Can Preexisting Diabetes Cause Problems During Pregnancy
Yes. If its not managed well, diabetes can increase your risk for complications during pregnancy, including:
Most babies born to women with preexisting diabetes are healthy after birth. But preexisting diabetes can increase your babys risk for health problems, including:
- Autism spectrum disorder. A group of developmental disabilities that can cause social, communication and behavior challenges. Developmental disabilities are problems with how the brain works that can cause a person to have trouble or delays in physical development, learning, communicating, taking care of himself or getting along with others.
- Enlarged organs if your baby is very large
- Jaundice. This is when a baby’s eyes and skin look yellow because his liver isnt fully developed or isnt working.
- Obesity later in life. Obesity is being very overweight. It means you have an excess amount of body fat and a body mass index of 30 or higher. To find out your BMI, go to cdc.gov/bmi.
- Hypoglycemia and polycythemia. Polycythemia is when the body makes too many red blood cells which causes the blood to be thick.
- Respiratory distress syndrome . This is a breathing problem caused when babies dont have enough surfactant in their lungs. Surfactant is a protein that keeps the small air sacs in the lungs from collapsing.
Being Overweight Or Obese
You’re more likely to develop type 2 diabetes if you’re overweight or obese with a body mass index of 30 or more.
Fat around your tummy particularly increases your risk. This is because it releases chemicals that can upset the body’s cardiovascular and metabolic systems.
Measuring your waist is a quick way of assessing your diabetes risk. This is a measure of abdominal obesity, which is a particularly high-risk form of obesity.
Women have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes if their waist measures 80cm or more.
Asian men with a waist size of 89cm or more have a higher risk, as do white or black men with a waist size of 94cm or more.
Exercising regularly and reducing your body weight by about 5% could reduce your risk of getting diabetes by more than 50%.
Read about measuring your waist size
What Is Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes, the most common type of diabetes, is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes mainly from the food you eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose get into your cells to be used for energy. In type 2 diabetes, your body doesnt make enough insulin or doesnt use insulin well. Too much glucose then stays in your blood, and not enough reaches your cells.
The good news is that you can take steps to prevent or delay the development of type 2 diabetes.
Don’t Miss: Insulin Resistance Hypoglycemia
What Happens With Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes develops over a long period of time . During this period of time insulin resistance starts, this is where the insulin is increasingly ineffective at managing the blood glucose levels. As a result of this insulin resistance, the pancreas responds by producing greater and greater amounts of insulin, to try and achieve some degree of management of the blood glucose levels.
As insulin overproduction occurs over a very long period of time, the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas wear themselves out, so that by the time someone is diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, they have lost 50 70% of their insulin-producing cells. This means type 2 diabetes is a combination of ineffective insulin and not enough insulin. Lifestyle changes may be able to slow this process in some people.
Initially, type 2 diabetes can often be managed with healthy eating and regular physical activity. Over time many people with type 2 diabetes will also need tablets and some may eventually require insulin. It is important to note that this is normal, and taking tablets or insulin as soon as they are required can result in fewer long-term complications.
How Does Diabetes Lead To Amputation
Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to poor blood flow . Without oxygen and nutrients , you are more prone to the development of cuts and sores that can lead to infections that cant fully heal. Areas of your body that are farthest away from your heart are more likely to experience the effects of poor blood flow. So areas of your body like your toes, feet, legs and fingers are more likely to be amputated if infection develops and healing is poor.
Also Check: How To Keep Blood Sugar From Dropping
How Does Diabetes Affect The Body
There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.
Both types of diabetes are chronic diseases that affect the way your body regulates blood sugar, or glucose. Glucose is the fuel that feeds your bodys cells, but to enter your cells it needs a key. Insulin is that key.
People with type 1 diabetes dont produce insulin. You can think of it as not having a key.
People with type 2 diabetes dont respond to insulin as well as they should and later in the disease often dont make enough insulin. You can think of it as having a broken key.
People with type 1 and type 2 diabetes may also have numbness and tingling in their hands or feet. Good glucose management significantly reduces the risk of developing numbness and tingling in someone with type 1 diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association .
Although many of the symptoms of type 1 and type 2 diabetes are similar, they present in very different ways.
Many people with type 2 diabetes wont have symptoms for many years, and their symptoms often develop slowly over the course of time. Some people with type 2 diabetes have no symptoms at all and dont discover they have the condition until complications arise.
