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How Does Diabetes Affect My Pregnancy?

Gestational Diabetes: What You Need To Know

Gestational Diabetes: What You Need To Know

This pregnancy complication is more common than you might think. Learn who's at risk for it, how it's detected, and what can be done to treat it. For years, doctors believed that gestational diabetes affected three to five percent of all pregnancies, but new, more rigorous diagnostic criteria puts the number closer to 18 percent. The condition, which can strike any pregnant woman, usually develops in the second trimester, between weeks 24 and 28, and typically resolves after baby is born. If gestational diabetes is treated and well-managed throughout your pregnancy, "There's no reason you can't deliver a very healthy baby," says Patricia Devine, M.D., perinatologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. But gestational diabetes that goes untreated, or isn't carefully monitored, can be harmful for both mother and baby. Consult our guide for risk factors, signs of gestational diabetes, and treatment options. What is gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes, or diabetes that is diagnosed during pregnancy in a woman who previously did not have diabetes, occurs when the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar efficiently. "A hormone produced by the placenta makes a woman essentially resistant to her own insulin," Dr. Devine explains. How does gestational diabetes differ from type 1 or 2 diabetes? Gestational diabetes affects only pregnant women. People who have type 1 diabetes, sometimes referred to as juvenile diabetes, are generally born with it. Type 2 diabetes accounts for 95 percent of all cases of diabetes in the U.S.; it occurs in adulthood, and is triggered by lifestyle factors such as obesity and lack of physical activity. What causes it? It's unclear why some women develop gestational diabetes while others do not. Doctors th Continue reading >>

Pregnancy And Diabetes

Pregnancy And Diabetes

Most women with diabetes who become pregnant have Type 1 diabetes (insulin-dependent diabetes), because this is the type that affects younger women. However, increasing numbers of pregnant women with Type 2 diabetes (non-insulin dependent diabetes) are being seen. If you have diabetes and want to start a family, there are a number of things to consider. The key to a healthy pregnancy with diabetes is good blood sugar control before, during and after pregnancy. What are the risks? Babies born to mothers with poor blood sugar control are more likely to have birth defects or be stillborn. Babies born to mothers with diabetes weigh more than average, especially if glucose control has been poor. For the mother, diabetes and pregnancy can be associated with extra risks. Retinopathy may increase in severity. Diabetic kidney disease increases your chance of developing high blood pressure and a more serious condition called pre-eclampsia that can affect mother and baby. What can I do to reduce these risks? Establishing good glucose control well before conceiving and throughout pregnancy reduces the chance of all these problems occurring. Pre-pregnancy counselling by a specialist hospital diabetes clinic should be available. A combined approach between you, your GP, nurses, eye specialist and obstetrician is the best way to minimise problems. Regular blood sugar checks are essential to keep track of the diabetes, because your insulin requirement will increase as your pregnancy develops. This is caused by the increasing demands of your growing baby combined with the natural tendency for insulin resistance to increase in all pregnancies. All this means you will probably need to test your blood sugar level more frequently during pregnancy. This will be at least four times per day be Continue reading >>

Diabetes In Pregnancy

Diabetes In Pregnancy

November 14 is World Diabetes Day. As obesity in India increases, women are becoming more susceptible to diabetes. Diabetes in pregnancy can affect the health of both the mother and her unborn child. If the diabetes is not well-controlled, there is an increased chance for miscarriage, birth defects and other problems in the pregnancy. There are three types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes which requires daily insulin injections for control, Type 2 diabetes which is usually controlled with diet, exercise and tablets, and gestational diabetes which is diabetes first detected in pregnancy. Here are a few frequently asked questions about diabetes and pregnancy: How does gestational diabetes differ from Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes? A woman who develops diabetes during pregnancy is said to have gestational diabetes. Some women have more than one pregnancy affected by diabetes which may disappear after the pregnancy ends. The worrisome part is that more than 50 per cent of women with gestational diabetes will develop Type 2 diabetes later. If not controlled, gestational diabetes can cause the baby to grow very large and can lead to problems with delivery for the mother and the baby. Gestational diabetes might be controlled with diet and exercise, or it might require the administration of insulin. Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes often are present before a woman gets pregnant. If not controlled before and during pregnancy, Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can lead to miscarriage or birth defects. The mother also becomes susceptible to problems such as high blood pressure, kidney disease, or blindness. Will my baby develop diabetes? Babies born to mothers with diabetes are not born with diabetes. If the mother's diabetes was not well-controlled during pregnancy, the baby will produce large quanti Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Pregnancy

