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Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre: Which CGM Is Right for You?

Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre: Which CGM Is Right for You?

In the realm of Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) systems, two names stand out: Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre. For individuals managing diabetes, choosing the right CGM can significantly impact their daily lives and overall health. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the key differences and similarities between Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre to help you make an informed decision.

Understanding Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre

Both Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre are CGM systems designed to continuously monitor glucose levels in individuals with diabetes. They aim to provide real-time data on blood sugar levels, helping users make timely decisions regarding insulin dosages, dietary choices, and lifestyle adjustments.


Dexcom has established itself as a pioneer in CGM technology, renowned for its accuracy and reliability. The Dexcom system consists of a small sensor that is inserted under the skin, typically in the abdomen area. This sensor continuously measures glucose levels in the interstitial fluid and transmits the data wirelessly to a receiver or compatible smart device.

One of Dexcom’s standout features is its ability to provide real-time glucose data every five minutes, enabling users to track trends and detect fluctuations promptly. Additionally, Dexcom offers customizable alerts for high and low glucose levels, providing users with added peace of mind and proactive management.

FreeStyle Libre

FreeStyle Libre, developed by Abbott, offers a slightly different approach to CGM technology. The FreeStyle Libre system comprises a small sensor worn on the back of the upper arm and a reader device or smartphone app used to scan the sensor. Unlike Dexcom, FreeStyle Libre does not continuously transmit glucose data; instead, users need to scan the sensor with the reader or app to obtain glucose readings.

Despite this difference in data transmission, FreeStyle Libre provides valuable insights into glucose trends and patterns. The system stores up to 8 hours of glucose data, allowing users to review their glucose levels retrospectively. FreeStyle Libre also offers optional glucose alarms to alert users of high and low glucose levels.

Read more Is FreeStyle Libre 2 the Ultimate Real-Time Continuous Glucose Monitor?

Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre: A Comparative Analysis

Accuracy and Reliability

Both Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre are known for their accuracy in glucose monitoring. However, Dexcom’s continuous monitoring technology may offer slightly more real-time accuracy compared to FreeStyle Libre’s intermittent scanning method.

Convenience and Ease of Use

FreeStyle Libre may have an edge in terms of convenience, as users only need to scan the sensor with the reader or smartphone app to obtain glucose readings. On the other hand, Dexcom’s continuous monitoring may appeal to users who prefer real-time data without the need for manual scans.


Cost is a significant factor to consider when choosing a CGM system. While both Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre may require upfront investment for the sensor and reader devices, ongoing costs such as sensor replacements and supplies should be evaluated to determine long-term affordability.


Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre offer compatibility with various devices, including smartphones and smartwatches. However, it’s essential to verify compatibility with your specific devices before making a decision.

Also, read about How Can the DIY Movement Revolutionize Glucose Management?


In the debate of Dexcom vs. FreeStyle Libre, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The choice between these two CGM systems ultimately depends on individual preferences, lifestyle, and management needs. Whether you prioritize real-time monitoring, convenience, or cost-effectiveness, both Dexcom and FreeStyle Libre offer advanced solutions for managing diabetes and improving quality of life.

Before making a decision, consult with your healthcare provider to determine which CGM system aligns best with your treatment goals and preferences. By staying informed and empowered, you can make confident choices in managing your diabetes effectively with Dexcom or FreeStyle Libre.