Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Are You Suffering Gestational Diabetes?

Are You Suffering Gestational Diabetes?

During pregnancy, women can develop a form of diabetes known as gestational diabetes. In most cases, these women have never been diagnosed with this condition before their pregnancies. Although gestational diabetes places the woman’s pregnancy in a high risk category, it is more than possible for her to have a normal delivery and birth with the proper medical treatment.

Approximately 4 % of pregnant women will develop this condition. With diabetes in the pregnant woman, the blood sugar or glucose level becomes elevated. This can lead to medical complications for both the mother and child. Therefore, the woman needs to follow special precautions throughout the pregnancy.

When gestational diabetes develops in a person, the body experiences difficulty processing any sugar or any glucose. In a person without diabetes, the sugar is processed into energy that the body uses to perform daily activities and functions. Since the sugar is not getting processed properly, both the mother and the baby could gain more weight than is desirable.

It is possible that the hormones pregnancy generates circumvent the proper use of insulin during the pregnancy. Without the proper amount of insulin, the blood sugar cannot be processes. Hence, a build up of blood sugar occurs along with the development of gestational diabetes.

One of the steps that needs to be taken when gestational diabetes occurs is to monitor the woman’s weight gain carefully as well as her blood sugar levels. Two changes are usually incorporated into a pregnant woman’s lifestyle if she is diagnosed with gestational diabetes or with a great risk for developing it.

The first is to restrict the calorie intake by limiting certain foods, specifically simple sugars such as candy, cakes, cookies, and pies. The second is to increase the woman’s level of exercise during the pregnancy to restrict weight gain. Severe cases of gestational diabetes might require medical treatment, such as insulin injections, this is often very rare.

The likelihood of developing this disease is small since it only affects approximately 4 % of pregnant women. Moreover, certain risk factors can be used to predict the chances of a pregnant woman developing this disease.

One of the risk factors for developing gestational diabetes is the existence of a first order relative who has diabetes type 2. Having a large baby who was nine pounds or more during a previous pregnancy is also a risk factor. In most cases that involve gestational diabetes, the disease goes away once the woman has delivered her baby.
The midwife and the doctor will take care of you if you do develop gestational diabetes. Rest and care will go a long way to aid a person if they do come down with gestational diabetes.

By: Marlon Dirk

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