Where should you insert & attach the Dexcom G6 CGM Sensor on your body?

Dexcom G6 diabetes sensor system

The Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System offers ways for users to always know their glucose number and if those numbers are trending higher or lower. And the best benefit? No fingersticks!

But some folks have trouble finding just the right place to insert the sensor on their bodies. If you’re having problems finding a good location for your Dexcom G6 sensor, read on!

Related reading

What is the Dexcom G6 Sensor?

The central idea around the Dexcom G6 sensor is fulfilling the promise of ‘Zero Fingersticks’. Most Diabetes patients can testify about the discomfort around continuously pricking of the fingertips in order to get an accurate measurement of the relevant diabetes readings.

The Dexcom G6 sensor is FDA approved and is a game-changer, particularly for diabetes patients who need to monitor their glucose levels on a continuous basis.

As opposed to regular Blood glucose monitoring, CGM, or continuous glucose monitoring regularly monitors your glucose number throughout the day with the help of the sensor.

The Dexcom G6 Sensor package comes with a simple auto-applicator that inserts a small sensor right beneath the skin.

The G6 Sensor along with the transmitter continuously monitors your blood glucose levels and wirelessly transmits the information to a display device such as your phone or smartwatch.

Folks with an Apple Watch can also view their Dexcom app number and trending indication arrow as a complication on the watch face.

apple watch app for deacon

Are the Dexcom sensors waterproof?

The G5/G6 Sensor Pod is water-resistant when the transmitter is installed properly. The receiver is not water-resistant or waterproof and can be damaged if moisture gets inside it. Water can also severely limit communication range with the G5 and G6, so you never want to prevent communication between the transmitter and display devices. 

It is also important that you keep in mind that some skincare products, such as sunscreens and insect repellents, can make the plastic used in your G6 crack. So, its good to avoid using skin care products around the area.

You can wear the sensor continuously for a period of 10 days and it is water-resistant.

Apart from the placement of the sensor, the Dexcom app is the other thing that you will need to get familiar with. Some users experience little annoyances setting up their Dexcomm and monitoring their progress.

We have identified the most common Dexcom related users and provided some tips on how you can overcome these problems. Please check out the article below.

Where should you put in the G6 sensor?

As per guidance from Dexcom, for children

“Just like G5 Mobile, sensor insertion sites are on the belly (age 2 years and older) or the upper buttocks (ages 2-17 years). “

For adults, look for a place on your belly or upper buttocks where you have some padding. (Body fat).

Avoid areas that have scarring, tattoos, bones, or irritation. It is also important to make sure that the area where you attach the G6 sensor does not get pushed, bumped, or add discomfort when sleeping.

Do not place the patch where skin folds when bending or near the waistband area.

Make sure you change the location where you insert the sensor each time!

It’s okay to try other places on the body!

There are many Dexcom users who have found success in trying other body areas for the insertion of the sensor.

Some users who don’t have adequate abdomen fat tried attaching the G6 sensor to the backside of the arm. 

“We put our sons in the back of his arm. Not easy for him to mess around with and it’s out of the way for the most part.”

Placing it at the back of the arm allows you to switch the placement to the other arm when you replace the sensor after 10 days. This is especially good for pediatric patients who will not be able to get their hands on the sensor and try to peel it off or tamper with the adhesive.

This week DEXCOM was finally able to receive the CE Marking in Europe for allowing users to wear in on the back of the upper arm.

Dexcom CE marking for back of the arm

If you can’t find a good place for the sensor, ask your doctor 

As with other medical applications, it’s important that you check with your doctor or endocrinologist before establishing the best spot for the Dexcom G6 sensor.

Clean and dry skin is essential before you insert the sensor

  • Clean and dry your hands and your insertion site before inserting your sensor.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water, not gel cleaners, and then dry them before opening the sensor package. (If your hands are dirty when you insert the sensor, you may get germs on the insertion site and get an infection.)
  • Clean your insertion site with alcohol wipes to prevent infections.
  • Don’t insert the sensor until your skin is completely dry. (If your insertion site is not clean and completely dry, you run the risk of infection or the transmitter holder not sticking well.)
  • Avoid any activities that cause profuse sweating until the patch is fully attached to your skin

If using an extra adhesive like Mastisol or SkinTac, place that additional adhesive under the patch. And take care to avoid the spot where needle inserts. Let this additional adhesive thoroughly dry before inserting the needle.

Depending on weather and other factors, it may take a full 12 hours for the patch to fully dry and stick to the skin.

Is the sensor patch peeling off too early before the full 10 days?

First, make sure you follow all the instructions to clean and dry the skin.

Although the adhesive quality starts to give away around 10 days, here are some good directions from Dexcom that will help you keep the unit on for the full 10 days.

You may want to also explore a popular third-party adhesive support called ‘SKIN GRIP’ that is available from Amazon.

Dexcom Sensor and Verily

Advancements in Diabetes sensors coming in 2020/ 2021

Dexcom and Verily ( Google’s life sciences division)  are launching the G7, a much thinner, less expensive, fully disposable continuous glucose monitor, in the US in about two years – late 2020 is the current estimate for the launch, followed by broader availability in 2021.

The new G7 sensor units are expected to significantly lower cost, fully disposable and most importantly it will extend the wear time from the current 10 days to a 14 – 15-day timeframe.

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1 COMMENT

  1. My mom was just diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, and she doesn’t know what to expect and wants to be more prepared for what changes she needs to make.

    Getting the right supplies from a professional like adhesive tape could be really useful and keep her senor attached.

    I’ll be sure to tell her about how it can show up on her Apple watch and make sure that the skin is dry before applying it.

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