Diabetes And Pregnancy

What is diabetes? Diabetes is a condition in which the body can't produce enough insulin, or it can't use it properly. Insulin is the hormone that allows glucose (sugar) to enter the cells to be used as fuel. When glucose cannot enter the cells, it builds up in the blood. This is called hyperglycemia or high blood sugar. Damage from diabetes comes from the effects of hyperglycemia on other organ systems including the eyes, kidneys, heart, blood vessels, and nerves. In early pregnancy, hyperglycemia can result in birth defects. What are the different types of diabetes? There are three basic types of diabetes including: Type 1 diabetes. Also called insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM), type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder in which the body's immune system destroys, or attempts to destroy, the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes usually develops in children or young adults, but can start at any age. Type 2 diabetes. A metabolic disorder resulting from the body's inability to make enough, or properly use, insulin. It used to be called noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM). Gestational diabetes. A condition in which the blood glucose level is elevated and other diabetic symptoms appear during pregnancy in a woman who has not previously been diagnosed with diabetes. Diabetes is a serious disease, which, if not controlled, can be life-threatening. It is often associated with long-term complications that can affect every system and part of the body. Diabetes can contribute to eye disorders and blindness, heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, amputation, and nerve damage. What happens with diabetes and pregnancy? During pregnancy, the placenta supplies a growing fetus with nutrients and water. The placenta also makes a variety of horm Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Pregnancy

Diabetes And Pregnancy

One in twenty pregnant women in Australia is affected by diabetes. Although the disease can cause serious complications for mothers and babies, good planning and comprehensive antenatal care can keep you and your baby healthy. By Joanna Egan. Diabetes is a chronic condition characterised by the body's inability to control glucose levels in the blood. Glucose is a simple sugar found in foods such as breads, cereals, fruit, starchy vegetables, legumes, dairy products and sweets. A hormone produced by the pancreas, called insulin, converts this glucose into energy that is used to fuel the body. When a person has diabetes, they either don't produce enough insulin or are unable to use insulin effectively. This causes glucose to build up in their bloodstream. There are several types of diabetes: Type 1: People with type 1 diabetes don't produce insulin. As a result, they need to monitor their blood glucose levels carefully and require regular insulin injections (up to four times a day). Generally, type 1 diabetes arises in children and young adults, but it can occur at any age. Type 2: This is the most common form of diabetes. Some people have a genetic predisposition to developing the disease but often, it is caused by lifestyle factors such as high blood pressure, obesity, insufficient exercise and poor diet. People with type 2 diabetes produce insulin, but either don't produce enough or are unable to use it effectively. Generally, it is initially managed with healthy eating and regular physical activity, but as the condition progresses, glucose-lowering tablets and/or insulin injections may be prescribed. Gestational diabetes: This form of diabetes develops, or is first diagnosed, during pregnancy. It usually appears late in the second trimester and resolves after childbir Continue reading >>

Can Women With Diabetes Get Pregnant?

Can Women With Diabetes Get Pregnant?

Can Women with Diabetes Get Pregnant? Can women with diabetes get pregnant? Diabetes can affect a person without warning and sometimes may even occur without any family history. For a woman of child bearing age, this is stressful as the desire to become a mother and the thought of bringing harm to the child. Although the risks associated with pregnancy in a diabetic woman can’t be ignored, the number of misconceptions is huge and adds to the stress. However, the situation is not as bad as it is made out. Diabetic woman can get pregnant and deliver healthy babies. You just need to take certain precautions to become a mother. The short answer is “Yes”. Since diabetes is a chronic condition, a person is required to take care of their health. Monitoring the sugar levels and keeping them in check is essential. This becomes all the more necessary and important during pregnancy, when your body is undergoing a lot of changes. You should interact more often with your doctor and other healthcare professionals during your pregnancy and try to manage your diabetes as best as you can. This way you can have a successful pregnancy and a healthy baby. How Will Diabetes Affect My Pregnancy? The most commonly seen complications of diabetes are those that affect the kidney, eyes and the nervous system. These are also known as diabetic-nephropathy, retinopathy and neuropathy respectively. After delivery the symptoms might disappear; however, treatment may be required. Ensure that you inform your doctor about any changes in your body as they can be symptoms of a condition. Common conditions seen among mothers are: urinary tract infection leading to fever. high blood pressure leading to fluid build up. swelling in limbs and face. protein excretion in urine. carpal tunnel syndrome leadi Continue reading >>