Type 1 and type 2 diabetes may have similar names, but theyre different diseases with unique causes.
How Are Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes Treated
Theres no cure for type 1 diabetes. People with type 1 diabetes dont produce insulin, so it must be regularly injected into the body.
Some people take injections into soft tissue, such as the stomach, arm, or buttocks, several times per day. Other people use insulin pumps. Insulin pumps supply a steady amount of insulin into the body through a small tube.
Blood sugar testing is an essential part of managing type 1 diabetes, because levels can go up and down quickly.
Type 2 diabetes can be managed and even reversed with diet and exercise alone, but many people need extra support. If lifestyle changes arent enough, your doctor may prescribe medications that help your body use insulin more effectively.
Monitoring your blood sugar is an essential part of type 2 diabetes management too. Its the only way to know if youre meeting your target levels.
Your doctor may recommend testing your blood sugar occasionally or more frequently. If your blood sugar levels are high, your doctor may recommend insulin injections.
Also Check: How Many Points Does Metformin Lower Blood Sugar
Whats The Difference Between Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that impacts 1.25 million American children and adults. For type 1, the immune system destroys the cells that release insulin, eventually leading to the complete inability to produce insulin in the body. Type 1 generally manifests at a young age and lasts a lifetime.
Type 2 diabetes has multiple contributing factors including genetics and lifestyle factors such as obesity and inactivity. The disease generally arises during adulthood and oftentimes can be reversed or controlled through diet and exercise. 90-95% of those diagnosed with diabetes have type 2.
What Is Insulin Resistance
Some pregnant women with diabetes become insulin resistant. This means your body makes insulin but doesnt use it well. During pregnancy, the placenta grows in your uterus and supplies food and oxygen to your baby through the umbilical cord. The placenta also makes hormones that help your baby develop. But these hormones can make you insulin resistant. You may need more and more insulin the longer youre pregnantup to 3 times as much as you needed before pregnancy. Youre most resistant to insulin in your third trimester.
Read Also: Child Blood Sugar Levels Chart
What Is Preexisting Diabetes
Diabetes is a condition in which your body has too much sugar in the blood . Preexisting diabetes means you have diabetes before you get pregnant. This is different from gestational diabetes, which is a kind of diabetes that some women get during pregnancy. Women with diabetes can and do have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies. But untreated diabetes can cause complications for both moms and babies.
In the United States, about 1 to 2 percent of pregnant women have preexisting diabetes. The number of women with diabetes during pregnancy has increased in recent years.
When you eat, your body breaks down sugar and starches from food into glucose to use for energy. Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin that helps your body keep the right amount of glucose in your blood. When you have diabetes, your body doesnt make enough insulin or cant use insulin well, so you end up with too much sugar in your blood. This can cause serious health problems, like heart disease, kidney failure and blindness. High blood sugar can be harmful to your baby during the first few weeks of pregnancy when his brain, heart, kidneys and lungs begin to form. Treatment for diabetes can help prevent problems like these.
There are two types of preexisting diabetes. Managing them before and during pregnancy can help reduce your risk of complications:
Is Diabetes Inherited From Mother Or Father
Diabetes is a hereditary disease, which means that the child is at high risk of developing diabetes compared to the general population at the given age. Diabetes can be inherited from either mother or father.
The childs risk increases:
- If the father has type 1 diabetes, the risk of the child developing diabetes is 1 in 17.
- If the mother has type 1 diabetes and:
- The child was born before she is 25 years old, then the risk is 1 in 25.
- The child was born after she is 25 years old, the childs risk is 1 in 100.
Even if diabetes run in families, it is possible to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes in children or youth by following a healthy lifestyle.
- If the father has type 2 diabetes, the risk factor is about 30%.
- If the mother has type 2 diabetes, the risk factor is slightly higher.
- If both parents have diabetes, the risk factor increases to about 70%.
Genes associated with type 2 diabetes risk include:
- History of gestational diabetes
You May Like: How To Keep Blood Sugar From Dropping
What Are Hypoglycemia And Hyperglycemia
Hypoglycemia is low blood sugar and hyperglycemia is high blood sugar. Both of these conditions are common if you have preexisting diabetes. If you have signs or symptoms of either condition, tell your provider. Signs of a condition are things someone else can see or know about you, like you have a rash or youre coughing. Symptoms are things you feel yourself that others cant see, like having a sore throat or feeling dizzy.
