What You Need to Know: Glucose Test Strips 101

Glucose test strips are an accurate and fast way to check your blood sugar on the go. Whether you’re watching your blood sugar temporarily or as a long-term part of your diabetes care plan, glucose test strips are your front line of information. This guide provides basic answers to the most commonly asked questions about glucose test strips.

Do you need a prescription for glucose test strips

The answer to this question is a little complicated. The short version is no, you don’t need a prescription for glucose test strips. The strips themselves aren’t a controlled substance.

However, some insurance policies will cover glucose test strips as part of your necessary medical equipment. The policy changes from plan to plan, but some insurance companies will cover part or all of the cost. If you want to have your insurance company foot some of the bill, then you will have to get a prescription for them. This is a very normal part of the process, and your doctor’s office should have no problem providing you with a prescription if you need one.

Even if your insurance might cover part of the cost of your test strips, it makes sense to shop around. Sometimes you can pay out of pocket online for less than your co-pay through a pharmacy. Comparison shopping will help you decide if it makes sense to seek out a prescription for your glucose test strips or not.

How many glucose test strips do you need a day

There isn’t one solid answer to this question. On average, people with diabetes test their blood sugar at four regular intervals through the day. However, this number can easily go much higher. If you feel “off” or suddenly ill, the first thing you should do is test your blood sugar. For diabetics who are trying to establish regular blood sugar levels or find patterns, testing more times per day could help with that. Your doctor may have a specific number of times they want you to check.

For well-controlled diabetes, estimate a need for five test strips per day. The days that you only need your regular checks will give you a small surplus for days when you need to check more frequently. If your diabetes is not well-controlled, only your doctor will have an idea of how much you could need.

How to pay for test strips and how many you need are the most common concerns of people new to checking their blood sugar. Glucose test strips are a recurring medical expense that some insurance plans will cover. Once your diabetes is under control, you can count on as few as four or five strips per day. At times, however, you could need more.

Why Ketone Test Strips are the Best Way to Track Your Ketones

Ketone tracking is the best way to know whether or not your ketogenic diet has taken effect yet. Humans, by default, burn carbs to get our energy. When we switch to a low carb or ketogenic diet, we burn fat for energy instead. Understandably, this helps considerably with weight loss. Unfortunately, extremely high ketone levels can be dangerous. While most people will never approach a dangerous level, testing your ketones while on a ketogenic diet is a good idea. There are three ways you can do this, but using ketone test strips to check your urine is the best for long-term diets. It’s also a little easier on your wallet.

Track over the course of the day

Ketones are byproducts of your body burning fat. When you’re on a diet intended to boost fat burning, ketones are expelled through your breath and urine and carried in the blood. Testing your breath or your blood will tell you what your ketone level is at the time tested. Testing your urine will give you a more general impression.

Urine isn’t produced when it’s expelled. Instead of reading your ketones at the current moment, you get a more averaged reading of your day as a whole. If you have high ketones and are worried about it becoming dangerous, that can be a bad thing. If you’re trying to monitor how your ketone levels are doing as an estimate of how well your diet is working, it’s much more useful to get the big picture. On average, how was your day?

For the most accurate readings, you should measure your ketones at the same approximate time every day, and after the same types of activities. You’ll have a different reading during the morning than you would at night, for example. It doesn’t really matter when you test, so long as it stays consistent from day to day.

Low cost

Ketone test strips are the most affordable way to regularly measure your ketone levels. Blood reading is the most accurate, but the blood strips are much more expensive than the urine strips. Testing through blood can set you back $5-$10 per strip! On the other hand, testing your breath doesn’t require an ongoing cost at all. You simply have to buy the testing unit. Unfortunately, these units can run $300 or more. If you’re not sure if a ketogenic diet is going to work for you long term, there’s no need for you to invest that much money up front.

Ketone test strips combine affordability and function into one package. You can get a feel for your average ketone level during the day and see if your diet is working. At the same time, the lower cost means you can try it out without committing to too much at once.

