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Dexcom Update T1D Living

If you asked me 1 year ago how my diabetes management was going I’d say great! Now looking back, I’d say my management back then was decent, at best. Having a Dexcom has completely changed the way I manage my diabetes.

6 months after getting my Dexcom I wrote a review of my initial thoughts of it. Now, 1 year later I’m following up with another review.

New List of Dexcom Pros & Cons

PROS

My list of pros hasn’t changed too much from when I initially wrote the review. Knowing where my blood sugar is at anytime, anywhere and knowing where it’s heading are all still top notch on my list. What I didn’t anticipate was being able to see how fast certain foods raise by BG.

  1. Seeing the impact that different foods have on my blood sugar.
    Before having a Dexcom I didn’t pay much attention to the rate of speed at which certain foods would hit my blood sugar. No matter the food, I always gave my insulin at the same time. And NEVER EVER gave an extended bolus. Now, having the Dexcom, I can see “oh shit, that food hits me fast” and pre-bolus 20 min before instead of 10 minutes before. Or I may notice that certain foods take longer to impact my BG and wait to bolus until after my meal to avoid a drop or even give half my dose after eating and the remaining dose 1 hour after eating. This insight helps me keep a smooth line around meal times. And who doesn’t want smooth lines?!
  2. Seeing the impact different activities have on my blood sugar.
    After having the Dexcom for a full year and watching how certain activities affect my blood sugar I am able to plan better for them. For example, I know my strength training sessions in the morning typically raise me 30-50mg/dL, but if done in the evening will raise me 50-70mg/dL. I know that an hour walk doesn’t effect me much, unless done directly after a meal. Being able to see how certain activities impact my BG helps me have more confidence in my blood sugar game.

CONS

My list of cons are exactly the same as last time, however for slightly different reasons.

  1. Intimidation of packaging is still top on my list. It doesn’t prevent me from using the Dexcom but it is a definite area that needs improvement. I typically have Justin put on my Dexcom because it takes me a solid 20 minutes to work up the confidence to do it. Plus, depending on where I put it, the angle is hard to do single-handedly. I know I need to own my own diabetes game, but I like to outsource this job.
  2. Could be smaller. Compared to other diabetes gadgets the Dexcom is right in line with size. It’s not bulky by any means, and like my con above, this doesn’t prevent me from using it but I definitely see it as an area for improvement.
  3. Smartphone/smartwach communication is a DEFINITE area of improvement for Dexcom. Currently the only phone that communicates with Dexcom is the iPhone. I have an android, so the switch would be a $700 investment (at least) for me. Another let down is that in order for your apple watch to display your Dexcom results you’d need to carry your phone with you at all times (because your phone would be taking the place of your receiver). This was a surprise to me because the whole appeal of the apple watch was that i’d be able to go on a run (with just my watch) and have my Dexcom communicate directly with my watch. If I need to carry my phone with me in order for my watch to work it kind of defeats the purpose. Of course the watch would be convenient, but not convenient enough, to me, to be worth a $700 investment.

The good news is that Dexcom’s android system is currently set up, the bad news is that it’s waiting in line (a very long line) for approval at the FDA. Dexcom reps say it could take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years for FDA approval.

How to get it

Call your doctor or endo and tell them you’re interested in getting a CGM. I personally haven’t tried any other CGM’s other than Dexcom, but I did a lot of research and personally believe it is the most superior one out there based on its accuracy. But do your research, find the CGM that best fits your needs.

You should also call your insurance company to see if it’s covered and what the cost (if anything) would be.

Once you decide which CGM you want (let’s say it’s Dexcom) your doctor will send the “prescription” to Dexcom (instead of your pharmacy). Dexcom will run it through your insurance and send your 3 month supplies right to your door. I personally have mine set up for automatic renewal which means every 3 months I get supplies delivered to me – otherwise I’d have to call them/they would call me and I’d have to approve the order before they shipped it. Dexcom has great customer service and they are usually on top of calling you when it’s time to renew but in my experience it’s best to stay on top of it yourself to ensure you don’t run out of supplies.

If you’re thinking about getting a Dexcom I highly recommend it. I can’t imagine my life without it now.

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Leave A Comment

  1. Craig June 13, 2017 at 8:44 pm - Reply

    Rachel, thanks for posting your story and experiences with the Dexcom. I am a newbie – I am actually on day 1 of my Dexcom CGM. I have gone too long using the finger-pricking method to test my blood sugars – often in client offices, hiking, or public places (as stealthy as I can be). It feels strange wearing this now but I agree that the benefits will be worth it. I am curious about the placement you have chosen. It seems Dexcom always suggests the abdomen – but do you find that the CGM works on your arm, etc.?

    All the best to you.
    Craig

    • T1D Living June 14, 2017 at 10:33 am - Reply

      Hi Craig! Congrats on your Dexcom!! You are going to LOVE how incredible and helpful having a CGM is. I heard somewhere that Dexcom can only recommend the abdomen because that’s the only place they tested it when it was going through the FDA approval process. So even tho it works just as well on the arms, legs, back, etc. they can’t “officially” say it works there. Not sure how true that is tho because I can’t remember where I heard that from.

      But, my personal favorite spots are on the back of the arms and the top/outter thigh area. I have a few places I want to try next…. calf, forearm, and back – I’ve heard those spots work great!

  2. TF October 30, 2017 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    My endo has been pushing for me to try one for awhile. Their office allows you to try one for a week. I finally caved, however, when I went in I was disappointed to see I was meeting with a Dexcom sales rep. Makes me wonder if the doc is getting a kickback from Dexcom. Anyways, despite that I tried it. I could definitely see the benefits but I had a constant dull pain all week. Do you experience that? Maybe it will just take time or it wasn’t put on correctly.

    • T1D Living November 2, 2017 at 4:04 pm - Reply

      Sounds like you hit a bad injection site. That will sometimes happen. Only once have I pulled it off and started over because it was so uncomfortable. But most of the time I forget where on my body it is 🙂

  3. […] My next step was to get on an insulin pump. Knowing how tight my control needed to be once I got pregnant I decided that a pump would give me the most control. I chose the Omnipod (see my reasons HERE) and it has been one of the best decision I have made in my diabetes management. Right next to getting a CGM (read about my experience with it HERE). […]

  4. […] chickens, diabetes robots are addicting af; you can’t stop at just one. So once I got the Dexcom (read all about that HERE) and realized how helpful a CGM was to my diabetes management I started to entertain the idea of an […]

  5. […] There are a few different different CGMs on the market right now, but I chose Dexcom because of its accuracy. See my review of the Dexcom HERE! […]

  6. […] If you are considering getting the Dexcom check out my initial review of the Decxom G5 and the follow up I did 1 year after having it. […]

  7. […] Dexcom 1 Year Update […]

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