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I'm a frequent BG tester - sometimes more than 10 times a day, if I'm
really active. It took me a long time to realize that I have 10 fingers,
each of which has 2 sides to use for testing. For years, I over used the
same few fingers and this led to hardening of the skin.

Some hints which helped me:

1)  Use the *sides* of the fingers, rather than the pads. Blood flow tends
to be better there, and it hurts less.
2)  Use a pattern for rotating your finger prick sites. That way, one
finger won't get used too often. I use the same side of each finger on each
hand, then move to the other hand, using the same side on the other hand.
Then, it's back to the first hand, but the other sides of the fingers, etc.
I know of at least one person who uses particular fingers for certain days
of the week. I'm fussy, but that's a little too much for me ;-)
3)  Warm your fingers before testing by washing them with warm water. Let
your hand hang down by your side for about 30 seconds before pricking it
for testing. This helps the blood flow.
4)  Gently "milk" the finger, rather than squeezing it hard. Try to press
between the knuckle and the spot you pricked, rather than above the
knuckle. Blood seems to flow better when done this way.
5)  I use a product called "Udder Balm" to help soften my hands. According
to the package, it's "recommended for use on teats, udders, hands and other
skin areas that are exposed to frequent washing and extremes in weather."
Well, I don't know about teats and udders, but it works pretty good on my
hands. I tried the product called "Formulated for Fingers" skin cream,
which may be what you are referring to. It is expensive, I don't know that
it works any better than anything else. I got a deal on a small bottle, but
I don't think I'd pay the price for a large bottle.

Hope this helps ;-)

Bob Burnett

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