How a Continuous Glucose Monitor changed my T1D life!

Before discovering the Freestyle Libre ‘Continuous Glucose Monitor’ (CGM) I kidded myself somewhat that I was doing well enough, that my life and freedom came first, and my diabetes came second. This sort of worked for me. But my HbA1c had crept up from 6.9 to 7.9 over a 4-year period at a very slow, unalarming rate. 7.9 is on the upper side of good aka the lower side of ‘not so good’. Uh oh…was I going to lose even more freedom to T1D?

Fast-forward 3 years, I’d stumbled upon a new technology development called ‘Freestyle Libre’. A device that ejects from a solid plastic medical cannon-like device onto your triceps region. It sits there adhered to the skin with a little filament seeking information from the interstitial fluid in my
arm. It gets this information via ‘wired enzyme’ technology. My layman interpretation …. glucose in the body fluid interacts with an enzyme on the filament. This interaction results in an electron transferring to an electrode that enables measurement of the level of glucose in body fluid. This measurement is then transferred into a signal sent to my phone providing a correlation to my blood glucose level…delivering information to help me be healthier. CGM wearers really are versions of cyborgs.


I can now check my glucose levels 40 times a day rather than the 3 or 4 times that a diabetic does when picking your finger to draw blood is the only option. I can check it every 5 minutes if I want and I do sometimes. It’s fascinating to see the impacts of your choices on your body in such an immediate way. Today I have a more intimate understanding of all my choices on my body and once you have that, it’s a game-changer. To prove that, my HbA1c went from 7.9 to 6.5 in 12 months! Anyone who knows T1D, 6.5 is considered very good (if I say so myself!). But most importantly, I feel
better, I am healthier and have a greater sense of control and freedom.


I am addicted to this technology, to this ever-available information about what’s happening inside. It isn’t a panacea, I still have hypoglycaemic and hyperglycaemic events. I still enjoy a big bowl of chicken katsu curry and fluffy white rice or a plate of lasagna and bear the consequences of that. My
pancreas has malfunctioned and my brain has now assumed the responsibility and is executing the duties of a healthy pancreas, with a little help from CGM’s such as Freestyle Libre and Dexcom as well extrinsic insulin.


The 4 to 7 mmol/L range that we try to adhere to creates a lifelong chess game. It’s our T1D brains with our Libre’s and Dexcom’s vs our blood glucose levels for life (or until a cure). A battle to the death…lol!


The impact that the Freestyle Libre has on the quality of my life cannot be understated and I am so glad for all my T1D friends that these new options are becoming available. I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

Thank you to all the medical scientists, technologists and the community who keep working to advance healthcare and technology, allowing us to better manage T1D and lead healthier lives!

The Not Just a Patch brand is proud to be part of this community and to give back to support those diabetics who need help. You could say we’re proud to help diabetics stick to their dreams.


Lots of Love
Pete

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