PREGNANCY AND CHILDBIRTH

Gestational Diabetes Symptoms

By Temma Ehrenfeld @temmaehrenfeld
 | 
January 24, 2018

When you’re pregnant, you need to know the gestational diabetes symptoms and be sure you are screened, generally in the sixth or seventh month.

Expectant mothers usually are tested for gestational diabetes at some point, typically in the sixth or seventh month. If you are over the age of 35, overweight, or have a family history of diabetes, expect to be tested earlier and more than once. If you have gestational diabetes symptoms, get checked promptly.

What is gestational diabetes?

By the 24th week, your placenta is sending hefty amounts of hormones into you bloodstream that make it harder for your body to regulate your blood sugar level. In some cases, you can’t produce insulin to keep up. You may also hear the terms glucose intolerance or carbohydrate intolerance. This doesn’t mean you’ll have diabetes forever. If your gestational diabetes is diagnosed and managed properly, you’ll minimize the effect on Baby, and the condition should go away after delivery.

 

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What causes gestational diabetes?

We really don't know what causes gestational diabetes, but we do know what happens. Hormone production during pregnancy can affect how your body uses insulin, usually around 20 to 24 weeks. As your placenta grows to nurish your baby, it makes more of those horomones: estrogen, progesterone, cortisol, and human placental lactogen. The risk for insulin resistence goes up as a result because your pancreas may not be able to make enough insulin to overcome the effects of the additional hormones. Here's who may be at risk for gestational diabetes.

What are gestational diabetes symptoms?

The gestational diabetes symptoms include unusual thirst, frequent urination, fatigue, nausea, recurrent vaginal, bladder and skin infections, and blurred vision.

During a prenatal visit, you’ll need to drink a sweet liquid about an hour before giving blood. You may be nauseated. The results will tell your doctors whether you’re producing enough insulin.

If you do have gestational diabetes, your doctor may refer you to healthcare professionals who specialize in diabetes. You’ll need to monitor your blood glucose levels and possibly take insulin. You’ll be given instructions on dieting and exercise.

If your doctors miss the problem or you ignore advice, you increase the risk of problems. You’re more likely to have a delivery issue or need a C-section. Baby may be larger than normal, which sets her up for weight problems later on.

 

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Updated:  

May 24, 2018

Reviewed By:  

Janet O’Dell, RN