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Home > Knowledge & support > Managing type 1 diabetes > Guide to type 1 diabetes technology
Our guide to type 1 diabetes technology gives you information about insulin and the different ways to get it into your body. You can find out about the different devices that can help you monitor your blood glucose levels.
Simply put, type 1 diabetes technology is technology that helps you manage type 1 diabetes. There are devices that help you take the right amount of insulin at the right times, and devices that help you measure your glucose levels throughout the day. Sometimes these devices work together to help automate parts of type 1 management, which can help it feel like less of a burden.
It’s completely up to you whether you use type 1 technology, which devices you want to use and how many of them. Some people are happy with multiple daily injections and finger-prick tests, whilst others may find hybrid closed loop systems beneficial. Managing type 1 is very personal, and it’s fine to take your time exploring the options to see what works for you.
Insulin pumps, insulin pens and smart insulin pens are used for infusing or injecting insulin. Continuous glucose monitors (CGM) and flash glucose monitors measure glucose levels. Hybrid closed loop technology, or the artificial pancreas as it is sometimes known, measures glucose levels and also administers insulin.
Remember to talk to your Diabetes Healthcare Team for further information and support. If you don’t currently attend a specialist clinic, ask your GP to refer you.
Using a pen to inject insulin is how most people with type 1 start taking insulin. Find out more about insulin pens and how to use them.
Insulin pumps deliver insulin automatically throughout the day and night. Extra insulin can be easily delivered to cover food or bring down high glucose levels. Find out how they work and how you may be able to get one.
Smart insulin pens work like normal insulin pens but connect to an app, which records how much insulin you’ve taken and when. Find out more and how you can get one.
Blood glucose meters are used throughout the day to check blood glucose levels. They’re also used alongside continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) and flash glucose monitors.
Continuous glucose monitors give you real-time information on your glucose levels and alert you if your levels are going too high or too low. You can also share glucose readings with others.
Find out how CGM might help you and how to get one on the NHS.
Flash glucose monitoring allows you to scan a sensor attached to your body to get your latest glucose reading. You can also set alarms if your glucose levels are going too high or too low.
Find out more about flash and how to get one on the NHS.
Hybrid closed loop technology, also known as the artificial pancreas, takes readings from a CGM to tell a pump how much insulin to deliver. It can relieve much of the burden of daily type 1 management.
Find out more and how to get one on the NHS.
Free, open-source tools are available that can help you manage your type 1 more easily and let you share your glucose data with your diabetes team, carers or loved ones. Find out more about open source and DIY systems.
Blood ketone meters measure levels of ketones in your blood so you can detect them sooner than you could with urine ketone testing. This will enable you to take action sooner, so they don’t go too high and become dangerous. Learn about ketone monitoring using a blood ketone meter.
The devices that are available on the NHS can differ, depending on whether you need to meet certain criteria in terms of your type 1 diabetes management or what’s on offer where you live. Find out what you are entitled to in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland on our pages below:
Deciding whether to use type 1 technology and then choosing the devices and apps that work best for you can be a bit daunting. There are different options to choose from, each one with different pros and cons.
The NHS tool, Making a decision about managing type 1 diabetes, gives you information, checklists and sections to fill out to help you make decisions about what tech you’d like to use. Once completed, you can take it to your clinic appointment to discuss your options with your Diabetes Healthcare Team.
It also outlines what is available on the NHS in England and Wales. If you’re based in Scotland or Northern Ireland, the checklists and information about the different types of technology will still be relevant and helpful. You can find out what’s available on the NHS in your region on our website, as outlined in the section above.
If the guide doesn’t fully answer your questions, you can contact our specialist team.
James shares his type 1 diabetes story, from being diagnosed to using hybrid closed loop technology.
We both wear the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitoring device to help manage our blood sugars. It has been a life changing piece of technology that has improved both our time in range as well as providing constant reassurance
Grace tells us about her type 1 diagnosis, how she uses type 1 technology and her hopes for the future.
“If we can make things easier for people with type 1, then we should.”
“I use the Freestyle Libra 2 and injections, and before using the technology, it was quite stressful trying to manage my blood glucose levels with the finger prick testing. So for me it’s been a bit of a game changer.”
Join us in Aberdeen for an informative event dedicated to exploring the world of type 1 diabetes. Discover the latest developments in type 1 research, hear from experts in the field and connect with others living with type 1.
Our resource hub contains tech explainer videos, technology-focused Discovery event videos and films of people with type 1 discussing tech.
In an historic advancement in the treatment of type 1 diabetes, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) today approves hybrid closed loop for the majority of people living with type 1 diabetes in England and Wales.
As part of its assessment of hybrid closed loop (HCL), the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has today published an additional consultation on its roll out.
Insulet, the company who make Omnipod® products, has announced that their Omnipod® 5 hybrid closed loop (HCL) technology is now available in the UK.
We know that deciding whether to use type 1 technology and then choosing the right devices and apps can be a bit daunting. Find out what’s available in your area with our tech finder tool.
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