Heat days, outside exercises, and frequent dips within the pool are wonderful. Sadly, scorching summer time days and exercises also can imply that your CGM sensor tape begins to peel, which may imply a shorter lifespan in your sensor.
Clearly, no one needs that, so I’ve examined totally different manufacturers of Dexcom patches to see in the event that they have been snug to put on and will delay my sensor lifetime.
I examined these patches with a Dexcom sensor however a lot of the manufacturers I attempted provide patches for Dexcom, Freestyle Libre, Eversense, and Medtronic, in addition to pump and blood glucose meter adhesives.
Since I’ve solely examined a handful of the patches out there, be happy so as to add your favourite CGM tape within the remark under.
I also needs to point out that many individuals add an adhesive (like pores and skin glue) to their pores and skin beneath the tape for the sensor to stay longer. I’ve by no means had large success with the extra adhesive and I didn’t put on it with any of the CGM patches I used on this check.
What’s essential in a CGM patch?
On the subject of choosing sensor patches, I worth:
- How properly and the way lengthy it sticks to the pores and skin
- If it’s waterproof and lets my pores and skin breath
- Design and coloration decisions
- Cheap pricing
Generally, I don’t put on a sensor longer than 7-10 days (which can be what the Dexcom G5 and G6 are permitted for). The first cause I solely put on the sensor for 7-10 days is that I’ve pretty delicate pores and skin and sporting it longer may be an itchy and painful expertise.
I do know that a few of you put on the sensors for for much longer than I do, however, sadly, I can’t let you know how these patches carry out for those who put on them for greater than 10 days.
This was the primary sensor tape I got here throughout after I began sporting my Dexcom and it’s by far essentially the most sturdy of all of the patches I’ve tried. It truly sticks so properly to the pores and skin that it may be arduous to get off.
I’ve had to make use of glue remover (Uni-Clear up works properly and can be nice for eradicating glue residue) to make eradicating the patch much less uncomfortable. For sure, the GrifGrips will simply keep on for 7-10 days.
A lot of the grips are product of a cloth very similar to sports activities tape, so it doesn’t really feel restrictive or stiff and the pores and skin can breathe since you gained’t sweat beneath the patch however via it.
You may select between 5 totally different adhesive choices, so this can be a nice possibility in case you have delicate pores and skin or can’t tolerate pigments or dyes.
If you’d like your grip to be colourful, GrifGrips are available quite a lot of colours and shapes. I haven’t tried their multicolored designs, that are product of a distinct materials, so I can’t say in the event that they stick as properly.
Costs differ by design and quantity of patches you buy. You may get a 10-pack of primary coloured oval grips for $10 plus delivery.
Yow will discover all of the designs on the GrifGrip web site in addition to a range on Amazon. The oval sports activities tape that I most frequently decide is $20 for 20-grips on Amazon ($1/patch).
Pores and skin Grip
The Pores and skin Grip CGM patches are similar to GrifGrips. They’re additionally product of a delicate fabric-like materials. Nonetheless, it’s a a lot smaller firm they usually solely provide the oval and spherical patches in a small number of totally different colours, one being “tan”. Sadly, their definition of tan just isn’t the identical as my pores and skin coloration.
That apart, what actually units Pores and skin Grips aside from GrifGrips is the peel-off paper.
The paper is precut into 4 items, so as an alternative of getting to peel all of it off directly and having to handle a really sticky grip (I’ve tousled a number of grips as a result of they bought glued to themselves earlier than I bought them on my pores and skin), you may merely loosen up the perimeters, place the grip over the sensor, after which take away the paper. Easy however sensible.
You may see how I placed on the Pores and skin Grip on this video:
I’ve discovered that the fabric feels barely lighter than the GrifGrips however sticks simply as properly. It additionally doesn’t irritate my pores and skin.
Costs are very affordable, with a 20-pack of patches being $24.99 ($1.25/patch) on Amazon.
