Gestational Diabetes is a type of Diabetes occurs only during pregnancy. It is detected only in women. Gestational diabetes during pregnancy is very commonly seen in many women across the globe.

Hormonal changes in the women in the pregnancy time increases blood sugar levels to high levels which develop Gestational Diabetes. Gestational diabetes have includes various risks and side effects. If a gestational diabetes is not treated at the right time, it affects both mother and baby.

Statistics of Gestational Diabetes:

On an average 2.5% of women develop gestational diabetes.7-9% women can develop risk factors of gestational diabetes during pregnancy.

Causes of Gestational Diabetes:


Gestational Diabetes cause when women body won't get enough insulin during pregnancy. Insulin is a hormone present behind the stomach in the pancreas.

It provides glucose to the body to maintain proper and neutral sugar levels and helps to energize the body. During pregnancy, every woman undergoes various hormonal and body changes like weight gain, etc.

At this point, body unable to use enough insulin content for pancreas as per requirement, this condition is known as Insulin Resistance. Through Insulin Resistance the insulin quantity is increased.

Insulin Resistance happens to women at different times such as during late pregnancy or during pregnancy depending on the health condition and weight. Mostly, Overweight people face gestational diabetes during pregnancy.

What happens to the Women already with Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes?

A woman already suffering from Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes should consult the doctor before planning for pregnancy. Ignored, untreated, uncontrolled diabetes will leads to various severe problems to the baby. Proper planning, controls over diabetic, regular medication, monthly checkups are must for every woman.

Symptoms of Gestational Diabetes:

There cannot be seen any major symptoms or signs of gestational diabetes during pregnancy or before getting pregnant. Some of the gestational diabetes symptoms are similar to the type-2 diabetes symptoms and few are listed below.

  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Sugar in Urine
  • Blurred Vision
  • Unusual thirst
  • Continuous urination or wee
  • Frequent vaginal, bladder and skin infections

Risk Factors of Gestational Diabetes:

The risk factors for gestational diabetes during pregnancy include the following.

  • Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes before pregnancy
  • Excess amount of belly fat or abdominal fat
  • More time spent on bed rest at the time of pregnancy can also create gestational diabetes
  • Family history of having gestational diabetes during pregnancy or any other types of diabetes
  • Overweight than age and height which decreases the insulin level flow to the pancreas and blood sugar level increases rapidly due to an insufficient amount of insulin.
  • Previous pregnancy people affected with gestational diabetics
  • To those mothers whose baby born with large weight (above 4kgs) in previous pregnancy

Does Gestational Diabetes effects baby?

Gestational Diabetes has adverse effect on both mother and her offspring with short-term and long-term health consequences. If it is treated properly and at the right time there would be no harm to either mother or her newly born baby.

If there is no extra care and regular checkup on sugar levels, the blood sugar will circulate throughout the body in the form of blood and if excess sugar enters fetal then there would be the severe effect on women and unborn baby. This may also increase difficulties in normal delivery and can cause C-Section. Uncontrolled diabetics will starts affecting unborn baby after the birth with the following conditions.

  • Jaundice
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Low blood sugar levels

Later on, as age increase, there are chances of getting obesity, type 2 diabetics to that baby. If mother's control their blood sugar levels then there are chances of getting affected by these symptoms.

Tests to Diagnose Gestational Diabetes (GD):

The GD is diagnosed by blood test. There would be an initial screen test for pregnant women. The screen test follows the following major aspects.

Screening guidelines for gestational diabetes during pregnancy:

  • It is mandatory to go through screening test of gestational diabetes during pregnancy.
  • Generally, this test is done between 24th to 28th weeks of pregnancy.
  • Women with this condition in a previous pregnancy should get this test in starting stage of the pregnancy.
  • Few women might get the chance of taking this test in an early stage due to the health conditions if any risk factors or symptoms are noticed.

Other General Tests for GD:

  • Ones the screening test is completed, Glucose tolerance test is conducted to check the glucose levels in the body by making patient to drink sugary beverages. After drinking, the test is conducted after one hour.
  • If the glucose tolerance test is not normal further tests are conducted.
  • Another type of test is Oral Glucose Challenge Test (OGTT), This also takes 3 hours gap between test and drinking sugary beverages.
  • Glycosylated hemoglobin or hemoglobin A1c is another type of test which is conducted according to the situation and the previous test results.

{ Also Read: Frequently asked questions about pregnancy }

Treatments for Gestational Diabetes:

The primary target of treating gestational diabetes during pregnancy is controlling blood sugar levels within the body to keep mother and baby duo safe and healthy. The treatment of gestational diabetes doesn't include much hospital treatments.

They can be treated in a natural way with the help of regular doctor and yourself. Follow the below mentioned steps to treat and control Gestational diabetes during pregnancy.

  • Start your day with regular exercises
  • Eat healthy food which contains plenty of minerals, nutrition, proteins and other needed components.
  • Choose your foods under the guidance of general physician and dietician
  • Get involved in more physical activities
  • Go for regular, monthly checkups
  • Observe and Make a note of blood sugar levels
  • Take insulin shots, only if necessary and only if your doctor prescribed you.

Special Diet for women with Gestational Diabetes:

  • Eat healthy food.
  • Include more fruits, veggies and green leafy vegetables in meals.
  • Make sure to add high fiber content foods such as fruits, veggies, whole-grains.
  • Never skip any of the meal time at any cost.
  • Consult a dietitian and follow proper diet chart.
  • Choose food menu according to the diabetic levels.
  • Eat in smaller and moderate quantity and eat number of times.

How to prevent Gestational Diabetes?

  • Stay healthy by adopting healthy life
  • Start eating healthy, organic and natural food
  • Maintain proper diet by following appropriate food log.
  • Get monthly diabetic checkups if a diabetic is already present.
  • Exercise every day such as yoga, meditation, gym, walking, etc.
  • Extra care is must during the pregnancy period.

There are cases where women usually get gestational diabetes during pregnancy and treated automatically and prevented after pregnancy. So, take extra care of your pregnancy. Control your diabetic levels! Eat healthily! Stay strong! Live Long Happily both mother and baby duo!

We welcome your comments on this post

Author's Bio: Ashreetha Pendkar Is a Healthcare writer, trainer and Digital marketing expert, she loves to read healthcare content and spreading her words about the importance of the health to near & dears. 


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