Five Situations Where Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry Keeps You Nourished

nutrition photo
Photo by ShiaFner

Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry 8 oz Bottle Ready to Use is a nutritional supplement condensed into an easily drinkable portion. Whether you’re going through a temporary battle with lack of appetite, you don’t have time to eat on the job, or your protein is slow, supplementing with Oral Supplement Boost High Protein Creamy Strawberry is a great solution. Stay healthy, get nourished, and enjoy your supplement.

1. Meal replacement

Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry is a great way to fill in for a meal that you can’t take. If your busy day doesn’t always include a stop for lunch, this could be the solution. Instead of dealing with hunger all day, drink a supplement for lunch. This will help combat feelings of hunger and give your body the fuel it needs to keep running smoothly.

2. Controlled calorie input

If you and your doctor have decided on a plan to limit calorie input, talk to them about adding a nutritional boost. Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry is made to very exacting standards. There’s no guesswork in the number of calories you’re getting. There’s always some guesswork when you cook at home—this method brings your calorie portions down to a science.

3. Short term nutritional boost

In the short term, Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry can even serve as an entire diet. Talk to your doctor before beginning such a diet, or if you have an ongoing loss of appetite. For short term, known-cause loss of appetite, an oral supplement could be the best option. People recovering from the flu or similar illnesses often find a mildly flavored food the best they can keep down. Choosing an oral supplement for this ensures that the mild, easily digested food is nutritionally complete.

4. Appeals to a picky palette

Creamy strawberry is a mild, pleasant flavor that can appeal to someone with a very picky palette. Children and those sensitive to tastes and smells can enjoy this supplement when stronger flavors are rejected. If chronic pickiness is resulting in malnutrition, using a nutritionally complete supplement could be the best way to combat the issue.

5. Inadequate protein intake

Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry is formulated to be extremely high in protein per volume. If your diet is lacking in protein, boosting this with Oral Supplement Boost is a great way to jumpstart your protein intake. Simply changing your regular diet can prevent inadequacies from forming again, but a protein boost needs to happen quickly to begin correcting the deficiency.

Oral Supplement Boost® High Protein Creamy Strawberry comes in ready to use, 8 oz bottles. It’s perfect for a meal on the go, when you don’t have time for anything else. It’s also great for winning over a picky palette or tender stomach. This nutritionally complete shake can get your body back in top shape faster than correcting your diet alone.

Benefits of Using PhenylAde

smoothie photoPhenylketonuria (PKU) is a rare inherited disorder that causes buildup of an amino acid known as phenylalanine (PHE). This disorder is caused by a defective gene that creates the enzyme needed to break down PHE. The absence of this enzyme causes a dangerous buildup can occur in a person with PKU every time they ingest high protein foods. In order to prevent this dangerous buildup, people who suffer from PKU need to follow a specific diet that restricts phenylalanine. Here are some ways that PhenylAde dietary supplements can help those with PKU successfully manage their diet.

 

Diet

In order to live a safe and healthy life, those who suffer from PKU have to carefully monitor what they eat. This can pose as an extremely difficult task. It can be hard to know what foods to eat and what not to eat while still trying to get a healthy amount of protein. PhenylAde helps those with PKU follow their dietary adjustments successfully. PhenylAde is the most recommended dietary supplements in the PKU market. It helps those with PKU live a healthy lifestyle without having to worry about getting enough protein or eating the wrong foods. If those with PKU eat too much protein, the damage can be substantial. It helps to simplify the dietary restrictions that come with PKU.

 

Taste

Some people struggle with staying on a restrictive diet because the dietary supplements don’t taste the best. Living with dietary restrictions doesn’t have to be tasteless.  PhenylAde helps people stay on track by offering several tasty flavors to choose from. There is a flavor to fit anyone’s taste preference. PhenylAde offers supplements in chocolate, orange crème, strawberry, unflavored, and vanilla. These flavors can be mixed to create a wide variety of different flavors. Many people that have used PhenylAde have come up with masterful concoctions to make their daily dose both tasty and nutritious. It is hard to find a dietary supplement that holds both quality nutrition and tastefulness.  PhenylAde takes the blandness that comes with traditional dietary supplements and makes it a delicious treat.

