Pregnancy that is healthy for women with Diabetes

doctor listens to a pregnant woman’s belly with a stethoscope

If you have diabetes, there are special problems you have to address to ensure your health. If you’re pregnant and suffer from diabetes, you are facing unique difficulties. However, it is possible to enjoy an uninjured pregnancy even being a diabetic. It’s just a matter of taking extra care prior to and during your pregnancy.

What exactly is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition that is caused by the body’s inability to create or use the hormone insulin correctly. It can cause excess blood glucose (sugar) to accumulate within the blood. This could lead to serious health issues, like kidney failure, heart disease or even blindness. The three most frequent forms of diabetics are

  • Type 1. It occurs when the body isn’t producing enough insulin. You need to take insulin to manage it.
  • Type 2. This happens when your body isn’t producing enough insulin or responds to insulin the way it is supposed to. Sometimes, it can be managed through exercise and diet. Certain people require insulin or take medication to treat it.
  • Gestational diabetes. This is a specific kind of diabetes that pregnant women suffer from. It typically disappears soon after the baby’s birth. It’s not the same as having diabetes prior to becoming expecting. But, it puts you at a higher risk of becoming Type 2 diabetes in later times.

What are the effects of diabetes on a woman who is pregnant?

If diabetes is treated properly with blood sugar levels managed it is unlikely to cause issues. But, if your blood sugar levels aren’t adequately controlled, diabetes can create issues for pregnant women which include:

  • This can make some of the long-term complications with diabetes more severe. These include eye issues and kidney diseases.
  • increasing the chance for developing preeclampsia. This is when you experience high blood pressure as well as too high levels of protein found in urine. It could cause severe or life-threatening complications for both you and your child.
  • increasing the chance of having a miscarriage, or stillbirth. A miscarriage is the death of a child before 20 weeks. Stillbirth is when that the baby dies inside the womb after 20 weeks.
  • The higher the probability that you’ll need an Caesarean Section. Also called a C-section, this is the surgical procedures are performed to birth the infant via the stomach of the mother. It can take much longer to recuperate for the mother, and has the potential for complications, just like any surgical procedure.

How does diabetes affect a developing baby?

High blood sugar levels could harm your baby before it starts to grow. The consequences of this include:

    • Birth defect.The baby’s organs form in the first two weeks of gestation. Uncontrolled blood sugar may affect these organs and lead to birth defects. This includes defects in the spine, brain and the heart.
    • A big baby.When your blood sugar is high, your baby’s blood sugar is also high. The baby can become larger than normal. It could cause issues when it comes to delivery for both the mother and baby. The larger babies can also have a higher chance of becoming overweight or suffer from diabetes when they reach a certain age.
    • preterm birth.This is when the baby is born prematurely. Infants born early are more likely to experiencing problems with breathing as well as their heart, intestines and vision. Diabetes sufferers tend to deliver their babies prematurely.

             A low blood sugar.When a mother doesn’t manage her blood sugar levels during the pregnancy her baby’s blood sugar levels can fall extremely low following the birth. This is a serious issue and requires prompt treatment.

The path to better health

If your diabetes is under control as well as blood sugar levels are within the healthy range, you improve your likelihood for having a healthful child. Follow these guidelines to enjoy an ideal pregnancy even if you are suffering from diabetes.


Do your planning ahead

Schedule appointments with your physician prior to when you get pregnant. They may test your blood to see if the diabetes affects your body. They will assist you in getting those blood sugar levels in check and will ensure that it is safe to be pregnant.

See your doctor

If you suffer from diabetes, it is important to visit your doctor more frequently than if you did not have diabetes. Make sure you attend all your prenatal appointments, and follow your doctor’s directions. Consult your physician if you need to see an Ophthalmologist (eye physician) or a nephrologist (kidney specialist) throughout your pregnancy.

Healthy eating

Visit a dietitian in the event that you do not have one. They can help you develop a nutritious diet plan to aid in keeping those blood sugar levels in control. Make sure you follow the plan and consume an appropriate diet to ensure that your child will remain fit and healthy.


Exercise is a vital aspect of managing diabetes, especially when you’re expecting it. It balances your intake of food and helps keep your blood sugar in check. Try to do at least 30 minutes of activity five days per week.

