Surviving Diabetes and Pregnancy
Surviving Diabetes and Pregnancy
When we found out we were pregnant it was a fantastic day and we were overjoyed to be expecting a much wanted child.
I had Diabetes for 26 years when I discovered I was pregnant so I knew that pregnancy would involve a little bit more than the usual pregnancy experience. What I hadn't realised was the journey I was just about to embark.
From a diabetes perspective, I knew I would have to make sure that my blood sugar levels were tight. But what I hadn't expected was I would have to try and achieve this goal whilst being very nauseous, having no energy and dealing with many of the multitudes of pregnancy ailments (leg cramps, nausea, headaches, back ache) which meant that some days, made getting out of bed possibly a bad idea!
Even though there has been times where challenging would be the best way to describe both my day to day life and diabetes management, there has been many bright spots. Feeling your baby kick for the first time to seeing many ultrasounds where you get to watch your baby grow from near embryo size to a nearly full grown baby are up there with the best.
It's hard work but its achievable if you are dedicated to a happy and healthy outcome - your new baby.
Aim for Great Results to aid even Better Outcomes
Top Tips for surviving Diabetes and Pregnancy
Top Tips for Surviving Diabetes and Pregnancy
- Ensure that you have a great health team, family/friends support network and listen to them
A health care team should include any number of General Practitioner, Endocrinologist, Ophthalmologist, Dietician, Educator and Obstetrician. Diabetes has the ability to impact every part of your body so make sure you have a team that is proactively managing each element. This will mean that you will spend lots of time at doctor and hospital appointments. Lean on your family and friends support network when it all becomes too much.
- Take it a day at a time
My Endocrinologist set very ambitious blood sugar levels for me to try and achieve and at first I was overwhelmed. I also wondered how I was going to achieve these goals with hormones making my blood sugars rise and fall often without warning. Don't look too far forward, take it a day at a time - it seems less overwhelming
- Don't feel guilty about everything you eat, drink, exercise or do..
Having diabetes is tough but add in an unborn baby makes every decision seem like it has gold plated ramifications. Whilst its important to eat healthily, exercise where you can and focus on your BGLs, don't feel guilty if occasionally it all doesn't go to plan. Just correct the issue and re-focus
- Speak to others in the same scenario as you
Internet forums are great, real life friends with diabetes that are pregnant even better. If you cant find either, I referred to Cheryl Akon's - Balancing Pregnancy with Pre-Existing Diabetes. It was great to hear about other women with diabetes that shared my experiences - whether they are good and/or bad
- Use Diabetes Best Practice Tools where you can
I use a Medtronic Pump, CGM and Carelink software. I diligently uploaded every day so that my endocrinologist could review the results and make adjustments to my insulin requirements. Even if you don't have access to these types of tools, use a blood glucose monitor, store your results and either discuss via email or in person with your care team. You learn a lot about your diabetes management through pregnancy which potentially can be utilized after the baby arrives. A Doctor once described it to me as Diabetes Boot-Camp.
- Focus on the end goal
Unlike having diabetes, where you manage everything the best you can just to stay healthy, being pregnancy has a great outcome - a baby. Don't forget about the wonderful gift you will be given once all the hard work is done
This book was my bible
More pics of our baby
For more tales about Diabetes and Pregnancy
- DiabeticMommy - Diabetes Pregnancy, Gestational Diabetes, Trying to Conceive with Diabetes
Site for information and support for gestational diabetes and pregnancy in diabetes. Diabetes birth stories, diabetes and pregnancy articles, support via a forum or discussion and chat.
- Life as a Pregnant Diabetic
This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2013 nicediabetes