Barriers of Self-Monitoring Blood Glucose


Monitoring of blood glucose in human beings is one of the most important activities among others in a person’s health. Blood from patients is tested for various reasons like to check if one is pregnant, monitor the blood glucose (sugar) level especially for a diabetic patient, patients who have ketone from high blood glucose and patients taking insulin who are having a hard time to control their blood glucose level among others. Blood glucose level can be low, normal, or high hence understanding your blood sugar level can help in the self-management of blood glucose level. When blood sugar level is not at the normal level, then a patient has diabetes. According to De et al., (2012) diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease that shows a high comorbidity with psychiatric disorders and can either be type 1 or type 2.

Type 2 diabetes is a long-term metabolic disorder hence in patients with this type of diabetes their body does not use insulin efficiently a problem called insulin resistance which develops due to the inability of the pancreas to make extra insulin so as to maintain the patient’s blood glucose level at the normal level. Type 2 diabetes is found in a patient having high glucose level in the blood caused by obesity, when the blood pressure rises, lack of physical activity, disturbed blood lipids, the likelihood of developing diseases like thrombosis, etc., this can be summarized into three components lifestyle, genetic and medical conditions. Initially, the disease was diagnosed mostly in adults, but in the recent years the number of children diagnosed has increased, and this is articulated to the change in lifestyle. The symptoms include weight loss, increased urination, increased thirst, increased hunger, and the body feeling tired. The general public has not been sensitized on these symptoms, causes, and prevention of type 2 diabetic using mobile clinics with the help of nurse’s where information regarding blood sugar levels can be made clear to the public.

The health care service management should be involved in the care of diabetic patients for maximum health care since nurse practitioners are faced with a hard time to care for the diabetic patients due to the complicated nature of diabetes and also its time consuming. In this paper, we focus our attention on monitoring Barriers to self-monitoring of blood glucose so as to assist in the development of a health promotion plan that will enable nurse practitioners to care for the group diagnosed with type 2 diabetes because it‘s the most common form of diabetes.

Barriers to self –monitoring of blood glucose level include;

Financial factor

Finance is one of the main reasons which is a barrier to self-monitoring of blood glucose. This is attributed to lack of money to meet the cost of needles and tests. Financial problems in a family can also lead to a poor diet which also contributes to diabetes type 2. It is seen that people who live in poverty always suffer from various diseases since they do not have the capability to seek medical attention.

Frustrations involved in the process

Patients can terminate their self-monitoring of glucose levels due to frustrations involved in the process as it is not an easy task (Fisher, Cornman, Kohut, Schachner, & Stenger, 2013). One of the reasons is after a given number of tests a patient expects the blood level to come down so if it does not come down then it leads to frustration. Patients are always frustrated when carrying the glucose meter when traveling hence leaving the meter behind.

Fear of needles and pain

As most people fear pain whether old or young so do the patients suffering from diabetes (Snoek, Malanda, & de Wit, 2008). These patients are always afraid of needles and pain of pricking the fingertips hence terminating the program. Since many tests always require that blood be taken from the patient through pricking, most patients fear the needles and as such fail to attend the program.

Lack of knowledge   

Patients taking part in the self-monitoring of blood glucose level always change how to check for the blood sugar level as they avoid the frequency of the exercise since they see it as unnecessary. People are not well educated on this self-monitoring program and as such, they assume many things which in turn affect their health in the future.

Type of job

A patient working in a mechanic will always have his hands dirty hence it becomes a challenge to monitor his/her blood sugar level as prescribed by the doctor. Also, people working in a plantation will face the same situation hence a barrier to effective self-monitoring of glucose level. As such, there is need for people who are working in places where their hands get dirty have some sterilizing agents so as to monitor their blood levels.


Participants and patients cannot do this practice in the public due to stigma. This leads to patients avoiding monitoring their glucose level hence a barrier to self-monitoring of blood glucose level. The community should be accommodative to people with various diseases so as to avoid stigma.


De Ornelas Maia, A. C. C., de Azevedo Braga, A., Brouwers, A., Nardi, A. E., & e Silva, A. C. D. O. (2012). Prevalence of psychiatric disorders in patients with diabetes types 1 and 2. Comprehensive psychiatry, 53(8), 1169-1173.

Fisher, W., Cornman, D., Kohut, T., Schachner, H., & Stenger, P. (2013). What Primary Care Providers Can Do to Address Barriers to Self-Monitoring of Blood Glucose. Clinical Diabetes, 31(1), 34-42.

Snoek, F., Malanda, U., & de Wit, M. (2008). Self-monitoring of blood glucose: psychological barriers and benefits. European Diabetes Nursing, 5(3), 112-115.

(2016). Retrieved 17 October 2016, from