Advice on Preparing to get a Dexcom

I have decided I want to take the plunge & get a Dexcom system. I want to be well prepared so I'm asking for suggestions on what I should read or good videos on sensor insertion & anything else you think would help me.

I only did a bit of research before I took the plunge. I watched a few videos on inserting it, and the first time will be a little nerve racking. I am so happy with mine. I do not have to set alarms to wake me to check my bs during the night. Both the pump (9yrs) and my Dexcom (2mo) made a big change in my life of 50 years with diabetes. If I had to give one of them up it would be the pump. I know I shock lots of people with that one, but I love my Dexcom. Some people hate the alarms, I LOVE them. So everyone is different. It gives you a better look at the highs and lows. Can't wait to see what my A1c is next mo. I know there will be a difference.
Good Luck, and keep us posted.

I would start by reading the Dexcom Users’ Guide from cover to cover. It’s available online in pdf format. You can also search YouTube for some Dexcom sensor insertion videos. Dexcom usually offers one-on-one help form one of their trainers to get you started. I was impatient to wait for that help and just jumped right in with the help a YouTube video.

One of the more important concepts that you need to understand is that the sensor number lags the fingerstick number by about 15 minutes. Dosing off of the Dex when the number is moving quickly can get you into some trouble. You can do this when your line is relatively flat but you need to be aware of this. The manual will tell you to always fingerstick before adding insulin or food.

I love my Dexcom CGM and would find life harder without it. Good luck!

I forgot to mention the data. I’m a data nerd and I regularly upload the Dex along with my meter and pump to do what’s called “retrospective analysis.” That’s just a fancy name for learning from the past to make your future better.

I’ve learned a ton about insulin therapy by doing this. I’ve also found for me that the mere act of observing the data makes me want to make it better. It motivates me to improve in a stealth fashion.

I use both the Dexcom Studio software (PCs only, boo!) and the online web-based site Diasend. They’re both useful for their own reasons.

I know I am in a decided minority when it comes to using retrospective data. Most CGM users are satisfied with the realtime data stream. I like both!

Thanks for the help. I'm a bit of a data nerd myself, having been a statistician/computer programmer. I'm always looking for better ways to display data.

I have got the manual, that's my next bedtime reading. I'll look for Youtube videos too.

Honestly, the thing that shocked me the most about the Dexcom was how obsessed I became with it. Before I adjusted to the fact that it is a guide, and not 100% accurate all the time, I was checking 3-4X more often than I did before I got it. I actually had to have my endo increase my test strip prescription because I almost ran out.
Also, if you haven't seen the actual inserter, it is huge. What is actually left on/in you is small, but all the packaging and necessary tools make it quite a large piece of plastic. You may want to look up the whole insertion device, just to get an idea. (I opened my first one at work, just to see what it looked like, and freaked my coworker out).

I completely agree with you Granny! If anyone tried to take my Dexcom away from me, they would have a fight on their hands!
By the way, in the first three months I had mine, my A1c dropped from a 9.6 to a 7.3. Before the Dexcom, I had never had and A1c below 8, and that was years ago. I hope yours delivers as well as mine did!

From a Very Happy Canadian user with a Medtronic Insulin Pump

My daughter's Dexcom, named Phil, rocks our Type 1 world! It gives me such peace of mind. Makes me feel like someone is looking out for her while I'm at work. If our insurance hadn't have covered the cost, I would have sold my soul to the devil himself to get her one. You won't regret getting a Dexcom.

Hi Annabella,

You will love your dexcom, it will make your life easier and relieve some of the 24/7 stress of managing D. I don't think you need to do a lot of prep but reading the manual ahead may help.

There are videos(at dex site I believe, you will receive a video/cd manual also, which are very helpful and people have their own videos at youtube) they give you to show you how to insert the sensor. It is large and can be a little intimidating, but after doing it a few times you will get the hang of it. I had a terrible time with insertion/pain the first time I used one and it wasn't accurate so I sent it back, but now I love the g4 even though I still have some inaccuracy and I wouldn't give it up for anything.

A dex rep called me to offer help, but I have been too busy to speak with them yet and I have gotten the hang of it all pretty easily. Dexcom also has good cs which helped me and replaced my first receiver due to some problems.

I haven't used the data programs yet but I may try diasend and I will definitely use the mac software when it becomes available. The daily graph is more than enough for me now.

Hi, Meee
How are things going for you? Glad to read that your Dex is working better for you since the last time that we wrote.

I, too, have a Mac. I noticed on Tu Diabetes there was a link to Diasend to use its services for free for 6 months. So I signed up for it and it is nice to see the graphs. I do have the Dexcom's program as well. The Diasend is nice to use for free if you're interested.

Happy T-Day (a little late)

Hi, Annabella

When you get your Dex, you will no doubt appreciate it as much as we (fellow Dexcomers) do. I, too, suggest that you view the videos on the internet. Several places to visit that I found helpful are (1) here on under the "Groups" at the top of the home page, click on "Dexcom users" & then a little way down that page, there is a link to "videos." (2)Go on Dexcom on Facebook. There are many videos from users about various interesting Dexcom hints/ideas. (3) There are many videos to watch on Dexcom's website. I found these very helpful to me.

Hope these help you. Let us all know how things work out for you. If by chance you might have difficulties with a sensor, there are many knowledgeable folks on this website who will share their expertise with you. I have found them to be very caring and helpful.

Best wishes,

Thanks CC,

I'm still swinging a lot but having dex is helping me and it is more accurate than not mostly now. I'm going to try diasend too, 6 months free is too good to pass by, lol. Happy belated Thanks Giving :-)

ps: Annabella, when I said the "sensor" is big, I meant the plastic thing that inserts it, not the actual sensor, which is tiny and quite thin/fine.

CC: unfortunately after I registered at diasend and downloaded the app it says the file is dangerous to my computer so I won’t be able to try it.

Good grief! I didn't get that message when I signed up or I would have stayed clear of it, too. Mine seems to work ok. I sure hope that it isn't "infected." I'm sorry that it didn't work. Now I'm worried. Thanks for the warning.

Take care,

Your going to love it. I’m a LADA type 1 no pump just the dexcom. I had the dexcom rep come to
My endos office and help with the first one it went great. The first one on your own is a little hard but once you get past that all is good. I had a problem with a sencor and I called they sent another one over night no issues. So watch a few videos read a little and get ready for a better way of life with diabets . Take what everyone had written it’s all wonderful help, and jump in. You will find the right spot to place it ,it took me a few weeks to figure out what was comfortable but once you figure out what works for you it’s a wonderful thing. I got my a1c down from 7 to 6.4 in only three months. It help you figure it out in real time. Best of luck and always come back with any questions I’m sure someone will have had the same issue or question you are having . Welcome to the group