Living with diabetes is a full-time job and one we never applied for. It can be mentally exhausting and emotionally and physically draining. I know I am always looking for any tips or tip-offs that can help me with my diabetes management–whether it be technology, travel perks, or even a new app that tells me to get my act together.
I asked the diabetes online community to share any and all fun tips and tip-offs that can help make our lives a little bit easier and enjoyable.
Here are the top 9 diabetes hacks that the diabetes online community shared:
1. Restarting Dexcom Sensors
Did you know that you can extend your Dexcom G6 sensors beyond the 10-day cut off? There are quite a few ways to go about it depending on your transmitter code. You can find the right method to use here. This will save you a few pricks and pokes and some money too.
2. Free Admission to National Parks
People living with diabetes (or any other condition that falls under disability) can apply for free lifetime access to US national parks. You can obtain your pass through the mail which involves a $10 dollar processing fee, or you can get it in person to avoid the extra charge. This is a great perk that everyone should take advantage of at some point in their lifetime!
3. Sulli the Diabetes Guru
Roche Diabetes Care created a voice-activated assistant in the homes of people living with diabetes. This virtual source of support and information is available around the clock and free of charge on Amazon Alexa and on Google Assistant. Sulli the Diabetes Guru responds to important questions like “What is high blood sugar?”, “Is it okay to eat before my blood test?” as well as sets reminders to take medication and can even tell you where to find the closest blood monitor retailer!
4. Lilly Diabetes Journey Awards
Did you know you could receive a medal for your valiant effort of managing your diabetes? This program recognizes people who have managed their type 1 diabetes successfully with insulin for 10, 25, 50 and 75 years. Each recipient receives a beautiful award, engraved with their name, along with a signed letter from Lilly’s CEO, Dave Ricks, acknowledging and encouraging their continued dedication. This program helps celebrate each other’s victories and hopes to inspire others living with diabetes.
People living with type 1 diabetes or parents of children with type 1 diabetes in the United States can complete and submit the Lilly Diabetes Journey Awards application here. If you are outside the United States and are interested in learning more about Lilly programs in your country, please contact your local Lilly aﬃliate for more information.
Lilly also offers other programs such as their Lilly Camp Care Package program, which provides diabetes educational kits, inspirational speakers, insulin, and other supplies to camps for children with diabetes. Lilly also offers college resources after partnering with The College Diabetes Network. CDN realizes that campus life and independence can be hard enough without diabetes. They created a community for young adults living with diabetes through its national network of campus-based chapters and their resources available on their website.
5. Ask Siri for Your Glucose Reading
If you are using a Dexcom CGM, you can take advantage of Siri and ask her any time of the day, “What is my blood sugar?” and she will take the reading from your Dexcom and say it out loud. This has become incredibly useful when I’m driving or don’t have the time to unlock my phone and go to the Dexcom app.
6. Happy Bob App
This app takes mundane diabetes data and turns it into an engaging and positive experience for the user. You can switch between Happy Bob and Snarky Bob to get a different dose of entertainment. Both of which will help ease the stress of this disease and leave you with a smile!
7. Dexcom Overlay
Did you know that Dexcom offers free over-patches to help reinforce the adhesive? There are plenty of great companies out there that offer this as well but be sure to take advantage of this free offer and see how it works for you and/or your child. You can submit a request using this form.
8. Preboarding Before a Flight
As people living with diabetes, we are allowed to preboard all flights. This is helpful to get your luggage in a safe space and make sure you have time to access any supplies or snacks before the plane gets crowded and it’s more difficult to move around. This will help set you up for a comfortable and relaxing flight. Read here for more information on air travel and what you need to know.
9. Sugarmate App
Sugarmate is a companion app for those using Dexcom G5/G6 and boasts many great features such as apple watch integration, will call you if your CGM goes low, and is ignored, even if it is in the Do Not Disturb mode. The newest feature if you own a car with CarPlay and connect your phone, your blood sugar will automatically display on your screen.
Make sure to take advantage of these above diabetes hacks to make living life with diabetes a little easier. Many of the above tips can help change your mindset, improve your mood, and give you a little motivation to keep on thriving.
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