type 1 diabetes in pregnancyThis guest post is written by Kelley Ward, PhD., RN, C.

I know–you’ve been biting your nails waiting for part 2 of this discussion, haven’t you? Well, for the health of you and your baby I’m so glad you’ve come back to learn the rest of what matters when it comes to balancing diabetes and carrying a healthy baby to term. Here are our last four key points to remember:

6. Normal blood sugar levels. To have a normal pregnancy it is important that your blood sugar levels mirror blood sugar levels found in pregnant women without type 1 diabetes. This means your fasting blood sugar levels should be < 95 mg/dl and your postprandial, or blood sugar levels one to two hours after a meal, should be 100-129 mg/dl.

7. Special tests. There are several special tests you will need during pregnancy. Prior to pregnancy and throughout your pregnancy, you will need eye exams because pregnancy can worsen diabetic retinopathy. Your blood pressure and kidney function will also need to be closely monitored to prevent potential problems. In addition, your OB will order ultrasounds to determine your baby’s growth and monitor your baby’s organ development.

8. Growth. Many babies of diabetic women are bigger for their age than other babies. Having a large baby can put you and your baby at risk for birth injuries. In addition, large babies sometimes have low blood sugars after birth. On the other hand, some women with type 1 diabetes have smaller than average babies, which may put the baby at risk for slow growth and development.

9. Birth. Depending on the situation, your baby may be delivered naturally or by c-section. Overall, if you have a normal A1C and maintain as close to normal blood sugars as you can throughout your pregnancy there is a good chance that you will have a healthy pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby.

Before you consider getting pregnant, it is important that you contact an OB experienced in managing pregnancies complicated by type 1 diabetes. The best way to ensure a healthy pregnancy is to get your blood sugar levels as close to normal as you can before you become pregnant. If you are considering starting a family and want to learn more about how you can have a healthy pregnancy with type 1 diabetes Dr. Hessel is here to help guide you. Call us today and set up an appointment if you are pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant. We are always here to answer your questions.