I have three boys, and not once did I have gestational diabetes with them. However when I got pregnant with my girl I did. I could not understand how I could have gotten it. Only a few months before I found out I had gestational diabetes my oldest son got type 1 diabetes. We had changed our diet and I had been eating the best I ever have! So how could I have gestational diabetes?
First of all what is gestational diabetes? It is a form of high blood sugar that effects only pregnant woman. And what causes it… NOT YOU!!! That is the first thing I have to tell you. This is not your fault. You did nothing to cause this and there is noting you could have done to prevent it. It took me a few days and lots of crying to accept that this was not my fault and it is ok. But how do they test it see if you have gestational diabetes, and are there any signs or symptoms?
Yes there is a test that they do at about 28 weeks, sometimes sooner. It is this really nasty drink that you have to drink and then they draw your blood. For the most part it is painless. If you fail that test (the one hour test) then they make you do the three hour test. That one for me is always hard. You have to drink the whole bottle and then get blood taken 4 times. Once before you drink to see what your fasting blood sugar level is. Then one every hour for the next three hours. If you get sick and throw it up, you have to start over again another day.
Need lest to say I failed the one hour test and had to do the three hour one. I knew I was going to fail the three hour one, because at the 1 almost 2 hour mark I was getting really sick. It was so bad I was laying on the floor at the lab trying not to throw it up!
Once they told me I failed, like I said I was so mad at myself. How could this happen. I started to think back on the symptoms. I would get tired an hour or two after I ate, I would feel really angry at times, and I was thirsty all the time. After they called told, I had to make an appointment with OBX. They stepped me though what gestational diabetes and what I needed to do now.
I had to poke my finger! I hate needles. But I knew I had to do what I had to do for a healthy pregnancy. I had to check my blood sugar first thing when I got up in the morning to see what my fasting number where. Then an hour after I ate my main meals. The first week or two it was a lot of work. But I learn what I could and could not eat that would spike my blood sugar. Now some people have to check their blood sugars two hours after eating some, like me had to check an hour after first bite of food. I had to make sure my blood sugar was anywhere from 80-140. If it was under I needed to eat something fast to bring it up. If it was to high I had to do three things, one rethink about what I ate, two drink water, and three go for a walk. The walking and water would help to bring the sugars down.
After about a month of being diet controlled I had to get on medication. I could not get my number under 140 at lunch or dinner, and I was hungry all the time now. I had felt like I failed again, now I need medication. They put me on Glyburide (you would also get on insulin) 2.5mg in the morning right before I ate. Oh boy the first day was ruff. Because my son has type 1 I knew the signs of a low, and I felt my low coming on fast. So I checked my blood sugar right when I was getting shaky, and sweaty, and pale. I was 60! Again you don’t want to be under 80 or you are low. So I can to my “stash” for my son when he as a low and eat more then 15 carbs work. You should only do what they call the 15 in 15. That is 15 carbs to bring your blood sugar up and then wait 15 minutes to see if you needed more carbs.
Needed less to say that whole day I was low and got to eat sweets all day without feeling bad about it. The next day I took talk the medication (1.25) and it made a world of a difference. I was able to eat again and feel full! However I had another problem that I am going to tell you more about in my next post…. a small baby! Right I know what you are thinking… you (I) had gestational diabetes how could I have a small baby? Most women with gestational diabetes have big babies. Well wait a few more days and I will tell you all about that.
Thank you all for reading. If you have any questions about gestational diabetes feel free to ask me. There are also some great facebook groups that really helped me out. Just remember that at the end of the day you did not fail, this was not fault and you can do this.