3 Tips For Making Your Child More Comfortable When Testing Their Blood Sugar Levels

Health & Medical Blog

If your child was recently diagnosed with diabetes, you and your child may be apprehensive about performing finger pricks to test their blood sugar levels. If so, use the following tips to help make your child more comfortable when obtaining a sample to test their blood sugar levels.

Alternate Fingers Used for Testing

Depending on the doctor's instructions, you will most likely have to test your child's blood sugar several times a day. The more their fingers are stuck, the sorer they will become. As a result, the next fingerstick in the same area may become very uncomfortable.

To decrease this discomfort and give each finger a rest, alternate the fingertips used for each stick. Doing so gives the previous finger time to heal until its time comes around to be stuck again.

Avoid Sticking the Tips of Their Fingers

Another way to decrease your child's soreness is to avoid sticking the tips or pads of their fingertips. Since these areas have more nerve endings that help with your child's sense of touch, your child will feel the stick more.

Instead of using the tips or pads, use the lancet on the sides of the fingertips. These areas have fewer nerve endings and thicker skin so your child will not feel the stick as much.

Milk the Finger Instead of Squeezing

Once you have stuck the side of your child's fingertips, you will need to extract enough blood to place on the test strip. However, do not squeeze the finger to make the blood drop form, as doing this can pinch the skin and could break the capillaries in the fingertips. This, in turn, would make your child's fingers very sore.

Instead, milk the blood out of the site. You can do this by gently massaging your child's finger, starting at the base. As you work your way up toward the fingertip, a drop of blood should form that is large enough to test with.

If you consistently have problems with obtaining a blood sample large enough for your child's glucose monitor, speak with your pediatric service about your technique. Or you may want to ask for a recommendation for a monitor that requires a small amount of blood to run the test.

Using the above tips while testing your child's blood sugar can help make them more comfortable. Contact a pediatric service that offers blood sugar testing for children to learn more about testing your child's blood sugar, as well as ways to help manage their diabetes.


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