Come and see us to:
- Learn about Type1 diabetes and optimising your self-management
- Receive education and support for commencing insulin therapy and dose adjustment
- Understand hypoglycaemia, hyperglycaemia, sick day management and driving regulations
- Access and understand blood glucose and ketone monitoring, bolus advisor meters, phone apps and continuous glucose monitoring
- Learn about insulin pump commencement or pump upgrade and ongoing support
In Type 1 diabetes, the pancreas stops making insulin. The body’s immune system destroys the insulin-making cells (beta cells) in the pancreas. The onset of Type 1 diabetes usually occurs in people under the age of 30, but it can happen at any age. About 15% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes are Type 1.
The exact cause of Type 1 diabetes is not yet known, but we do know that it is not caused by poor diet and lack of activity. At this stage, nothing can be done to prevent or cure Type 1 diabetes but scientists are working on finding a cure. It is important to remember, you can live a normal, healthy life with diabetes by learning as much as you can about it and applying some daily self-management practices.
Type 1 diabetes is managed with insulin replacement through lifelong insulin injections using syringes or pen devices with very fine needles or by using an insulin pump. It is also important to follow a healthy diet and eating plan, participate in regular exercise and monitor your blood glucose levels regularly. Each method of delivering insulin is chosen for a particular purpose and based on an individual’s needs.
At Melbourne Diabetes Education & Support we understand that managing Type 1 diabetes can be overwhelming and complex. Our aim is to empower you to live a healthy and fulfilled life with diabetes. We provide complete education on all aspects of managing Type 1 diabetes, including understanding your body, how to use insulin therapy, checking blood glucose and ketone levels, planning for exercise, how to look after yourself when you are unwell, understanding how diabetes complications occur and how to prevent them.
We teach you how to inject insulin, and can facilitate the initiation of insulin pump therapy using the following pumps: Medtronic Minimed 670G, Tandem T-Slim X2, Ypsomed, Accu-chek Solo. We also assist with access to and commencement of blood glucose monitoring, continuous glucose monitoring or flash glucose monitoring. We keep up to date with current technologies and advances in diabetes care and we share this with you as they become available.
Insulin injections and pens
Insulin syringes and insulin pens are currently the most common way of administering insulin. Injection devices are made in different sizes, and the size used depends on the quantity of insulin being injected. To avoid under or over dosing, it is important that you know how to measure the insulin dose in your device. Come and see us to learn more.
The insulin pump is a small battery-operated electronic device that holds a reservoir of insulin. It is about the size of a pager and is worn 24 hours a day. The pump is programmed to deliver insulin into the body through thin plastic tubing known as the infusion set. The pump is worn outside the body, in a pouch or on your belt. The infusion set has a fine needle or flexible cannula that is inserted just below the skin where it stays in place for two to three days.
Only rapid acting insulin is used in the pump. Whenever food is eaten the pump is programmed to deliver a surge of insulin into the body similar to the way the pancreas works in people without diabetes. Between meals a small and steady rate of insulin is delivered.
Insulin pumps are not suitable for everyone. Come and have a chat to us so we can help you decide whether insulin pump therapy is right for you.
See the following links for further information:
- Diabetes Australia
- Diabetes Victoria
- National Diabetes Services Scheme
- Medtronic Diabetes
- Roche Diabetes
- Baker IDI
Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM)
Sometimes performing finger prick blood glucose levels alone does not provide enough information about the fluctuations of your glucose levels through the day and night. Some people also are not able to detect hypoglycaemia (low blood glucose levels) or hyperglycaemia (high blood glucose levels) through symptoms, due to the length of time they have had Type 1 diabetes.
Continuous glucose monitoring involves the use of a device that provides continuous 5-minutely glucose values to your mobile phone or insulin pump (depending on which product you choose). Using these devices means you receive glucose levels in real-time, with the ability to set glucose alerts if your glucose reaches a high or low level. This means you spend more time with glucose levels in the desirable range of 3.9-10.0mmol/L.
Some devices sync with insulin pumps and help decide on how much insulin you need, based on your glucose, or can automatically stop further administration of insulin if your glucose level is heading towards low. The CGM data can also be shared with others such as parents, partners or carers.
From 1 April 2017 people aged under 21 years may be eligible to access free CGM. Our Diabetes Educators can complete your assessment, as well as provide education and training on using CGM. Contact us today to see if you are eligible.
Come and chat to us about whether CGM is right for you.
Flash Glucose Monitoring (FGM)
The Freestyle Libre flash glucose monitoring device can provide a quick and easy option for glucose testing. Using a glucose sensor and reader/meter or mobile phone, you can scan or flash the sensor to receive your current glucose level, glucose trend via a directional arrow and up to the last 8 hours of recent sensor glucose levels.
The readings can be used for insulin dosing, except where symptoms don’t match the scanned reading, or in the case of rapidly changing glucose levels and/or there is a need to treat hypoglycaemia. This device is worn on the back of the upper arm and is waterproof. The sensor can be scanned through clothes for discreet testing. The glucose information can also be shared with others.
Come and chat to use about whether FGM is right for you.