 

No cure has been found for phenylketonuria. PKU can be frustrating and challenging because of the crucial dietary restrictions. PhenylAde helps take the frustration out of having a dietary restriction. PhenylAde makes eating with PKU both safe and delicious. Remember that before trying a new dietary supplement you should always check with your health care provider.

 

 

 

 

Picking the Right Autoclave

autoclave photo
Photo by perpetualplum

An autoclave is an important element in making sure that instruments are cleaned and sterilized. Autoclaves are a strong, heated container that is used for chemical reactions and other processes that require high pressures and temperatures. Primarily, autoclaves are used to sterilize instruments. Sterilization equipment is often on the expensive side, so be certain to invest in the correct autoclave for your needs. Here are some things to keep in mind to successfully pick the right autoclave.

Size

The size of the autoclave depends on how much space is available in your designated sterilization area. You don’t want to purchase one that is too big to fit, but you also don’t want to choose one that is too small to accommodate your load sizes. To determine the minimum size needed to accommodate your instruments, simply measure your longer instrument. This way you will know how small of an autoclave you can buy that will still hold and sterilize your longest instrument.

Cycles

Different instruments require different cycles to meet sterilization requirements. Two types of cycles are pre-vacuum and gravity. Pre-vacuum autoclaves suck the air out of the chamber so that the steam can properly penetrate the load’s items. This type of autoclave works well with porous instruments.  Gravity autoclaves don’t remove the air. They instead introduce steam into the upper portion of the chamber and force that air down into a drainage system at the bottom of the chamber. Gravity autoclaves tend to work better with non-porous items.

New or Used?

Autoclaves can be expensive. Picking between new or used depends on how financially comfortable you are. Autoclaves can last up to several decades, so buying a new one is definitely worth the investment. However, if a new autoclave is out of your budget range, used ones are still a viable option. Just make sure that the buyer is trustworthy and that the autoclave is in working condition.

Another thing to keep in mind when choosing between new or used autoclaves is the warranty. Does the warranty cover both parts and labor? How long does the warranty last? These questions can help ensure that you are getting the best deal before purchasing. While most used autoclaves come with a warranty, it usually does not last as long as the warranty on a new one.

Replacement Parts

An important thing to keep in mind before purchasing an autoclave is whether or not the parts are easily accessible. Because you plan to use your autoclave for a long time, you want know that replacement are available and easily accessible. You also want cost-efficient replacements parts in case anything ever breaks. This ends up saving you time and money in the long run.

Picking the right autoclave is important to having properly sterilized tools that are up to standard. It’s important to keep in mind the size, cycle types, whether you want new or used, and if the replacement parts are easily accessible. By going through these points, you can successfully pick out the right autoclave for your establishment.

Picking the Right Gloves for Lab Work

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Photo by UNMEER

Gloves are an essential item to any lab, but how do you choose the right ones? Gloves in the lab not only have to protect the lab worker’s hands from harmful chemicals, but they also need to not harm the wearers. Each type of glove has their strengths and weaknesses. The right glove depends on the type of lab work being done. There are low, medium, and high risk lab work. Low risk lab work involves no blood or bodily fluid, medium risk lab work involves blood and bodily fluid, and high risk lab work involves harmful chemicals and diseases such as HIV. From latex gloves to nitrile gloves, here’s how to pick the right gloves for your lab.

Knowing the Different Options

To pick to right glove, you must know which options are out there. Latex gloves are a common choice of glove because they can be used in low, medium, and high risk labs. Latex gloves are known for a snug and comfortable fit, while providing strength and barrier protection. They are also fairly cheap in comparison to their alternatives, nitrile gloves. These gloves are a popular alternative to latex gloves because they are known for being tear and chemical resistant. Neoprene gloves are another alternative to latex gloves. They feel similar to latex gloves but tend to be more expensive. Vinyl gloves are an economical alternative to latex gloves. However, vinyl gloves are more susceptible to tears and breakage which makes them less than ideal for medium or high risk labs. However, vinyl gloves are a good latex alternative for low risk lab work. All of these gloves have their own strengths and weaknesses. The right gloves depend on the substances that are being worked with.

