Gestational Diabetes – What You Should Know

By Kaci Dyson

May 15, 2020

L&D RN/Wife/Mom of two on a MISSION to make MOM-ING EASIER. Prenatal & Childbirth Educator/Sleep Training/Lactation Counselor in San Angelo, TX

Ok Mama! What the heck?! Here you are pregnant and wanting to eat all the stuff, because well, pregnancy. Then you find out you have gestational diabetes. Now, all the sudden you are finally feeling so much better from the first trimester vomits, have all the cravings, and now you have to watch what you are eating. So. Not. Fair! I feel you!!

What is Gestational Diabetes?

At or around 28 weeks gestation your provider will order a glucose tolerance test. This is a very high sugar drink, unfortunately it’s not the most delicious form of sugar you’ll ever drink. This is to test for a build up of extra sugar in your bloodstream that happens when your body is unable to use the sugars and starches from food to make energy. Also, known as gestational diabetes.

So, what is the big deal? Gestational Diabetes can affect you and your baby if not managed appropriately. Some of these issues include:

  • Growing a very large baby (more than 9 lbs), which can cause issues with delivery for you and your baby. For example a cesarean section or assisted vaginal delivery.
  • Your baby could suffer from unstable blood sugar after birth.
  • You are at a higher risk for developing preeclampsia (high blood pressure), another disease of pregnancy that can make you very sick.
  • Your baby is at an increased risk to be obese during childhood

How can you help to keep your Blood Sugars under control?

  • See your doctor regularly
  • Eat healthy foods and stay active
  • Develop a meal plan for yourself
  • Learn which foods to avoid

If your doctor has prescribed you medication, take it as directed. Report any issues you are experiencing with the medication right away.

Monitoring your blood sugar often can help you manage it appropriately, as it fluctuates throughout the day

Mama, if you are noticing increased thirst, headaches, voiding (peeing) more frequently than normal for your pregnancy, difficulty paying attention, blurred vision, yeast infections, or feeling weak, report these signs to your doctor as you may need to be tested or have further testing done to rule out gestational diabetes or to manage your current diagnosis better.

On the other hand, if you have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes and are feeling dizzy, shaky, confused, sweaty, weakness, cranky, anxious, or like your heart is beating too fast, check your blood sugar as it could be too low. If it is too low, you need to eat or drink a quick source of sugar and recheck your blood sugar in about 15 minutes. When you are feeling better eat a snack high in protein. Always communicate with your doctor. Be honest with them about your blood sugar levels so they can manage it correctly.

Typically, gestational diabetes will go away after delivery of that little (or big) bun in the oven, but sometimes it stays. Pay attention to your body after the baby is born and report it to your doctor at your postpartum follow up.

And Mama, don’t forget to reach out to us!! We can help you build a stash of colostrum before the baby comes!! In case, your baby needs extra supplementation due to low blood sugars after birth!! You got this and we are here for you!!!

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