Gestational Diabetes: What It Means For You And Your Baby

Gestational Diabetes: What It Means For You And Your Baby

Please note: This information was current at the time of publication. But medical information is always changing, and some information given here may be out of date. For regularly updated information on a variety of health topics, please visit familydoctor.org, the AAFP patient education website. What is gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes is a kind of diabetes that starts during pregnancy. (The word gestational means “during pregnancy.”) If you have gestational diabetes, your body isn't able to use the sugar (glucose) in your blood as well as it should, so the level of sugar in your blood gets too high. Gestational diabetes affects about 3% of all pregnant women. It usually starts in the fifth or sixth month of pregnancy (between the 24th and 28th weeks). This kind of diabetes goes away after the baby is born. How can gestational diabetes affect me and my baby? Your baby may grow somewhat larger than a typical baby. This can happen because the extra sugar in your blood “feeds” your baby more. If your baby is very large, you may have a more difficult delivery or need a cesarean section. Gestational diabetes can also cause some problems for your baby at birth, such as a low blood sugar level or jaundice (yellowish skin color). Neither of these problems is very serious. If your baby's blood sugar level is low, he or she will be given extra glucose (sugar water) to bring it back to normal. Jaundice is treated by putting the baby under special lights. Jaundice is common in many newborns and not just those born to mothers with gestational diabetes. What can I do if I have gestational diabetes? Your doctor will probably suggest a special diet for you and may want you to have your blood tested to monitor (check) the sugar level. He or she may also want you to ge Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Getting Pregnant

Diabetes And Getting Pregnant

Having a chronic condition such as diabetes (diabetes mellitus) takes careful monitoring of your health at the best of times, and this becomes even more crucial during pregnancy, a time when your body changes dramatically. Most women who have pre-existing diabetes who become pregnant have type 1 diabetes (once called insulin-dependent or juvenile diabetes), although some may have type 2 (once called non-insulin dependent or maturity-onset) diabetes. Another type of diabetes called gestational diabetes is a temporary type of diabetes that occurs in pregnant women who have never had diabetes before and it usually goes away after the baby is born. This article deals only with pre-existing diabetes — also known as 'pre-gestational diabetes'. If you have diabetes, there’s no reason that you can’t have a healthy and successful pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby. What it does mean is that you will probably have to work closely with your doctor and other healthcare professionals to ensure you manage your diabetes well during your pregnancy. I have diabetes and want to become pregnant: what should I do? Seeing your doctor for pre-pregnancy planning is an important step in ensuring the best outcome for you and your baby. You have a pre-existing condition, so you can plan ahead and discuss with your doctor what you need to do before you become pregnant, and what you can do to manage your diabetes during pregnancy. For example, if you have diabetes, you have a slightly higher risk than other women of your baby: having a birth defect; being born prematurely; weighing too much or too little; having jaundice; or having dangerously low blood sugar levels after birth. You yourself have an increased risk of having a miscarriage or of developing high blood pressure during the preg Continue reading >>

Pregnancy With Type 1 Diabetes

Pregnancy With Type 1 Diabetes

Forty five years ago when I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes I was clearly told I couldn’t have children. I didn’t. Today, thankfully that advice is no longer given. And while a woman with Type 1 diabetes needs to take precautions, she can absolutely, and safely, have a healthy baby. I sat down for an interview with Ginger Vieira, co-author,with Jennifer Smith, of the recent book, Pregnancy with Type 1 Diabetes: Your Month-to-Month Guide to Blood Sugar Management. What will people find in the book? As much information as you possibly need to understand why your blood sugars fluctuate during pregnancy and how to adjust your insulin management to keep your blood sugars as close to non-diabetic levels as possible. Also the book covers preparing for pregnancy, months one through nine of your pregnancy, delivery, and postpartum, including the challenges of breastfeeding for a woman with type 1 diabetes. My co-author Jenny is also my diabetes pregnancy coach. As a certified diabetes educator, woman with type 1 diabetes and mother, she knows this journey inside and out. What makes pregnancy for a woman with type 1 diabetes challenging? Let’s face it, a normal day with type 1 diabetes is challenging, balancing an autonomic system your body ought to balance on its own. And we’re only given insulin to do the job, while a non-diabetic body uses several different hormones to balance blood sugar. Add pregnancy to that mix and you add the insane pressure of, “Every decision you make impacts the human life growing inside of you!!!” And now you have to balance your blood sugars with constantly shifting pregnancy hormones. Plus those hormones impact your insulin needs in ways that are constantly changing and evolving. Also, there is never a break. Even when you’re sleepi Continue reading >>

How Does Gestational Diabetes Affect My Baby?