Substances

To pick the right gloves, you must assess which substances will be involved in your lab work. The substances determine which kinds of gloves you can wear and eliminates others that simply won’t do. Lab work that does not involve blood or bodily fluid contact are considered low risk labs. Vinyl or latex gloves are good options for these sorts of labs. Labs that involve blood or bodily fluid are considered medium risk labs. Latex, neoprene, or nitrile gloves are good options for these sorts of labs. They are also durable enough to be used in high risk labs that involve infectious diseases such as HIV or labs that involve harmful chemicals. Most gloves are durable enough to be used in low, medium, and high risk labs, however, latex and nitrile gloves tend to be the most popular choices.

Latex gloves were the staple gloves in labs for several years. However, with the heightened awareness of latex-allergies, there is now more of a variety to choose from when choosing gloves for your lab. Latex gloves can be used for almost any type of lab, but can do more harm than good if any users have a latex allergy. Knowing if any of the people participating in the lab work have allergies is crucial to picking the right glove for lab work. If anyone in the lab has latex-allergies, there are several alternatives. Vinyl gloves can be used as an alternative to latex gloves in low-risk labs and neoprene and nitrile gloves can be used as an alternative to latex gloves in low, medium, and high risk labs.

Picking the right gloves is crucial to keeping lab workers safe. In order to pick the right gloves for lab work, you must know the different glove options, keep in mind which substances are going to be used in the lab, and know if any latex-allergies are present.

Keeping Loved Ones Safe with Ambulatory Equipment

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wheelchairs

When loved ones reach a certain age, they require a little extra help getting around. The right ambulatory aids ensure they do not give up on doing the things they want to do, and that they maintain a high quality of life. Ambulatory equipment, like walkers, scooters, and wheelchairs, keep loved ones safe as they move around both inside and outside their homes. It’s simply a matter of matching the right piece of equipment to the right situation.

Walkers


If your loved one is still able to get up and move around, but you’re worried about falls, a walker is your best option. Walkers are all about balance. Although a loved one may have the muscle mass to support themselves, their balance often deteriorates before strength. This leaves individuals with sudden bouts of dizziness, and it’s all too easy to overbalance and fall. Loved ones transitioning into decreased muscle mass and balance can keep a walker folded up in a closet, or beside a bed. It will be there when they need it, but it won’t interfere with their lifestyle when they don’t.

Walkers also function as canes mixed with crutches. If your loved one has a joint condition that makes walking painful, they can use a walker to remove some of the pressure from their lower body by supporting themselves with their arms. They retain the dignity of walking with a dramatically lowered risk of falls.

Scooters


For loved ones who face many challenges when they walk, a scooter could provide an easy way to restore mobility without adding risk. Although many individuals who use scooters still walk reasonably well over short distances, scooters allow loved ones to take trips outside, through stores, and on vacations without worry. Scooters also make carrying items easier, which is a major concern for many aging individuals. It’s impossible to safely carry a shopping bag and use a walker at the same time. Scooters are easy to modify with baskets and storage bags and simplify daily life without compromising safety.

Wheelchairs


As loved ones age, they often need extra help, and a wheelchair allows them to travel with dignity, even if they need some assistance. Those with sufficient upper body strength can still move around with relative ease. It’s simple for an assistant to offer help when needed, too.

Wheelchairs work well with other ambulatory equipment. It’s a good idea to keep one on hand in case of a fall or accident, especially when loved ones temporarily lose their powers of independent mobility. Wheelchairs fold up well and store neatly. Sometimes a loved one may just be having a tiring day, or wants to go on an outing that exceeds their stamina. In either case, a handy wheelchair allows them to press on despite fatigue.

