Ways to Manage Gestational and Child Diabetes

December 02, 2019

Diabetes is at an all-time high and the annual prevalence is rising globally. It is a chronic disease that is affecting the aged, youngsters, pregnant mothers and children with almost same the intensity. Talking about the burgeoning risk of child diabetes and gestational diabetes, it is at a peak today. Diabetes may step into the life of a child at any age. The child may receive it from a pregnant diabetic mother or due to physiological reasons.

Similarly, it is quite common for a pregnant mother to acquire gestational diabetes and that accounts for extra care. It usually introduces several health risks and makes the journey of pregnancy more cumbersome.

There are several types of diabetes affecting men and women, but the most common are type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Until recently, children and teens were vulnerable to acquire type-1 diabetes, also called juvenile diabetes. But they may have the disposition to acquire type 2 diabetes if they are overweight or have a family history of diabetes.

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What are type 1-diabetes and gestational diabetes?

 

Type 1-Diabetes is a condition when the blood glucose level is too high such that the body is reluctant to produce a hormone called insulin. Insulin plays a critical role in allowing glucose to enter the cells and fuels the body.

Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy and sometimes ceases to exist after giving birth. It leads to a higher blood sugar level and is most likely to arise in the second or third trimester of the pregnancy.

It is somehow not possible to prevent diabetes entirely but ensuing healthy habits can help have an easy sail through with the prevailing condition. Let us find some measures to manage diabetes existing in children and mothers:

Can gestational diabetes harm the baby?

If they make an effort to keep their blood sugar in control, in most cases, the diabetic mother gives birth to a healthy baby. The baby remains heathy as the basic development takes place in the first trimester and gestational diabetes shows up only halfway through the pregnancy. Even after acquiring gestational diabetes, women can expect to deliver naturally. However, this can happen only if diabetes is managed properly.

This is how:

  • First and foremost, once it is diagnosed, talk to your health care provider about any CONCERNS related to labor and delivery.
  • Understand your blood sugar level and make a conscious effort to keep it under control. The blood sugar level may vary every day based on the foods you consume. Keep a track of the intake and know how your body responds.
  • Eat healthy and as prescribed by the health care provider. Women with gestational diabetes come under special dietary needs and it should be met, no matter what. A healthy and balanced diet comprising of foods from all the food groups will enrich the body with nutrients, vitamins and minerals.
  • Get going with regular, moderate physical activity and exercise. Women with gestational diabetes need to stay active and should pursue special physical activities such as walking, prenatal aerobics, or even swimming as these tend to control blood sugar levels. Also, any course of physical activity must be continued under the guidance or advice of your health care professional.
  • A healthy weight gain in pregnancy is important to birth a healthy child. But with gestational diabetes, it should be double watched under the supervision of your doctor. Aim to keep a weekly track record of weight gain and report any weight loss.
  • Maintain a record book for tracking daily activity, consuming healthy foods and blood sugar numbers. In the beginning, it seems like a lot to do, but remember vigilance will only decrease complications in the long run.
  • Take insulin and medicines as prescribed by the doctor. The cure should not be compromised at any given stage. For gestational diabetic mothers, they need to infuse a small amount of insulin in their plan. The consumption of insulin shots will be well instructed by the provider.

Expectant mothers must take immense care and be cautious pertaining to any signs of prolonged diabetes for themselves and at a later stage for their baby.

For children, the management of diabetes comes with its own set of struggles and unparalleled care. At first, it is daunting and unfortunate for any child to acquire Diabetes. But being the primary caregiver, everything falls on the shoulders of the parents. They have to ensure and be sensitive towards the child and help in accepting the condition. It is a challenging journey, with endless concerns and extra care. Although there is no cure for diabetes, it is achievable to live a completely normal life with it.

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Ways to manage a healthy life for children dealing with diabetes

 

Control diabetes to avoid complications and other health issues. A responsible caregiver and parents need to be considerate and provide for the needs of the diabetic child.

Routine blood sugar monitoring by the parents and educating the child to make the process easier for them to follow through.

Insulin therapy and multiple insulin injections must be given to the child every day under the supervision of the parents.

Introduce the child to a healthy diet under the direction of the health care provider. For diabetic children, maintaining blood sugars within a normal range is most impacted and related to the food and medicines that they consume.

Apart from dietary changes, diabetic children should be introduced to at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day. Again, the type and level of physical activity are best exemplified by the medical professional.

Owing to the impact of diabetes in a childs life, any parents concerns will be endless. But with patience, it can be dealt with effortlessly and the child can live a completely normal life and beyond hospital walls with basic measures of care and discipline.

With Inputs from

Dr. Vighnesh Y, M.D (Internal Medicine)
Consultant Physician, CallHealth

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