Diabetes can lead to problems during pregnancy for both the mother and the baby. Chances for birth defects and other complications increase if the mother’s diabetic condition is not given due consideration. However, one can avoid these problems and defects with proper healthcare measures and ob gyne consultations before and during pregnancy.
How does diabetes affect pregnancy?
The following issues arise in pregnancy as a result of diabetes:
- Congenital abnormalities – The baby is born with a missing or malformed part.
- Ketoacidosis – Ketones build up to dangerously high levels in the body.
- Stillbirth – The baby is born dead without any signs of life.
- Macrosomia – The newborn weighs much larger than average.
- Birth injury – It affects both the mother and the baby and occurs due to size abnormality.
- Hypoglycemia – The blood sugar drops down to dangerously low levels.
- Respiratory distress – Difficulty in breathing.
- Preeclampsia – It is a pregnancy condition characterized by a sudden rise in blood pressure, presence of protein in the urine, swollen limbs, etc.
- Spontaneous abortions – It is the termination of pregnancy before twenty weeks of gestation.
Diabetes treatment is, therefore, essential in the preconception period to avoid the above complications. Read on to learn more about preconception diabetes treatment.
The first step to battling diabetes is, being fully educated about all aspects related to it. Once you are knowledgeable about the issue, you can take the steps needed to make a plan to face the problem.
Maintaining blood glucose levels within a desirable range is essential during pregnancy. You can achieve this by incorporating specific self-management skills in your daily life. These include monitoring blood sugar levels on your own, administering insulin doses, developing a suitable meal plan, scheduling physical exercise, developing methods to reduce stress and maintain mental well-being.
Mapping out a detailed medical history is vital in diabetes care in the preconception period. This should include information regarding the diabetic condition, its type, duration, and management. Besides, data regarding acute and chronic medical complications, menstrual cycle, previous pregnancies, family medical history, medications, etc., should be included.
You should conduct a thorough physical examination. Focus on areas such as a retinal exam, cardiovascular exam, blood pressure measurement, etc., as trouble in these areas can affect pregnancy outcomes.
The laboratory evaluation’s focus should be primarily on the assessment of metabolic control and the detection of diabetic complications that could affect or be affected by pregnancy. Some of these tests are related to the measurement of creatinine, thyroid-stimulating hormone, the protein level in urine, etc.
The management plan for the initial stage should include the following:
- Selection of antihyperglycemic therapy.
- Counselling prospective parents about the risk of congenital anomalies and discussing preventive measures with them.
- Establishing a plan to achieve low-risk glycemia.
After the initial stages and tests, expecting parents should be met with every one to two months. This is done to ensure that they are knowledgeable about the management plan and have adopted changes to their lifestyle. Frequent monitoring can also help in ascertaining the medical condition and glucose levels of the mother. If any issues come to the forefront, these can be treated accordingly.
For more information on diabetes in the preconception period and associated treatment, visit IBO, the leading medical center in Sharjah. Our gynecologists in Sharjah will help you in dealing with pre-conception diabetes. With the assistance of the best gynecologists in Sharjah, you can have a smooth pregnancy.