Lifeline: Diabetes During Pregnancy - Symptoms, Risks and Treatment
Lifeline: Diabetes During Pregnancy – Symptoms, Risks and Treatment
Diabetes is a serious disease in which your body cannot properly control the amount of sugar in your blood because it does not have enough insulin. Diabetes is the most common medical complication during pregnancy, representing 3.3% of all live births. No matter what type of diabetes you have, there are many steps you and your health care team can take in order to have a safe and healthy pregnancy.
What are the causes and symptoms of diabetes?
There are two primary types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that requires daily use of insulin. Symptoms of Type 1 may include increased thirst and urination, constant hunger, weight loss, blurred vision, and extreme fatigue. Often diagnosed in childhood and in young adults, this type of diabetes accounts for about 5 to 10% of diagnosed cases in the United States.
What are the risks of diabetes to my unborn child?
There are a few potentially negative health risks to the baby when the mother has diabetes.
Macrosomia is a condition in which your baby grows too large due to excess insulin crossing the placenta. A large baby can make vaginal delivery difficult and increase the risk of injury to the baby during the birth process.
Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, can develop shortly after birth due to high insulin levels. Controlling your own blood sugar can help to lower the risks of hypoglycemia for your baby.
Jaundice is a yellowish discoloration of the skin and eyes and can sometimes be attributed to diabetes while pregnant. Your pediatric care provider will assist you with a plan to alleviate this condition for your newborn.
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