (eg 76mg/dL) for low or yellow (290mg/dL) for high, your G6 also displays a low or high alert message, vibrates, and sounds. There is an urgent alarm that lets you know if you go below 55mg/dL. The urgent low soon alarm lets you know if you go below 55 within 20 minutes no matter where you are now. This lets you take action immediately to prevent going lower. The urgent low soon alarm helps you make a treatment decision.
How to make a treatment decision?
Is it possible to use the G6 to decide when to eat, dose, or watch a weight?
The G6 can be used to make treatment decisions. However, the glucometer is often replaced with the G6 on the following occasions:
When your symptoms don’t match your G6 readings and when you don’t have the number and an arrow.
What are the symptoms that don’t match G6 Readings?
How do we get our G6 reading back on track?
If you don’t feel right but your G6 reading shows you are on target. You may also feel your glucose is rapidly changing but your arrow shows you are steady. Then be aware that something is not right. You know your body, so listen to it. When in doubt, get a glucometer.
When to Calibrate.
What should you do with your meter?
Wash your hands thoroughly and take a fingerstick. If the meter reading matches your symptoms, keep using it. If you want to align your CGM to your meter, calibrate your G6 by entering that glucometer value into your CGM. Then press confirm. Sometimes, the G6 doesn’t require calibration but you can enter one. Calibration means take a meter value and enter it into your display device.
When you don’t have the number and an arrow.
With the G6, we usually see a number with an arrow. But often, we see a number without an arrow or an arrow without a number or an arrow message on your screen. When there is no number or an arrow, you don’t have enough information to treat using your CGM. Or, there may be a problem with the G6. Whenever you lack the number or an arrow, use the glucometer to treat.
There are times you shouldn’t treat at all. All you need to do is watch and wait. Insulin usually takes time to work. Don’t stack insulin by taking doses too close together. You wouldn’t want to force your blood glucose low by taking too much insulin. Wait for at least 2hrs between doses. Watch and wait. Consult your Health Care Provider to figure out your insulin use rate for a time frame that works best for you.
Trend arrows enable you on how to dose your insulin. If the arrow is up, take more insulin. If the arrow is down, take less insulin. If you get an urgent low soon alert and you have an arrow and a number, you can use your CGM G6 to decide what to do.
If the number reads 80 and an arrow down, the single arrow down means you can be low as 35 in 15 minutes. So you have to act fast. Since you have an arrow and a number, you don’t need a fingerstick for treatment. You rather use your CGM. Also, drink some orange juice as part of your treatment decision. If you are 122mg/dL and an up arrow, you need more insulin because of the up arrow.
Get more information on the Pros and Cons here.
Ending Sensor Session.
Towards the end of your sensor session, the CGM sends you messages to let you know your sensor session is almost over. When you see “Replace sensor now”, it means your sensor session is done. Before starting a new session, remove your transmitter and old sensor. Peel the transmitter holder patch off your skin. Bend and break the lip. Pull the transmitter out of the holder. Throw away the old sensor and keep the transmitter for the next sensor session since it is valid for 90 days.
The mechanism at which the Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system operates has pondered many of its users into amazement and the fact that no fingerstick is done during glucose monitoring is the best news ever as stated by all who embrace this product. It is also a blessing to know more about your diabetic situation and if your data can be shared with your loved ones and Clinicians, then Your Healthy Life strongly recommends diabetics to give a try on this new development. So hurry to your Diabetic Warehouse and make some visitation concerning the Dexcom G6. Also, leave us a comment on your experience while using this product.