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How do I know if my blood glucose is ‘within target’?

By checking a person’s blood glucose levels, you and your health care team can identify if your current diabetes medications are working effectively.

Everyone with diabetes can expect to have their HbA1c checked regularly (at least every 6 to 12 months). HbA1c is a measure that reflects the level of glucose in the bloodstream over the past 10–12 weeks. It is checked by having a blood sample taken, which your health professional can arrange.

For most people with type 2 diabetes, the recommended target for HbA1c is less than 7% (53 mmol/mol)—but targets vary for each person based on their personal situation. If you don’t know what your HbA1c level is or you don’t have a set target, talk to your health professional.

If your last HbA1c was higher than your target level, this may signal the need for a change in your diabetes management. For example, you may need to add another tablet or start injecting insulin.

Activity 2: Your blood glucose level and targets

The ‘thermometer’ below shows HbA1c in both % and mmol/mol. For example, an HbA1c of 7% is the same as an HbA1c of 53 mmol/mol. Above the thermometer, put a cross (X) on the line to show your latest HbA1c. Below the thermometer, put a X to show your target HbA1c.

My latest HbA1c (average blood glucose level) is:

The ‘thermometer’ shows HbA1c in both % and mmol/mol.

My target HbA1c is: ____

Next: Insulin: why, when, who, how, and what?

Diabetes Australia acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of this Country. We recognise their connection to land, waters, winds and culture. We pay the upmost respect to them, their cultures and to their Elders, past and present. We are committed to improving health outcomes for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people affected by diabetes and those at risk.

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