Having gestational diabetes means you may be at risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life

Diabetes during pregnancy is called gestational diabetes and it affects about 10% of pregnant women.

But did you know that having gestational diabetes means you probably have the genes that make you more at risk of getting type 2 diabetes later in life?

Having gestational diabetes means you may be at risk of developing #type2 #diabetes later in life. Click To Tweet

What happens with gestational diabetes?

During pregnancy, the mother’s body produces hormones to help the baby grow and develop. These hormones also block the action of the mother’s insulin, which helps the body to process sugar (glucose).

Because of this, the mother’s body needs two to three times its normal amount of insulin.

For some mums, the extra demand for insulin production won’t be met and their blood sugar levels will be higher signalling gestational diabetes.

When the pregnancy is over and blood sugar levels return to normal, the diabetes usually disappears. However, for two out of every 100 women the diabetes continues.

 

What are the symptoms of diabetes after pregnancy?

The HbA1c (or glycated haemoglobin) test measures your average blood sugar levels over the previous two to three months.

If your HbA1c level is raised, it may indicate the early signs of diabetes – known as pre-diabetes. This means you’re at high risk of developing diabetes soon.

If your test results suggest pre-diabetes you should speak to your doctor about changes you can make to diet and exercise to bring your blood sugar levels back to a healthy range.

Research has shown that women with pre-diabetes who achieve their healthy weight and become more active can delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes. Additionally, if you have pre-diabetes, your doctor is likely to recommend a diabetes test at least every 12 months.

If the test shows you don’t have diabetes, that’s great news. But remember it’s important to continue taking a diabetes test at least every two years as you are at higher risk of developing diabetes.

In fact, women who have had gestational diabetes have a 50% risk of developing type 2 diabetes at some stage in their lives.

Women who’ve had gestational diabetes have a 50% risk of developing #type2 #diabetes later in life Click To Tweet

Although the MyHealthTest Diabetes (HbA1c) Test Service is not suitable for use during pregnancy, if you’ve had gestational diabetes in the past and want a convenient way to test your diabetes risk – this easy and convenient fingerprick test may be for you.

For our fingerprick blood test, we only need a few spots of blood placed onto a special collection card that you mail back to our Australian pathology lab.

We send the results directly to you through a secure website and you can share and discuss these results with your doctor.

So, if you’re worried you’re at risk of developing diabetes after pregnancy there’s an easy way to find out.

And, if you’re planning another pregnancy, it’s best to speak to your doctor for advice on how to keep you and your baby as healthy as possible.

at-home diabetes HbA1c test

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