Home Treatment For Gestational Diabetes
Just like any type of diabetes, gestational diabetes needs more than medicine to get it treated successfully. It needs you, for you are the person who determines the health of your pregnancy.
Your registered dietitian, diabetes educator, your doctor and other members of your healthcare team can teach you about proper care for yourself and your baby so that both of you are protected from any complications that may arise. If you have all the necessary knowledge available on gestational diabetes, there can be no problem during and after your pregnancy. Once you know the effects of exercise and food on your blood glucose levels, you can avoid gestational diabetes complications.
Testing your blood glucose level, regular exercise and changes in the time, amount and types of food you eat are important in gestational diabetes home treatment.
Eating nutritious foods
Changing the type of food you eat, eating at regular times and the quantity consumed at each meal can ensure that your blood glucose level remain in a safe range. After your gestational diabetes diagnosis, a registered dietitian will help you to plan meals suitable for you. You may be required to keep a record of the foods you consume and your weight. Your dietitian will also show you how to carbohydrate counting so that you eat almost the same amount at each meal to reach a certain total at the end of each day.
Gestational Diabetes Symptoms + Treatment – Video Guide
Moderate exercise done regularly throughout the pregnancy improves the sensitivity of your body towards insulin and this helps blood glucose level control. Most of the time, eating the right foods and exercise are sufficient for gestational diabetes treatment. There should be a minimum of two and a half hours of moderate exercise each week. To accomplish this takes only 30 minutes of exercise each day for five days or more a week. You can even do 10 minute sessions so long as you get a total of 2Â½ hours each week.
For pregnant women who have been leading a sedentary life or have no regular exercise before pregnancy, they need to discuss with their doctor before any regular exercise. Suitable exercises for pregnant women are those that do not strain the lower part of the body. So, it is fine to exercise the arm muscles by using a machine known as the arm ergometer; or exercise the leg muscles by using a recumbent bike which has a chair-like seat that is suitable for women who are pregnant. There are also exercise classes especially for women who are pregnant. Walking and swimming are two low-impact exercises which are also suitable.
If it is possible for you to get your blood glucose to remain in the safe range through changes in your eating and exercise, it will not be necessary for you to take any diabetes medication. However, if you need insulin, keep ready with you some sugary food like 4 glucose tablets or some hard candy so that you can use them if you get low blood glucose symptoms such as confusion, blurred vision and sweating during exercise. If you believe your blood glucose level is too low, stop the activity, test your blood glucose level, and consume the sugary foods you have.
Testing your blood glucose
Doing home blood glucose level testing is a necessary part of gestational diabetes treatment. You will need to do blood glucose checking at home at least once every day. It can be tough when you have to check your blood glucose frequently but from such testing, you will know you have no need to worry as your blood glucose level is in the safe range. Find out from your doctor how often you should check your blood glucose.
Other matters in gestational diabetes care:
- Daily insulin injections may be necessary if your blood glucose level cannot be managed through exercising and the way you eat.
- Do not attempt to reduce weight during pregnancy if you were already overweight before the pregnancy. Find out from your doctor the possible weight increase during your pregnancy.
- You may be taught by your doctor to count the number of kicks by your baby. You are required to notify your doctor if there is less than the usual number of kicks from the baby.
- Your blood glucose level can go lower than the safe range if you use insulin for your gestational diabetes. Although women with gestational diabetes seldom experience low blood glucose, you should know its symptoms and be prepared with sugary foods throughout the day.