From Abby: SugarStats.
I suck at logging my blood sugars. I've tried so many times to get into a good groove with keeping tabs on my numbers (I even had a logbook with logs on it), but the only time I was really successful was when I was pregnant, and I used the "Kevin" spreadsheet.
But thankfully, logging is possible. And Abby has proven it. She's been using an online service to track her numbers, and she's sharing her experience with it today. Get along, little Loggy.
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Logging. It’s a scary word. It could mean a dangerous occupation of cutting down giant trees and magically turning them into paper products (I have no idea how that works). It could mean using a tiny little book filled with tons of boxes to write down lots of numbers that most 13 year olds [Editor's note: Or 32 year olds] make up two hours before their endocrinologist appointment (been there, falsified that).
Or it could mean SugarStats.
(Sidenote: I use a Minimed pump, so my endocrinologist can download two weeks worth of numbers/insulin when I go to her office, but frankly that’s not really good enough for me. I want to see what happens the other 2.5 months with my diabetes, so I can make changes, or ask her to make changes if necessary. And yes, I’ve used the CareLink program, and hated it.)
I found the SugarStats website from a camp friend who posted it on Facebook, and I decided to give it a shot. I have to admit at first I was very overwhelmed. The site is kind of confusing to navigate (although, I’m fairly un-skilled at such technology things. See: my computer is from 2005 and my phone doesn’t have the internet.) but once I got signed up and started, it wasn’t so bad.
The actual process of logging the numbers is a little time consuming, but they have an “add multiple entries” option which is super sweet, because you can list all your blood sugars at the top, then all of your insulin/medications at the bottom on one page. Easy-peasy.
On day two I was a little annoyed at how many times I check my blood sugar and take insulin, since now I have to type that all in. Fifteen boluses per day is probably a bit excessive. And then on day three, I began to love this wonderful website. Mainly because I have a graph proving that I really am working hard and it’s paying off. [Editor's note: Visual aids for the win.]
Now this is where I might lose you, but stick with me; I'm going somewhere with this. At the moment, I consider myself in pretty good control. My last a1c was 6.7, I rarely go over 200 mg/dl … I’ve hit kind of a good-rut with basal rates and insulin-carb ratios and such, and I thank the dia-gods daily for this success. That being said, I’m still incredibly pessimistic because of years of not-so-successful control.
My endocrinologist actually said to me, “You’re being too hard on yourself! You’re doing a good job!” at my last appointment. And this is where the logging website comes in. SugarStats came into my life at the best time possible. I can now look at my numbers, see that graph, see the color code, and realize that I am doing a good job at managing my diabetes. I have the proof right in front of my face.
But since I’m sure my pancreas is reading this, tomorrow my basals will stop being perfect, and I’ll start seeing crazy graphs, and I’ll get disappointed, and my toes will fall off, etc. However, since I’m logging, and have had this stretch of success, I’ll hold onto hope. I now have one more awesome tool in my bag (tool bag? ... of diabetes supplies? … okay, but only if it's animal print and sparkly) to help me get through the rough times. And to help me celebrate the good times.
Are you on SugarStats? You can follow Abby, and make logging a steady part of your diabetes diet. (I'll give it a try, but I can't make any promises.) Oh, and one last, important note: No one asked Abby to write about this. SugarStats didn't ask or pay ... they're not even aware of this post until ... NOW.