How Does Gestational Diabetes Affect My Baby?

If you have gestational diabetes (GDM) during your pregnancy, it puts the fetus at risk for a variety of conditions, including excessive weight (macrosomia or large for gestational age), hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), hyperbilirubinemia (high bilirubin, which can lead to brain damage if not controlled), the need for an operative delivery or primary Caesarean section and shoulder dystocia (when the fetus's shoulder is trapped in the pelvis at the time of delivery -- a very serious complication that can result in lifelong injury). The main concern with gestational diabetes is that the baby may develop a fetal macrosomia, a condition in which it grows more than nine pounds, four ounces before birth, regardless of gestational age. This occurs because the baby is getting large amounts of glucose from the mother, which triggers the baby's pancreas to produce more insulin. The extra glucose, then, is converted to fat. In some cases, the baby becomes too large to be delivered through the birth canal, requiring a cesarean delivery. Gestational diabetes also increases the risk of hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, in the baby right after delivery. This medical problem typically occurs if the mother's blood sugar levels have been consistently high, leading to high blood levels of insulin in the baby. After birth, the baby continues to have a high insulin level but no longer has the high levels of glucose from the mother. So the newborn's blood sugar levels drop sharply and suddenly. Your baby's blood sugar levels will be checked in the newborn nursery, and if they're too low, the baby may receive oral or intravenous glucose. Babies whose mothers have gestational diabetes or whose mothers had insulin-dependent diabetes before they became pregnant are also at higher risk for respira Continue reading >>

Gestational Diabetes - Risks, Causes, Prevention!

Gestational Diabetes - Risks, Causes, Prevention!

Gestational Diabetes What is Gestational Diabetes? Gestational Diabetes is diabetes that is found for the first time when a woman is pregnant. The expecting mother develops large amount of sugar in her blood which generally resolves itself after baby's birth - unlike other types of diabetes which are lifelong conditions. How does Gestational Diabetes develop? Gestational diabetes develops when the body cannot produce enough insulin - a substance produced by pancreas which regulates the amount of sugar available in the blood for energy and enables any sugar that isn't immediately required to be stored. The pregnant women has to produce extra insulin to meet baby's needs, if her body can't manage this, she may develop gestational diabetes. Blood sugar levels may also rise because the hormonal changes of pregnancy interfere with insulin function. Gestational diabetes usually develops during the last half of pregnancy. Risk Factors • Women who are obese. • Women with high blood pressure • Women listed positive for sugar in urine during antenatal checkup. • Women who are above 25yrs of age. • Women with family history of type 2 diabetes. How is Gestational Diabetes Treated? Gestational Diabetes can be treated by keeping blood glucose level in a target range. Proper diet, physical activity and insulin if required plays important role in maintaining blood glucose levels. • Dietary Tips 1. Have small frequent meals i.e. six small meals in a day. 2. Limit sweets. 3. Include more and more fiber in your diet in form of fruits, vegetables, whole grain bread and cereals. 4. Carbohydrates should be 40%-45% of the total calories with breakfast and a bedtime snack containing 15-30 grams of carbohydrates. 5. Drink 8-10 glasses of liquids/day. 6. Avoid Trans fats, fried foods Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes During Pregnancy

Type 2 Diabetes During Pregnancy

There’s lots of good news these days for pregnant women with type 2 diabetes (a condition in which the body doesn’t respond as it should to insulin). In fact, with the right medical help and diligent self-care, you have about the same excellent chances of having a successful pregnancy and a healthy baby as any other expectant mom. The key to managing type 2 diabetes during pregnancy? Achieving normal blood glucose levels six months before conception and maintaining those levels throughout the nine months following it. So if you’ve been on top of keeping your diabetes under control, it’s more important than ever to continue your routine now that there are two of you on board. Here's what to think about if you're heading into pregnancy with type 2 diabetes: Your care team How does diabetes affect babies during pregnancy? If you have type 2 diabetes, you already have higher levels of glucose circulating in your blood; issues can come up if your blood sugar levels aren’t well monitored and managed. That’s because extra sugar can be transferred to baby while you're expecting — and a fetus that’s served too much glucose reacts by producing an increased supply of insulin (which can result in a too-large baby and other complications). READ MORE: Gestational Diabetes Finding your pregnancy and diabetes care team Be prepared: You’ll have a lot more prenatal visits than other expectant moms and will probably be given more doctors’ orders to follow (all for a good cause). So it’s a good idea to get your medical team in place as soon as you think you might want to get pregnant. The OB or midwife who supervises your pregnancy should have plenty of experience caring for diabetic moms-to-be, and he or she should work together with the doctor who has been in charge Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Pregnancy

