JDRF Pregnancy Toolkit

 

A toolkit created by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation which provides information on pregnancy with Type 1 Diabetes.

Pregnancy Toolkit

Diabetes and Pregnancy

 

It is said that the key to a healthy pregnancy in women with Type 1 Diabetes is to have good control over blood sugars, both before becoming pregnant as well as during pregnancy. To best keep blood sugars in a target range (determined with your doctor), check your blood sugars frequently. By keeping your blood sugars in range, it will decrease the amount of excessive sugars being given to the baby. These excessive sugars can lead to the baby growing quickly as if it were being overfed (Macrosomia) or can even do harm to the development of organs. 

There are several risks to be aware of when pregnant with Type 1 Diabetes: 

1) Preeclampsia - Type 1 women are predisposed to preeclampsia as they typically already have higher blood pressure. 
2) Insulin Resistance - due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, insulin resistance and sensitivity may change. 
3) Diabetes Complications - If you become pregnant while already suffering from diabetes complications, these complications may worsen. 
4) Difficulty delivering - This may occur due to the baby's size, depending upon the amount of excess sugar the baby received (which can increase the baby's size).
5) Premature Delivery - also due to the baby's potential size. 
6) Miscarriage - may be a possibility due to potential birth defects caused by excessive sugar in the blood.
7) Birth Defects - may affect the baby when blood sugar levels are not well  controlled or managed during pregnancy. 

It is important to find a doctor and see them regularly as it will be necessary to monitor both you and the baby. A doctor who is well versed with Type 1 Diabetes would be beneficial as they can better address and understand all sides of the situation.