March 19, 2012
It's a condition that impacts a small percentage of pregnant women, and can later be harmful to their baby. Nurse practitioner Barbara Martin, of Martha Jefferson Hospital's diabetes education program, says gestational diabetes is what's going around this week.
Martin says that the condition often has no symptoms, but when it does it includes fatigue, increased urination, increased thirst, weight loss with increased appetite, nausea and vomiting, frequent infections and blurred vision.
Women over the age of 25 and those with a family history of diabetes are more at risk for the condition. It typically resolves after delivery.
When it comes to treatment, Martin suggests monitoring four specific areas: eat healthy foods high in fiber, don't add any new strenuous exercise programs, take insulin during your pregnancy if it was prescribed to you and monitor your glucose levels.
Martin says the best way to prevent gestational diabetes is by losing weight prior to getting pregnant if you're overweight.
Women who have had gestational diabetes and their babies are at increased risk of type II diabetes in the future. To minimize that risk, attain and maintain ideal body weight, eat healthy, and get regular check ups.