How Diabetes Data Apps Can Improve your Doctor’s Visits
If you use a diabetes data app—like mySugr, Glooko, Sugarmate or Happy Bob—you’re familiar with the trove of insights you can gather about your daily blood sugar patterns.
While this technology can make your day-to-day routine easier, that’s not the only benefit!
Your doctor can also greatly benefit from the addition of diabetes data collected by Bluetooth-connected programs and tracking apps.
Connect and customize your diabetes management
If you use connected diabetes equipment, like a connected blood glucose meter (BGM), continuous glucose monitor (CGM), insulin pen or pump, you are already familiar with the accompanying app designed for it. While these programs are easy to use, they don’t always offer a lot of customization.
There is a range of diabetes management platforms (DMPs), including apps, available that work with or without connected diabetes equipment and can meet your needs and preferences for collecting and analyzing your blood sugar levels day-in and day-out.
DMPs can tell you things like:
- How often your blood sugar is higher/lower than your target range
- How often your blood sugar is within your target range
- The times of day that you most often experience high/low blood sugar
- Your estimated average blood sugar level and estimated A1c
Though it may be an additional tool, a diabetes management platform, whether it’s an online platform or mobile app, can actually reduce the work of tracking your diabetes management.
Your doctor + diabetes data
For example, your doctor might notice you’re frequently experiencing hypoglycemia every day after lunch or that your blood sugar is high when you wake up. Having that real-life data can lead to critical adjustments in your insulin doses and other diabetes medications.
With enough data, your provider can make informed adjustments around insulin dosing, medications, sleep, exercise or food intake.
If you’re new to diabetes data tracking or on the fence about adopting another tool to help you manage your blood sugar, consider the following benefits of data-powered diabetes doctor’s visits.
Streamlining can help you save
The apps designed to work with connected diabetes equipment often communicate directly with your device and seamlessly collect data.
This can make blood sugar management just a little bit easier, giving you the benefit of complete records, without the burden of reminding yourself to keep detailed logs. (Because seriously, who has time for that anymore?)
Seamlessly share data with your provider
With many DMPs, you can transmit your latest data to your healthcare provider via email or other digital systems, print detailed summaries of your data, or simply review the data in your mobile app together at a doctor’s visit.
The ability to instantly share data with your healthcare provider is invaluable.
Don’t wait to make adjustments
You don’t want to wait weeks or months for your next appointment if a recent change in your diabetes management plan has you experiencing dramatic highs or regular lows.
With your DMP data, your doctor can suggest tweaks or adjustments based on real-time information without having to see you again in the office. This allows you to fine-tune your diabetes management, making more beneficial changes, with less lag time.
Many programs even allow you to add detailed notes to specific data points or events, so you can review with your doctor what was going on when you went high or low—or even a day when you were feeling especially good!
Best yet, you won’t have to struggle to remember back to that specific meal or workout weeks or months later when you’re asking your doctor for help.
Your data is always with you
You may occasionally forget to log blood sugar readings or insulin dosing. Luckily, your DMP won’t. Not only does this reduce the amount of thinking you have to do throughout your day, it also helps make the most of your scheduled doctor’s appointments.
Removing the need to keep track of a logbook means you don’t run the risk of accidentally showing up at your doctor’s office without it.
This can save you time and lead to more efficient doctor appointments, making space during your limited time with your provider to address other topics or ask questions that are important to you.
Prevent mistakes like taking a medication twice
Though a DMP can’t manage your diabetes for you, it can reduce some of the mental load associated with monitoring your blood sugar.
Sometimes we forget things! By automatically logging your device data and sending your reminders and alerts, you’re less likely to miss a dose or accidentally double up on your insulin.
Outsourcing some of the work associated with staying on top of your blood sugar management may mitigate the chances of high or low blood sugar and help you feel confident in your diabetes management routine.
Fine-tuning your diabetes care
Maybe you’ve got your diabetes care down. You are feeling good and think your blood sugar management is going smoothly.
This is still a great time to review your diabetes data with your provider. You may have grown accustomed to high morning blood sugar levels thanks to the dawn phenomenon, or you’re regularly high or low around exercise.
There may be room to adjust your routine to meet your blood sugar goals, even when things are feeling pretty good.
It’s also possible your doctor is aware of newly available insulin products that may simplify your diabetes routine and improve your quality of life. By reviewing your data, your provider can make suggestions based on your unique blood sugar patterns, insulin needs and lifestyle.
Definitely consider using a DMP
Having detailed data means less work logging your diabetes routine and a more complete picture for you and your doctor to adjust your diabetes management.
There are so many digital tools available at little or no cost that can streamline your diabetes management and house all your data in one place.
Check out our guide on Diabetes Data Apps to read more about what products and features are available and how they can work for you.
Editor’s note: Educational content related to diabetes management platforms for type 2 diabetes is made possible with support from Lilly Diabetes