When women become pregnant, their body undergoes many hormonal changes. For instance, pregnant women have higher blood sugar levels, which their bodies regulate by increasing insulin. However, sometimes, the body does not produce sufficient insulin, and the blood sugar levels cannot be regulated. This results in diabetes during pregnancy or gestational diabetes, which can even affect women with no prior history of diabetes.What is the diabetes effect on baby during pregnancy? It can be extremely harmful for the baby if not controlled. The baby could even be still born. The prognosis is much better now, with most babies surviving and flourishing, but even with controls, there are significant health risks.
Diabetes in the expectant mother usually shows up after 24 weeks, until then the mother may have normal or slightly elevated sugar levels. Tests are conducted to determine if the mother has diabetes in pregnancy. Luckily, it also disappears as soon as she has had the baby, though she is at risk for type 2 diabetes later on. During the pregnancy, it is recommended that she regulates her diet, and keeps herself fit.Here are some effects of diabetes on baby during pregnancy.
Effects of diabetes on baby during pregnancy are:
1.Health risks: The diabetes effect on baby during pregnancy in the early weeks can be quite harmful. It can affect the baby’s organ development inside the uterus and result in an enlarged heart. However, diabetes in pregnancy usually happens during the second trimester, by which time such developmental issues won’t occur.
2.Increased birth weight: The major diabetes effect on baby during pregnancy is a condition called macrosomia which can cause the baby to gain weight in uterus very rapidly. Week on week, the baby gains weight and this makes the birth that much harder. Natural births are risky for both the mother and the child at this point.
3.Early birth: Because of the rapid growth of the baby born to a mother with diabetes in pregnancy, it is recommended that these babies are not carried full term. The babies are usually induced or delivered at around two weeks early. The medical practitioner will closely monitor the baby and the mother before birth to decide on the right time to have the baby delivered.
4.Cesarean delivery: Babies born to mothers with gestational diabetes are larger. Therefore, a normal birth might place stress on the mother and result in excessive bleeding and tearing. It also could cause trauma to the baby as it is being born. One such dangerous condition is shoulder dystocia where the baby’s shoulders could get stuck even after the head has been delivered.
5.Low blood sugar at birth: This is another worrying diabetes effect on baby during pregnancy. Because of the efforts to control blood sugar levels before birth, the baby’s blood sugar may fall drastically causing complications, even brain damage. Usually, mothers are recommended to begin feeding immediately. Otherwise, the baby is given glucose intravenously. Even if the baby shows no symptoms, it is best to test.
6.Other related health issues: In some serious cases, the newborn could have respiratory distress, very low levels of critical minerals such as calcium and magnesium, and newborn jaundice. However, with careful monitoring, the diabetes effect on baby during pregnancy or after, can all be stabilised and cured. Usually, mineral supplements are prescribed.
These are the effects of diabetes on baby during pregnancy period.