Gestational diabetes, although, does not mean that the patient was previously diabetic or will develop it afterwards for sure | Photo credit: Pexels
- Diabetes is a condition characterised by abnormal blood sugar levels and decreased insulin sensitivity
- Patients develop high blood sugar levels sometime around the 24th or 25th week of pregnancy
- During pregnancy, the body itself becomes slightly resistant to insulin
New Delhi: Diabetes is a condition characterised by abnormal blood sugar levels, decreased insulin sensitivity and more. However, the one form of this condition that stands out is gestational diabetes. An occurrence in pregnant women, gestational diabetes refers to a state wherein women develop high blood sugar levels sometime around the 24th or 25th week of pregnancy.
Gestational diabetes, although, does not mean that the patient was previously diabetic or will develop it afterwards for sure. However, mismanagement can not only increase risk of developing type-2 diabetes later, but can also put the baby at risk of being diabetic and can cause complications in the pregnancy.
Causes and risk factors of gestational diabetes
Come to think of gestational diabetes, experts do not blame the condition on a particular risk factor. However, it is believed that hormones have a role to play – those that can spike insulin resistance. On one hand, these hormones help sustain the pregnancy and affect the placenta, but they also decrease insulin sensitivity thereby increasing blood sugar levels in the body.
During pregnancy, the body itself becomes slightly resistant to insulin so that food can break down into glucose easily and can be passed on to the baby through blood. When this insulin resistance becomes way too strong in the body, the patient becomes prone to gestational diabetes.
Some women are at a higher risk of gestational diabetes owing to certain risk factors. These include:
- History of gestational diabetes
- History of unexplained miscarriage or stillbirth
- Family history of diabetes
- Obesity before pregnancy
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Being above 25 years of age
- Expecting multiple babies in the same pregnancy
- Being prediabetic
Symptoms of gestational diabetes
According to Harvard Health, some of the most common symptoms of gestational diabetes include:
- Increased frequency or urination
- Excessive thirst
- Blurred vision
- Yeast infection
- Unexplained weight loss
Some of these are classic pregnancy symptoms that are part of the morning sickness routine and can be confused with gestational diabetes. Therefore, it is important to check with your ob-gyn regularly to ensure whether it is morning sickness or an early sign of gestational diabetes.
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purpose only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.