If you have recently been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, you could have a million questions swirling through your head. Thankfully, gestational diabetes doesn’t always mean you’ll have diabetes after you’ve given birth, though there is a chance of developing it. Keep reading to learn more about gestational diabetes and how you can cope.
Where does Gestational Diabetes come from?
Gestational diabetes only occurs during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes means that you have high blood sugar levels now, but that those levels were normal before you got pregnant. Essentially, your placenta makes hormones that may lead to a buildup of glucose in your blood. Usually, your pancreas can make enough insulin to handle the buildup. If your pancreas can’t keep up, your blood sugar levels will rise which can cause gestational diabetes. Don’t worry, though. If you have it, you can still have a healthy baby. You will want to talk to your doctor about simple things you can do to manage your blood sugar levels.
After your baby is born, gestational diabetes usually goes away on its own. Gestational diabetes makes you more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, so it may be worth following up with your physician.
Diagnosing Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes generally develops in the second half of pregnancy. Your doctor will check to see if you have gestational diabetes between weeks 24 and 28 of your pregnancy. If you have some risk factors, your doctor may test sooner into your pregnancy.
To test for gestational diabetes, you will drink a sugary drink to raise your blood sugar levels. An hour later, a blood test will be taken to see how your body handled the sugar. If the results show that your blood sugar is higher than a certain cutoff, you may require more tests. If your results are normal but you have a high risk of getting gestational diabetes, your doctor may monitor and re-check for gestational diabetes later.
Your physician will track how much weight you gain over your pregnancy and will update you if you need to take medicine to manage your gestational diabetes. If you have questions, give us a call at (614) 755-4200 today to learn more.