These CGM adhesives are enjoyable and colourful, and you may get a broad vary of cute designs. They’re predominantly oval patches however you too can get a number of different enjoyable shapes, together with mini tapes which might be smaller than a lot of the patches I’ve seen.
I attempted their owl-shaped and heart-shaped patches (not out there anymore), which some would possibly argue cater extra to the youthful viewers (however who cares, I’m younger at coronary heart!).
That is positively for individuals who aren’t shy about displaying off their diabetes gear and I actually loved sporting them.
The key draw back to those grips is that they’re printed on materials that feels extra like paper than sports activities tape. They felt stiffer than each GrifGrips and Pores and skin Grips they usually didn’t final me various days. My take is that these CGM patches are a strategy to beautify the sensors somewhat than ensuring they stick longer.
They’re fairly a bit dearer than the patches above with a median patch value of $3/patch once you purchase a 5-pack and $4 for a single patch. Yow will discover them on Amazon or the ExpressionMed web site.
Just like the ExpressionMed CGM patches, Pump Peelz brings the enjoyable relating to designs. They’ve a bigger choice of print designs than any of the opposite manufacturers however solely are available a single oval form.
Very similar to ExpressionMed, the prints are on materials that feels extra like paper than material, so in addition they are inclined to wrinkle a bit of and don’t final me so long as GrifGrip and Pores and skin Grips.
Nonetheless, for those who’re in search of a strategy to jazz up your CGM for any event, you’ll find it right here. They’ll even print your personal design if that’s what you favor. I wore their American flag after I turned a US citizen and thought that was very acceptable.
The designs appear barely extra mature than ExpressionMed. I had numerous enjoyable sporting them and would positively purchase them once more. However primarily to put on within the wintertime as a result of they don’t deal with warmth (and sweat) in addition to a few of the different patches.
You should buy a single patch for $3.49 or a pack of 5 patches for $12 ($2.4/patch) and also you decide as many various designs as you want on their web site.
The clear adhesives like Tegaderm and Flexifix will not be actually patches however somewhat medical adhesives/tape.
I can’t assist getting the sensation that I’m placing workplace tape on my physique every time I’ve used them. Since they’re made out of a plastic materials, my pores and skin can’t breathe, and the adhesives normally don’t final lengthy since sweat will pool up beneath the adhesive somewhat than undergo it.
I discover that my pores and skin turns into purple and irritated in a short time, and the one upside I see to this answer is that it’s comparatively low-cost and see-through.
Flexifix was the final model I attempted and I obtained a big roll of tape, which may simply be reduce into no matter form you need. That’s, after all, a bonus for those who don’t just like the bigger CGM patches out there (I’ve written about the best way to reduce the tape right here).
If you wish to attempt it out, you’ll find it on Amazon.
Which Dexcom patch would I like to recommend?
If the purpose is to make the Dexcom sensor keep on longer, and also you don’t care about colours, shapes, and designs, I’d suggest the Pores and skin Grips. They barely outperform GrifGrips on the identical value, they’re straightforward to use, they usually stick.
Though tremendous enjoyable and cute, the ExpressionMed patches and the Pump Peelz are extra a approach of beautifying your CGM sensor than a strategy to actually safe the sensor and prolonging the lifetime. That doesn’t imply I gained’t put on them (I truly actually like how enjoyable they’re), however, for me, they’ll simply be extra of a winter wearable.
In case you are in search of one of the best combo of practicality and design, I might suggest beginning within the GrifGrip retailer. Their patches work nice and they’re at all times popping out with new designs.
UPDATE: Different nice Dexcom patches that I’ve tried after writing this text:
Not Simply A Patch – Funky colours and a cool form for $21.99 for 20 patches
Dexcom’s Free Overlay tape – I didn’t like this tape however I’m including it because it’s free. Simply request a tape via the Dexcom app or contact Dexcom via their web site.