If you have preexisting diabetes, youre more likely to have low blood sugar during pregnancy. This can happen if you dont eat enough or often enough, if you get too much physical activity or if you take too much insulin. Its usually mild and easily treated by eating or drinking something. But if its not treated, it can cause you to pass out. Signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia include:
- Being hungry
- Feeling weak, dizzy, shaky, confused, anxious or cranky
- Looking pale
Is Type 2 Diabetes Increasing
Type 2 diabetes is increasing at an epidemic rate, and is being diagnosed at younger and younger ages. The most likely reason for this increase is that individuals with a genetic susceptibility to type 2 diabetes are developing the disease due to lifestyle changes namely less physical activity, weight gain, and longer life span.
The good news is that scientific research confirms that by eating healthy foods, exercising regularly and maintaining an ideal body weight, you can delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes.
Recommended Reading: Does Low Blood Sugar Cause High Blood Pressure
What Is An Infant Of A Mother With Diabetes
An infant of a mother with diabetes is a baby who is born to a mother with diabetes. Because the mother has diabetes, the baby is at risk for problems.
People with diabetes have high levels of sugar in their blood . Over time, this can lead to serious health problems. Keeping your blood sugar under control lowers your risk for complications. You can manage diabetes by eating a nutritious diet, getting regular exercise, and taking medicine.
Two types of diabetes can happen in pregnancy. These are:
Gestational diabetes. In this condition, you dont have diabetes before pregnancy. You develop it during pregnancy. This type of diabetes goes away after your baby is born.
Pre-gestational diabetes. In this condition, you have diabetes before getting pregnant. You may have type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
People with type 1 diabetes dont make insulin. Your body needs insulin to use blood sugar. Youll need to take insulin shots.
People with type 2 diabetes cant use the insulin they make. Or their bodies dont make enough insulin. Youll need blood sugar-lowering medicine and possibly insulin.
Its important to manage your blood sugar during pregnancy. This can lower your babys risk for problems.
More Information On Genetics
If you would like to learn more about the genetics of all forms of diabetes, the National Institutes of Health has published The Genetic Landscape of Diabetes. This free online book provides an overview of the current knowledge about the genetics of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, as well other less common forms of diabetes. The book is written for health care professionals and for people with diabetes interested in learning more about the disease.
Also Check: How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have In One Day
Aim And Objectives Of The Workshop
The Consensus Workshop on âType 2 Diabetes in the Young: The Evolving Epidemicâ was convened by the International Diabetes Federation in response to the many reports of the occurrence of type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents. The objective of this document is to review the current information on type 2 diabetes in youth and to reach a consensus on what actions need to be taken to slow or reverse this trend. The topic has become a clinical, research, and health economic priority, with important implications for the health status of future generations throughout the world.
The workshop sought to:
Assess current information on type 2 diabetes in the pediatric population in terms of epidemiology and public health implications
Review the classification and diagnosis of type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents
Discuss the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes in youth
Evaluate screening recommendations
Assess the burden of complications
Make recommendations on therapeutic options
Assess the opportunities for prevention in order to reach a consensus on what actions need to be taken to slow or reverse the epidemic.
Inadequate Data At Present
The available information on type 2 diabetes incidence and prevalence in childhood and adolescence is sparse compared with that for adults. Most surveys are clinic based or case series, with a paucity of population-based surveys, particularly outside North America and Japan . Information on the natural history and etiology of type 2 diabetes in the pediatric age range is also sparse. There is also a lack of uniformity in case definition , data collection, and follow-up .
The studies in the literature may be divided into population- and clinic-based studies.
Recommended Reading: How Long Do Type 1 Diabetics Live
Monitoring Your Own Blood Glucose
If you have type 2 diabetes, as well as having your blood glucose level checked by a healthcare professional every two to six months, you may be advised to monitor your own blood glucose levels at home.
Even if you have a healthy diet and are taking tablets or using insulin therapy, exercise, illness and stress can affect your blood glucose levels.
Other factors that may affect your blood glucose levels include drinking alcohol, taking other medicines and, for women, hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle.
A blood glucose meter is a small device that measures the concentration of glucose in your blood. It can be useful for detecting high blood glucose or low blood glucose .
If blood glucose monitoring is recommended, you should be trained in how to use a blood glucose meter and what you should do if the reading is too high or too low.
Blood glucose meters aren’t currently available for free on the NHS but, in some cases, blood monitoring strips may be. Ask a member of your diabetes care team if you’re unsure.
Read about diabetic eye screening.