Get your medication

If it’s the pills for diabetes, vitamins or insulin, you should use your medication as the doctor recommends. You may need to alter what you are taking once you are pregnant. Certain women who have two types of diabetes could require hormones during the pregnancy. In other cases the condition can be managed by taking oral medications. Even if you’re taking insulin prior to getting pregnant, the dosage you’ll need to take will vary during pregnancy. Follow the directions of your physician. The dosage of medicine could vary as you progress through your pregnancy.

Check your blood sugar regularly

Your blood sugar levels may rapidly change during pregnancy. Follow your doctor’s advice and test your sugar levels frequently. This allows you to observe how diet, exercise choices, insulin or any other medications influence the blood sugar level. This will allow you to adjust your levels according to the need. It also allows you to determine how your blood sugar levels are becoming too low, before you get a serious reaction. Stress and illness may also influence the level of blood sugar.

Be sure to follow other guidelines for a healthy pregnancy

As with all pregnant women, there are some steps you must take to ensure your health and your child.

  • Do not smoking. It can increase your chances of having a premature or still-born infant. Additionally, it can increase the risk of developing health complications related to diabetes like eye kidney, heart, or disease.
  • Beware of alcohol. Alcohol can lead to severe problems in your child which could impact it throughout its existence.
  • Get your vitamin.Folic acid is an essential vitamin that you should take during pregnancy. It is recommended to start taking it prior to becoming pregnant, and continue it throughout the pregnancy. Consult your physician about how much Folic acid you need to be taking, and what other vitamins that you should be taking.

Things to think about

The body undergoes a variety of changes during pregnancy. These changes could alter your blood sugar levels at any moment. These changes can also impact the way it is controlled by your diabetic. Even if your diabetes may have been controlled previously, it is possible that you might have to alter your routine. This is the case for your food program, your workout routine, as well as the medications you are taking. When your child’s development progresses you may have to modify your plan of care. Be flexible and follow your doctor. Follow their directions. Be sure to take care of yourself and check the levels of your blood sugar to aim to have an uninvolved pregnancy.


When you have given birth (usually in a hospital) your pediatrician will test your baby’s blood sugar levels. Your baby is receiving your blood glucose (and making insulin extra to make up for it) and may require time to adjust.

Your insulin needs will also decline–drastically–which puts you at risk for hypoglycemia too. Within a matter of hours your blood glucose levels could be returning to levels they were prior to when you got pregnant.

Consult your physician within two weeks for a health checkup. If you suffer from type 2 diabetes, but were not previously taking insulin, you may be able to transition back to a prescription medication that you can take orally, although certain women prefer to remain with insulin for longer as it isn’t absorbed into the breast milk.

Whichever treatment you choose breastfeeding is highly suggested by the majority of healthcare professionals. It can lower blood sugar and infants who exclusively breastfeed are more likely to be diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Not only that, studies have shown that women with gestational diabetes are less at risk of chance of developing type 2 diabetes later on if they continue to feed their babies.

It is important to note that breastfeeding requires lots of energy. To prevent the risk of dangerous low blood sugar, be sure to test your blood sugar prior to breastfeeding and, if it’s not already elevated, eat an energy-dense snack.

Be aware it is a common occurrence among women who suffer from diabetes. If you are managing diabetes as well as caring for a new baby as well as sleep deprivation and major hormonal changes and you’re in the middle of the ingredients for a dangerous mood condition. If you’re experiencing “baby blues” don’t improve after two weeks, or you’re overwhelmed by sadness or are worried about damaging yourself, or even your child and/or your child, dial 911 Suicide Crisis and Lifeline. If you have a checkup with your doctor, inform them that you’re sick so that they can treat you and begin to feel better.

Questions you can ask your doctor

  • What can I do to control my blood sugar levels?
  • What is the best time to test my blood sugar levels?
  • Do I have to take diabetes medication or insulin?
  • Can it be considered safe for a child to be taking diabetes medication?
  • Do I have to supplement or take vitamins?
  • Should I consult an dietitian?
  • Should I consult an ophthalmologist?
  • What exercises should I try to stay fit while pregnant?
  • Do I have the ability to feed my baby?

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