How to fix an inaccurate Dexcom sensor and avoid sensor fails

**quick disclaimer: this is my experience and is NOT medical advice nor is it recommended by the manufacturer. Sensor may still fail and/or be inaccurate. Don’t treat blood sugar based on readings without checking with a meter. This is for Dexcom G6!

Ok, now that we got that out of the way, I’ll let you in on a little secret of mine. When I insert a new sensor, 7/10 it is inaccurate and I don’t have the patience to see if it fixes itself, so I manipulate it into thinking it’s sort of right. Here’s what I mean:

Essentially, it’s a two step process.

The first calibration is with a fake number that is somewhere between actual finger poke check and the sensor.

The second calibration is the real blood sugar number from a meter that SHOULD fix the sensor and be accurate again.

For example, I had a sensor that showed my BG was 150 after warm-up, but my meter said 100. Unfortunately, 50mg/dl is too far off and would more than likely give a calibration error. So instead of entering 100, I did 130. This sensor was a little wonky, as you can see, so I waited an hour until I tried again. Same as before, I entered a “fake” blood sugar that was closer to what I thought the sensor was at. Then, after waiting 30ish minutes, I entered the correct blood sugar based off my meter.

This method is used when the meter reading and sensor readings are far apart, I’d say more than 30mg/dl. Following this has saved countless sensors. I think I’ve only had two fails in two years! Again, this is not science, nor is it medical advice. I ALWAYS assume the sensor is wrong until it proves itself to me. Anything else would be reckless and dangerous.

Let me know if you try this and your experience with inaccurate sensors.

Pro Tip: Inserting a sensor HOURS before you need it can help it be more accurate when starting it. When I can, I insert my sensors 12 hours before I actually start them. If you don’t attach the transmitter, just remember that the sensor alone is NOT waterproof.

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