I thought I had seen it all as a person with diabetes. Going to college, marriage, moves, career changes, you name it. I had soldiered on through them all, my control shifting from tight to loose to somewhere in the middle as the situation changed. I had adapted pretty well, I told myself.
Final weeks of pregnancy! The third trimester brings about many more ultrasound scans and measurements taken to judge the growth and health of your child. You'll likely be visiting your OB/GYN or maternal fetal medicine office twice per week for non-stress tests to ensure that your baby is healthy and active.
By now you're halfway through pregnancy. You've managed to get through the stresses of insulin shock in the first trimester and insulin resistance beginning in the second trimester, and you're well on your way toward your third trimester. Congratulations! A moment of applause, please.
Welcome to the second trimester! By now, many type 1s are experiencing fewer hypoglycemic episodes, and insulin resistance is just beginning to rear its head. You're on the other side of the miscarriage worry hump and getting settled into the pregnancy routine. Congratulations! Take a few minutes each day to celebrate your successes and pat your stomach with a smile, knowing you are doing the best you can to give your growing child everything she needs.
Being your own advocate is imperative for women with diabetes, especially when it comes to gynecologic care. As soon as a young woman is ready to become sexually active, she needs to talk with her doctor about contraceptive options. This conversation should continue through the time when she is ready to stop taking contraceptives and prepare for a family.
It's hard enough to be pregnant, but pregnancy with diabetes is especially challenging because it's so difficult to keep blood sugar within a normal range at a time when hormones are surging. All women try their best with the tools that they have, but even so, about half of all babies born to mothers with type 1 diabetes are overweight or obese at birth because of too much sugar in their mothers' blood. Mothers with high blood glucose levels also increase their child's risk of congenital malformation, stillbirth, neonatal death, preterm delivery, and neonatal admission.
If you have a new infant in your family and a family history of type 1 diabetes, feeding your baby a special formula when weaning off breastfeeding may protect against the development of the antibodies associated with type 1 diabetes, thus potentially shielding your child from developing the disease itself. This is the finding of a new study, conducted by Finnish researchers, that was published in the November 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
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