Gestational diabetes happens during pregnancy. The reason for the occurance of gestational diabetes, is the excess sugar (glucose) in your blood during pregnancy. As your baby grows, the placenta produces more hormones that block the insulin and provoke a rise in blood sugar. This usually happens after the 20th week of the pregnancy.
If your are diagnosed with gestational diabetes it is very important to control it, since it may affect the placenta and endanger the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the baby. After your baby is born the gestational diabetes usually goes away, but sometimes it may increases the chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
Who is at risk ?
You may be at increased risk of gestational diabetes if:
- you are older than 25
- you are significantly owerweight with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher
- you suffer from prediabetes (slightly elevated blood sugar), had a gestational diabetes during a previous pregnancy or a close family member has a type 2 diabetes.
- you delivered a large baby who weighed more than 4.5 kg
What can I do to help control my condition?
During your prenatal care visits you will undergo several blood tests and you will be recommended to take a one-hour blood glucose challenge test to screen for gestational diabetes between week 24 and 28 of the pregnancy. Ways to control the gestational diabetes is to monitor the blood sugar carefully, keep a healthy diet with meals low in carbohydrates and undertake regular exercise suitable during preganacy such as yoga, pilates, walking or swimming. Sometimes diet and exercise are not enough and you need a medication to adjust the level of sugar in your blood.
If the gestational diabetes is detected, our dietitians can help plan meals and exercise program to cope with the condition. Our specialists in diabetology department are working in tight cooperation with the obstetricians to ensure the safety of you and your baby to be born.
If you are planning a pregnancy and are worried about being at risk of gestational diabetes, request and appointment with our diabetologist specialist for consultation.