I know I promised you all some travel posts, but I’m going to push them back the line a little bit in favor of telling you exactly what’s happening real time in the life of an adhesive-allergic diabetic chick trying to wear a DexCom–making adjustments for my lifestyle adjustments. Now the third day in, I am on my fourth sensor. Why, you may ask, is she on her fourth sensor when four should last at least a month?
-Sensor 1: I attempted to use a tape I wasn’t allergic to to put under my DexCom on my stomach, with a hole in it to put the needle through. Insertion went well, but dancing my heart out at ballroom practice, I realized that apparently the tape of the DexCom only super-adheres [which it really does, lasting through showers and everything for 1-3 weeks for some people!] to skin, and not other tape. So, it came out.
>>DexCom has the MOST fantastic customer service, truly. All I had to do was call and tell them it came out and they immediately sent out a new sensor after a few short questions. The same thing happened when they replaced sensor 2…
-Sensor 2: This time, I put the tape below and above, cutting a hole for the transmitter. But, of course, my luck leads me to have a faulty sensor. Woohoo. So, I took that one out and put in yet another after DexCom even replaced the second one with issues.
-Sensor 3: This just happened. Apparently, I’m still allergic to adhesive of any kind on my stomach. So, I’m going to give up on my stomach for now. It became impractical in tape bulkiness and constant tape replacement after showers, and I’m still itchy. So, like a true multi-decade diabetic, it was time to bend the rules a bit. I immediately got online to see where else people put their sensors, though FDA only “approved wear on the abdomen.” I came across several message boards telling me, pretty blatantly, that for one reason or another [including itchiness!] tummy is not the place of choice. Apparently arms are!
Here’s my problem: ever since I was little, I hated shots in my arms. Never wore my pump there when I had one and still won’t go near ‘em. So, I had a minor internal freak out as I sat on my bed, over stressed by this whole ordeal plus a nasty cough/cold/virus, but determined that enough people do it that it was time I gave it a try. I came across the following blog, and specific post:
Do take some time and read the rest of her blog posts–and follow her on twitter at @txtngmypancreas.
I’ve begun to read her blog, and she’s quite entertaining with a LOT of useful info. Anyhow, the following video showed me how to insert the site with one hand, as I live on my own and am far from ever becoming dependent on other people:
So, I did it. And guess what? It didn’t hurt one bit. Actually less than the stomach. And here’s my thinking behind this whole thing: I saw an allergist who said I’m not allergic to adhesives. So, then, why does my stomach behave this way? Maybe my tummy skin is just sensitive. Here’s to a trial on the arm without any changes to adhesives etc. that might just simplify life and allow me to declare that I have a special tummy, both inside and out. I’ll keep you posted.
I’ve definitely followed this one this week—
Take it easy but take it.
UPDATE! So far, the arm sensor is going well on day 3, readings pretty consistent with meter readings except when I spent some time sleeping on that arm last night…my little robot friend got a bit mad at me and declared my blood sugar to be through the roof! but it wasn’t, so I re-calibrated and readjusted my sleeping position and tah-dah, all set.