Which piece of ambulatory equipment would most benefit your loved ones? Are they transitioning between these phases? Regardless of what aids they use, make sure to consider safety first. With a walker, scooter, or wheelchair, loved ones can get out and do more, and they will be much safer at the same time.

 

Three Reasons to Consider Disposable Lab Coats

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disposable lab coats

Do you struggle to maintain your sanitation standards? Have your lab workers struggled with accidental contaminations from materials no one remembers bringing into the lab? These may be signs that you should reconsider cotton lab coats. Disposable lab coats provide a more sanitary option, and they’re more affordable in the long run, especially if you adhere to strict cleanliness standards. Below, we go into more detail about why cotton lab coats may cause sanitation, appearance, and budget problems.

Sanitation


The fact is, cotton lab coats simply aren’t as sanitary as disposable lab coats. Any material you have to wash has an increased potential of carrying residue and contaminants that could compromise patient health or lab work. Even residual detergent can cause issues. Once a cotton lab coat has been contaminated, it’s essentially impossible to completely clean, which is a massive problem in a laboratory or clinical environment. It simply doesn’t make sense to choose a reusable garment as a piece of PPE to protect against splashes and contamination.

Appearance


In order to maintain any level of sanitation, a cotton lab coat really needs to be washed on a daily basis. If the coat comes into contact with any form of hazardous material, it will need to be washed even more often. Still, unless every doctor and lab worker keeps an entire closet of back-up coats on-hand, chances are high they will have to wear over-washed, frayed, or stained lab coats on occasion. This looks tremendously unprofessional. Even if someone spills a bit of salad dressing on the lab coat, they will leave a stain. Materials caught in the fabric of the lab coat also increase the likelihood of contamination. It’s an endless cycle of the lab coat fulfilling its use, and then becoming unfit to serve that purpose again.

Cost Efficiency


The fact that lab coats are designed to protect the clothes and skin underneath mean they really ought to be disposable in the first place. A cotton lab coat that is used as a lab coat will become stained or contaminated on a regular basis, and it will never be as pristine as it was when it was first worn. In order to maintain a professional appearance, medical professionals would need to replace even well-made cotton lab coats fairly frequently. They are not necessarily constructed or priced as disposable items, however. This will begin weighing down a budget very quickly.

Disposable lab coats do not carry contaminating materials between patients or lab processes, because they are only designed to be worn once. They are also priced to be worn once. They are simultaneously the most sanitary and the most affordable option. While cotton lab coats have their uses, they are fairly impractical as actual lab coats.

Disposable lab coats simplify sanitation procedures, protect patients, and improve your professional appearance. The fact that they are more cost efficient only increases their worth. Take the opportunity to consider your budget and your commitment to sanitation. You may find that cotton lab coats don’t fit into either.

Four Reasons to Use Huggies Little Movers for Daytime Wear

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Huggies Little Movers are great for babies on the go. Whether it’s squirming, crawling, or standing, Huggies Little Movers offer superior protection perfect for daytime play. They’re built to move. They also combine easy changing with fitted shaping so leaks are a thing of the past. That’s why Huggies Little Movers are great for daytime wear.

1. Built to move

At night, your baby is going to be sleeping peacefully and not moving around much. That’s the hope, anyway. As different as your reality may be, it will pass. Eventually, you’re going to see that your baby has two different needs. Their nighttime diapers have to be ultra-absorbent and built to hold a lot. Their daytime diapers have to be built to move. With all the squirming, kicking, standing, crawling, and wiggling that your baby is doing they need a diaper that can move with them.

2. Reinforced leg and waist fit

Besides a flexible material, Huggies Little Movers are reinforced in the leak zones. These diapers come with a snug fit around the leg holes and around the waist. This makes it much more likely that any big surprises are going to stay contained. Due to the amount of flexibility and movement the diaper is designed to accommodate, the reinforced legs and waist ensure that it still does its primary job: keep your baby clean, dry, and comfortable.

