One of the most common problems that a woman might have with pregnancy is gestational diabetes. This occurs in about 4% of the pregnancies in the United States, or around 130,000 women each year. Here are some details about gestational diabetes.This can occur with just about any pregnancy.
It does not matter whether or not a woman has had diabetes previously, or even shown any symptoms at any time.The women that are most likely to get gestational diabetes during pregnancy are ethnic women who are Hispanic, African American, American Indian, and Asians. Their risk level is increased even more if there has been a family history of diabetes, are a little older, and somewhat obese.
It is not entirely certain as to what causes gestational diabetes, but it likely is caused by the same conditions that would cause diabetes in anyone else – the metabolic syndrome. This basically is a condition caused by extra fat
around the abdomen, along with high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels. The baby that is developing in the
mother helps create the conditions that set up a greater insulin resistance, or there is not enough insulin being
There are risks both to the mother and to the baby. Generally, the baby may be larger, which is typical of mothers with gestational diabetes. The doctor will need to recommend the mother eat healthy during the pregnancy and her blood sugar will need to be watched. The baby could have some organ damage due to the higher blood sugar levels if it goes uncontrolled. After birth, the baby’s blood sugar levels will be checked since the insulin production may be too high immediately following birth.
Depending on how well it was controlled during the pregnancy, it is possible that the child could become diabetic early in life. This is largely due to the fact that the child is more apt to be overweight early in life. The mother is also more likely to develop diabetes later on – within about 9 years. Babies can grow much larger if your gestational diabetes remains uncontrolled – or poorly controlled. This could put the mother at a greater risk for preclampsia – at about twice the possibility.
Also, there is a greater possibility of the baby being stillborn if it is uncontrolled in the last two months of pregnancy. Besides that, a large baby may need to be taken by C- section because it is just too big for natural childbirth. It is very important that your doctor check your blood for the possibility of gestational diabetes.
There often are no noticeable symptoms, so it will take a blood test to determine the presence of high blood sugar levels. Once it is detected, then steps can be taken to correct it. He or she can also recommend a proper healthy diet and prescribe any medication that may be needed during the pregnancy. In most cases, all that you may need is to have the right diet.