Diabetes And Pregnancy

Sometimes pregnancy causes the blood sugar to rise in women who do not have diabetes. This is called gestational diabetes. What is diabetes? Diabetes mellitus (just called diabetes from now on) occurs when the level of sugar (glucose) in the blood becomes higher than normal. There are two main types of diabetes. These are called type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. For further information about diabetes, see separate leaflets called Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes. Sometimes pregnancy causes the blood sugar to rise in women who do not have diabetes. This is called gestational diabetes (see below). How does pregnancy affect diabetes? How does pregnancy affect diabetes? Play VideoPlayMute0:00/0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE0:00Playback Rate1xChapters Chapters Descriptions descriptions off, selected Subtitles undefined settings, opens undefined settings dialog captions and subtitles off, selected Audio TrackFullscreen This is a modal window. Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window. TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal Dialog End of dialog window. Pregnancy makes the body need more insulin to control the levels of sugar (glucose) in the body. Therefore, women with diabetes usually need more treatments to control their blood sugar when t Continue reading >>

Diabetes During Pregnancy

Diabetes During Pregnancy

What is diabetes? Diabetes is a condition in which the body can't make enough insulin, or can't use insulin normally. Insulin is a hormone. It helps sugar (glucose) in the blood get into cells of the body to be used as fuel. When glucose can’t enter the cells, it builds up in the blood. This is called high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). High blood sugar can cause problems all over the body. It can damage blood vessels and nerves. It can harm the eyes, kidneys, and heart. In early pregnancy, high blood sugar can lead to birth defects in a growing baby. There are 3 types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder. The body's immune system damages the cells in the pancreas that make insulin. Type 2 diabetes. This is when the body can’t make enough insulin or use it normally. It’s not an autoimmune disease. Gestational diabetes. This is a condition in which the blood glucose level goes up and other diabetic symptoms appear during pregnancy in a woman who has not been diagnosed with diabetes before. It happens in about 3 in 100 to 9 in 100 pregnant women. What causes diabetes during pregnancy? Some women have diabetes before they get pregnant. This is called pregestational diabetes. Other women may get a type of diabetes that only happens in pregnancy. This is called gestational diabetes. Pregnancy can change how a woman's body uses glucose. This can make diabetes worse, or lead to gestational diabetes. During pregnancy, an organ called the placenta gives a growing baby nutrients and oxygen. The placenta also makes hormones. In late pregnancy, the hormones estrogen, cortisol, and human placental lactogen can block insulin. When insulin is blocked, it’s called insulin resistance. Glucose can't go into the body’s cells. The glucose stays in Continue reading >>

Pre-existing Diabetes And Pregnancy

Pre-existing Diabetes And Pregnancy

When Joy contacted TheDiabetesCouncil, she wanted to know if she would ever be able to get pregnant and have a healthy baby with her Type 1 diabetes. She had previously heard that there were risks that came with being pregnant and she needed some guidance. We decided to put together a comprehensive guide which would shed light on pregnancy with pre-existing diabetes. We hope Joy and others who have similar questions concerns will benefit from the information provided here, as they work to get the strict diabetes control that is needed. Let’s take a look at what it takes to have a healthy pregnancy and baby despite having diabetes. What this article is about In this article, we will look at how you can manage your diabetes during pregnancy for your health and the health of your baby. We will learn about the guidelines for managing diabetes during pregnancy, and provide you with a detailed instruction. We will explore what women with pre-existing diabetes need to know before they get pregnant, and what they need to know in order to experience a healthy pregnancy with diabetes. What this article is not about Gestational diabetes, or diabetes acquired after pregnancy. I want to stress that this article is not about gestational diabetes. We have already covered the topic of Gestational Diabetes for which the in-depth article can be found here: How opinions on pre-existing diabetes and pregnancy have changed over time Back in the 1980’s, I strongly urged all my teenage patients with diabetes to stay on birth control and prevent pregnancy with diabetes. The outcome was never too good when they got pregnant, had out of control diabetes, and the complications that would arise from the pregnancy. Outcomes are still grave if tight control is not achieved before and during the Continue reading >>

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