Very soon after being diagnosed I realised that hardly any diabetic’s kit is one and the same. From the insulin used through to the measuring equipment it seems there are unlimited combinations when it comes to treating diabetes, which I find weirdly fascinating.
I thought I would share my setup with you as I’m guessing you might be as interested as me in how other people treat their condition but also in the hope that others may share theirs with me.
What’s In My Diabetic Survival Kit?
Let’s start with that sweet, sweet insulin. I have Novorapid for my bolus dose and Lantus for my basal dose. My bolus dose ranges from anywhere between 3 – 6 with most meals and my basal dose has been at a steady 20 units pretty much since I got diagnosed. Alongside that I’ve got a few trusty needles (which I definitely do use more than once despite knowing why I shouldn’t. Who wants to carry around loads of used needles all the time?!)
What’s your bolus and basal dose? How many units do you often take for each?
Then we’ve got my tester. As much as I would like one I don’t qualify for a CGM on the NHS, partly due to my NHS area and also because I am told my control is ‘too good’ (as my HBAC is in range). Really not knocking the NHS, in fact I am so grateful it and everyone in it, but I’m not sure how I feel about not being able to get my hands on a CGM.
Anyway, what I can get my hands on is an Accu-Chek Mobile which is pretty fucking awesome all told. It’s really simple to use, has very easy to replace testing cassets and lancets (both pictured) and amazing battery life (backup batteries also pictured) I very rarely have to retake a test using it which is another plus. It’s the size of a small phone, and a little thicker, so easily fits in my pocket if I need it to.
I plug all my testing and dosing data inro OneDrop which I have been using pretty much from the day I was diagnosed. My diabetic nurse, and specialist, both recommended I keep track using a notebook but that just wouldn’t work for me.
Apart from a hickup about a year ago where the app had issues with Facebook connectivy OneDrop has been a pretty much foolproof way for me to track my BG and insulin dosage. Since I got my Apple Watch (more on that below) it also tracks my activity data, although I don’t find that particularly useful. It can also track my carb intake if I bothered to do that.
What do you use for testing? If you have a CGM, how do you find it?
Then finally, we have my series 3 Apple Watch. I only got this about a month or 2 ago and I have included it here because it helped me make a big positive shift in how I manage my diabetes.
Honesty time with you guys, before I got my Apple Watch I had go really lazy with recording my results. For the first 3 years of my diagnosis I recorded every single result using OneDrop on my iPhone. I. Did. Not. Miss. A. Single. One.
And then about 6 months ago I kind of just stopped, almost over night. I honestly couldn’t tell you why, it was probably laziness more than anything, probably a bit of complacency too. But whatever caused it, it wasn’t good. Getting my Apple Watch changed that though as recording my BG and insulin dosage is as easy as 3 taps on it’s screen as OneDrop has an Apple Watch app.
This means I have now gone back to having full visibility across my BG and dosage (although not as much as I would with a CGM!) which is another positive step back in the correct direction!
How do you track you BG over time? Do you have any tips for making sure you don’t forget or get lazy with your measurement?
Then finally, we have the trusty old glucose tabs. Love these ones as they come in the handy plastic tubes and you can order a bulk pack off Amazon at a reasonable price. However, these are for emergencies and when I’m a bit stuck. I’ve written a whole piece on the best foods to eat to correct a hypo as, let’s be honest, we have to put up with a lot of shit as diabetics and we may as well use correction as an opportunity to eat something nice!
So there you have it, here’s the kit that saves my life on a daily basis! (Bit dramatic, but also true…) What does yours look like?