Gestational Diabetes Specialist Brisbane Northside
Many women in Brisbane northside develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy. It can be difficult for those diagnosed with this condition since it entails extra care and might put the baby’s health at risk. It is important to work with a gestational diabetes specialist who will help you have a safe pregnancy and overcome this disease once you have given birth.
Gestational diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels increase during pregnancy. To determine if one has diabetes, the patient is recommended to take a pregnancy oral glucose tolerance test (POGTT). It is usually performed during 24 to 28 weeks into the pregnancy, or earlier if the patient is at high risk. The test involves fasting overnight and having a blood test in the morning. Then, she needs to take a drink that contains 75 grams of glucose followed by blood tests after one and two hours of sugar intake. If the results show an increase in her blood sugar levels, she may have gestational diabetes.
Risks of Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes usually disappears after giving birth, but women may be at risk to develop type 2 diabetes later in life. Thus, it is important to get tested every 2 to 3 years. Other risks include:
- Having a large baby at risk of injury at delivery
- Pregnancy loss
- Premature delivery
Managing Gestational Diabetes
- Monitor blood sugar levels. The goal is to keep the blood glucose levels within a normal range. A gestational diabetes specialist can demonstrate how to administer checking blood sugar levels and the right time to do it, and help the patient understand blood sugar patterns. However, if blood sugar levels could not be managed despite having a healthy diet and regular physical activity, medication might be necessary.
- Healthy diet. The goal is to maintain a healthy weight. Thus, it is advisable to avoid food and beverage that contain lots of sugar and high fat content. Choose foods high in fiber, calcium, iron, and folic acid, and some carbohydrates in the diet. The patient can also work with a dietician for meal planning and make healthier food choices for the baby.
- Regular physical activity. Keeping active while pregnant is proven to have many benefits, also the same for those with gestational diabetes. Physical activities might help lower blood sugar levels and reduce insulin resistance. Activities like walking after every meal, going swimming or cycling a few times a week can help. Also, try to avoid long periods of sitting down. Before performing any exercise, it is advisable to consult a doctor.
- Insulin injections. Some women might need insulin injections throughout pregnancy to keep blood sugar levels in a normal range. This is the safest option since the medication does not cross the placenta from the mother to the baby. After birth, women no longer need to be administered with insulin.
After Giving Birth
It is important to measure the patient’s blood sugar levels 6 to 12 weeks after birth to make sure gestational diabetes is gone. However, this does not automatically mean the baby has diabetes but may be at risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life. It is important to work with a specialist and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to prevent diabetes in the future.