Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that pregnant women can get. It’s important to control diabetes during pregnancy because it can have a negative impact on both the mother and child. In most cases, gestational diabetes goes away after the baby is born. But it can increase the mother’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes or diabetes mellitus later in life. The insulin resistance phenomenon seen in gestational diabetic patients reduces the proportionality of beta cells in the pancreas. Diabetes during pregnancy can induce overgrowth in the fetus and make delivery earlier than predicted. In these cases, cesarean delivery is often opted for as a secured means of delivery. If not considered, it may even lead to a life-threatening high blood pressure condition known as pre-eclampsia.
Earlier detection of gestational diabetes is crucial in preventing many of its potential complications. The Glucose Tolerance Test is a major screening test done among pregnant women, typically during the 24th and 28th weeks of the pregnancy period. This test compares the level of glucose in the blood before and after eating. If the test results show a glucose level higher than the normal value after eating, then she should take control over her diet. This kind of diabetes is referred to as type A1 gestational diabetes. However, in some cases, there will be an abnormal glucose level present both before and after food intake.
In this case, accurate insulin dosage is given to regulate the blood glucose level. A urine test is also done among some pregnant women to detect gestational diabetes. The risk of getting gestational diabetes increases with the patient’s age and family history. Frequent urination, thirst, tiredness, vomiting, and eye problems are some of the symptoms shown by gestational diabetic patients.
When a fetus is taking their food from the mother, they will be growing in a hyperglycemic placental environment in the womb. The increased action of insulin stimulates the production of growth hormones, which then causes the baby to get fattier, leading to macrosomia. Overweight and obesity developed due to macrosomia creates problems during pregnancy. In some cases, a cesarean delivery may be needed instead of a vaginal delivery. This can reduce the metabolization rate in newborn babies, leading to the accumulation of fatty acids. This, in turn, can result in low insulin secretion, which can impact a baby’s metabolic activities.
According to recent studies, these babies are more prone to developing type 2 diabetes later in life. In order to help combat this, many hospitals offer seminars and counseling programs on gestational diabetes. These programs aim to educate and raise awareness about the disease. If you’re pregnant, it’s important to be in control of what you eat – especially when it comes to foods high in carbohydrates. Prepare a planned diet and make sure to stay active with adequate exercise. Regular check-ups and making lifestyle changes accordingly are key in managing gestational diabetes.