One of the signs of gestational diabetes is noticing high glucose levels in urine during pregnancy. In this article we will discuss this pregnancy complication and how to control it…
During pregnancy, most of the women suffer from gestational diabetes. This is one of the types of diabetes which may occur during the second term of pregnancy and may continue till childbirth. The first signs can be seen during the 24th to 28th week of pregnancy. High glucose levels during pregnancy can be seen as an onset of gestational diabetes. An increase in sugar levels in the bloodstream can lead to hyperglycemia and it can be detected with the help of a blood test.
Though the exact reason for the occurrence of gestational diabetes is not yet known, doctors say the abnormal levels of glucose in the body can be harmful both to the mother and child. The food is digested and broken down into smaller molecules for easy assimilation. Glucose is also produced in the similar manner, which gets into the bloodstream. Insulin produced by the pancreas helps in the digestion of glucose molecules.
When a woman is pregnant, the placenta that attaches the fetus to the blood supply produces hormones that may impair the function of insulin. This can lead to high sugar levels in urine during pregnancy, resulting in gestational diabetes. The development of the fetus may affect the glucose levels in blood, owing to this fact. This can prove to be harmful to the fetus, as an increased level of sugar in the mother’s blood can be passed to the embryo through the placenta.
To control this, the baby’s placenta performs extra functions to regulate glucose in its body. There are several risks associated with high glucose levels during pregnancy, especially for the fetus. Babies of such mothers may have some difficulties like being born with a larger head (hydrocephalus), trouble in breathing. These babies also have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, in later stages.
Identifying High Glucose Levels
According to a study, it has been shown that children are also at a risk of developing diabetes. Babies exposed to increased levels of blood glucose are found to have a lower sensitivity to insulin and even develop a condition where insulin secretion is above than normal. It is essential to take note of the signs if you doubt that your blood glucose may have increased. Initially there are no signs or symptoms of this abnormal condition, but as the condition progresses, it can exhibit some symptoms like the ones mentioned below.
- Excessive thirst and hunger
- Frequent urination
- Severe headaches, with increased frequency
- Generalized body weakness
- Changes in vision
- Unable to think and focus clearly
- Craving for nonfood items
Treating High Glucose Levels During Pregnancy
As mentioned earlier, delaying treatment can lead to the risk of contracting type 2 diabetes. Consulting a gynecologist regarding this issue will always prove to be helpful in controlling this condition. A routine glucose test during pregnancy, especially during every term can prevent the occurrence of unwanted complications. The health care provider may conduct a few tests like blood tests, glucose tolerance tests and physical exam to analyze the exact condition.
If the tests confirm that you have high levels of glucose, the doctor may recommend a few modifications in the diet and lifestyle. A healthy diet that consist of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains is usually recommended. This will help in controlling blood sugar levels. Processed foods, foods containing refined carbohydrates, should be off limits if you want to avoid any unwanted complication. A routine exercise regimen and strict diet restrictions, after consulting an obstetrician or gynecologist will also promote health and reduce the risk of contracting type 2 diabetes.
Since high glucose levels in urine during pregnancy can be risky in nature, and at times lead to type 2 diabetes, consulting a gynecologist to maintain normal glucose levels during pregnancy is advisable. This also helps avoid other complications and helps you sail through pregnancy safely.