3. Easy to slip on and off

Many babies who wear Huggies Little Movers are able to stand. In fact, they’re not just able, they’re eager to! Getting a moving baby to lay down long enough to be changed can be a challenge. Many Little Movers are designed to be slipped on. Your baby can stand or lean on you and you can slip the diaper up and secure it in place. Once day they’ll be using much the same motion to put on training underpants and then your diaper days will be behind you! Until then, Huggies Little Movers will be there to shorten the down time between play sessions with their easy slip shape. Don’t fear, though. Once the diaper is in place, the reinforced legs and waist kick in. They’re easy for an adult to manage, not so simple for a baby to squirm out of!

4. Liquid locked for maximum protection

Huggies uses a “liquid locking” formulation to ensure that your baby stays dry and comfortable all during daytime play. This extra-absorbent material draws liquid away from the surface of the diaper and holds it deep inside. This keeps your baby’s skin drier and reduces skin rash and physical discomfort. Huggies Little Movers are great for daytime play because they won’t let skin irritation slow your baby down.

Huggie Little Movers are great for daytime wear. Their liquid locked protection keeps your baby dry. It also teams up with the reinforced leg holes and waist band to keep accidents inside, not outside, the diaper. The flexible material of Little Movers is made to follow your baby wherever they wiggle, crawl, or squirm.

The Role of Sterile Water in Patient Care

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sterile water

Water is an essential part of patient care, and while regular drinking water and bathing water can go through regular filtration processes, the water in IV bags is another story. IVs and other systems that send fluids directly into the bloodstream require sterile water. Just as surgical instruments require special sterilization techniques and equipment, so does the water that is put into the bloodstream. Sterilizing water, however, is no easy process. Keeping it sterile is an even greater challenge.

Risks of Regular Fluids

Tap water, even after thorough filtration, contains trace elements of compounds that should never be put into the bloodstream. Transferring water from a faucet to an IV bag without creating dangerous bubbles is next to impossible. Simple exposure to air can ruin sterile water. The fact that IVs contain not only water, but medicine, also complicates the issue. It’s possible for the tiny imperfections in tap water to interfere with the other contents of an IV, jeopardizing the patient’s treatment and life.

Unlike scalpels and other surgical tools, there is no efficient way for hospitals, clinics, and first responders to sterilize their own water. The sheer amount of water required for just the IVs in a hospital would make small systems useless, anyway. Bottled or bagged sterile water is the only sure way to avoid contamination.

Sterile water isn’t just clean. Since it’s going into the bloodstream directly, thereby bypassing the body’s natural filters and digestive safeguards, it cannot contain any antimicrobial or bacteriostatic elements. These would harm the patient. Sterile water must also be hypotonic and nonpyrogenic in order to serve as an irrigating fluid.

The Best Brand and Packaging Options

It’s important to only buy sterile water from trusted brands. While standards for tongue depressors are kept relatively low, anything that comes into direct contact with the bloodstream must meet strict guidelines. Although many medical centers have preferred brands, B. Braun is one of the most reputable sterile water providers available.

Sterile water from B. Braun comes prepackaged in IV bags ready for use. These environmentally friendly bags are all non-toxic and biodegradable, so they won’t linger in landfills for eternity. Sterile water has a number of uses, and some sellers ship it in bottles. While this may work well for a few uses, IV bags ought to be sealed in advance in order to keep the contents safe and sterile. Ease of use also weighs in the packaging’s favor, since time is always of the essence in a busy medical environment.

STERILE WATER FROM B. BRAUN

IV fluid can never come from a tap, and it’s a poor decision to pour it from a bottle. The chances of contamination are all but assured, and any patient can easily die from contaminants in their bloodstream. The best option is to purchase pre-sealed IV bags complete with sterile water. Companies like B. Braun, provide exceptional service and superior products that are far more trustworthy than anything you can get from a tap or bottle. Medical facilities rely on the highest safety standards for their products in order to protect patients. B. Braun’s sterilized water is the best and easiest choice.