Gestational Diabetes – How to Diagnose and Treat

Problems during pregnancy can happen, as much as the woman dreams of a totally healthy pregnancy, complications can appear as for example gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is nothing more than an increase in blood sugar during pregnancy.

A pregnant woman may or may not already have developed diabetes before pregnancy happens, but the most common of gestational diabetes is that it appears already in pregnancy. Most cases of gestational diabetes end well for both mother and baby, however, pregnancy with gestational diabetes as a complication must be treated as a risky pregnancy and must be surrounded by care.

Why Glucose Rises

In diabetes in general, not only during gestation, the glycemia index in the body of the person affected by the disease rises considerably because the insulin that the pancreas manufactures is not of an adequate amount to metabolize the sugar that enters at mealtimes.

As a result, the extra sugar in the body circulates through the bloodstream and is also eliminated in the urine. Specifically in gestational diabetes, the excess sugar passes to the baby causing him to have the same excess as the pregnant woman. Babies of women with gestational diabetes can be large, weighing over 4kg just because of this excess sugar in their metabolism already in its development .

What are symptoms of gestational diabetes?

If diagnosed early in pregnancy, the disease can be easily controlled and the pregnancy can be carried forward without any major concerns. Keeping your eyes open is very important! Gestational diabetes can be characterized by symptoms that appear throughout pregnancy , symptoms such as:

  • Tiredness
  • Infections often
  • Excessive thirst and urination
  • Blurred vision
  • Sudden weight loss

However, the symptoms of gestational diabetes should be investigated by the doctor and simple tests such as a blood glucose test in a blood test can detect gestational diabetes. However, there are specific tests that can determine exactly the level and amount of glucose and carbohydrate not metabolized in the body.

The glycemic curve is the most used test to diagnose gestational diabetes. The glycemic curve can be made in 3 steps, the first blood collection in a fasting period of 10 to 12 hours.

After this collection, the patient takes a load of glucose , a kind of very sweet juice. After this glycemic load, the blood is collected again with 1 and 2 hours of load and this method is called a 2-hour load.

Glycemic Curve Exam Result

The result of the curve is based on parameters that say values up to 100mg / dl for fasting are considered normal, values ​​up to 140 for a second hour load and above 100 and 200 for these times are considered pre gestational diabetes or not.

Often, some factors can interfere with the precise result of the exam, such as the excessive intake of pasta on the day before the exam, so it is recommended that the pregnant woman make a certain restriction of bread, pasta and rice.

These foods should also be avoided by pregnant women who are aware of the existence of gestational diabetes. Foods like sweets, and excess sweet fruits and foods like potatoes should also be avoided.

Inserting fibers in the food is essential! Foods such as apples and oranges can help control blood glucose and sweeteners are forbidden during pregnancy, except with medical advice.

Who May Have Gestational Diabetes

Women who gain more weight in pregnancy are more likely to develop gestational diabetes, both due to weight gain and genetic predisposition factors. If the pregnant woman has cases of diabetes in the family, she must redouble the care with her diet.

Overweight women prior to pregnancy also tend to find it easier to have gestational diabetes. The greatest risks are that diabetics who do not control the disease before pregnancy can develop the disease more severely during pregnancy.

The chances of the baby being born with problems due to excess blood sugar are much greater than the woman who acquired diabetes during pregnancy. In most cases of pregnant women with gestational diabetes, the amount of insulin may not be produced in sufficient quantity to supply the need for mother and baby due to the acceleration of the natural metabolism of pregnancy so some pregnant women may have the need to inject insulin .

Natural foods are great for helping to control blood sugar in pregnancy.

Diabetes Treatment

The treatment of gestational diabetes is food control but in some pregnant women only the control of gestational diabetes with food may not be efficient and then, they will use insulin.

The food control must be done because not eating can cause discomfort due to a sudden drop in glucose in the blood, so eating every 3 hours in a correct and healthy way is essential. Anyway, the doctor and possibly a nutritionist will closely monitor the pregnant woman who has diabetes during pregnancy.

Babies of Mothers with Gestational Diabetes

Babies born to mothers with gestational diabetes should and will be cared for more closely after delivery. You will need extra care, as soon after delivery, the excess sugar they were used to can and will drop absurdly.

Provisions will be taken by the pediatrician and he will certainly come with medication to help the baby’s transition soon after delivery, he will have to get used to it without the amount of sugar he had in the womb.

Even babies of women who have controlled diabetes very well during pregnancy, can have their babies subjected to examinations and a careful evaluation by the pediatrician , but after this period, they will be allowed to go to the room like any other baby.

It is common to hear about giant babies,  weighing 5 or even 7 kg ! They are considered super babies and were certainly generated in a pregnancy with gestational diabetes. The doctor may be suspicious of gestational diabetes due to the uterine height or even the size of the baby on ultrasound but will confirm with tests such as the glycemic curve mentioned above.

In the case of gestational diabetes, the woman returns to the same condition as before pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is a disease exclusive to pregnancy.

See also: Pre Eclampsia – What It Is and How to Avoid

Dr. Alexis Hart
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My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.

Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.

Dr. Alexis Hart

My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.

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