High Blood Sugar Tied to Pregnancy Complications

By Ashley | February 10, 2010
Hyperglycemia And Pregnancy

There are a number of complications that may arise during pregnancy and an increase in blood sugar levels is one of them. Blood sugar levels refer to the amount of glucose circulating in the blood stream. A raised level of glucose in the blood stream is known as high blood sugar. During pregnancy, the blood tends to absorb sugar rapidly thus increasing the risk of high blood sugar. Many expectant mothers face some loss of glucose tolerance during pregnancy and the pancreas find it difficult to supply sufficient insulin to keep blood sugar levels under control. Hence, elevated blood sugar levels are not an uncommon occurrence in pregnant women. Even if the levels are not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes, the condition still poses a threat to both, mother and child alike.

Most babies born to women with blood sugar levels that are higher than normal are seen to be larger at birth. In such cases, the weight of the baby was not linked with obesity or age of the expectant mother. These babies are at a higher risk of diabetes and hypertension. They are also prone to obesity and other cardiovascular disorders later in life. It is also observed that many of the babies born to mothers with high blood sugar levels have high insulin levels and low blood sugar which indicate exposure to high glucose levels during the developing stage.

In most cases, an increase in blood sugar levels generally reduces the chances of a normal delivery, thus making a C-section inevitable. If delivered normally, maternal bleeding and injuries are very common due to the large size of these babies, at birth. Women with high blood sugar levels are also known to have excess amniotic fluid. High blood sugar levels also increase the risk of preeclampsia in the expectant mother, a condition that is characterized by high blood pressure and traces of protein in the urine. These women are also known to have an increased chance of delivering prematurely.

Women who are diagnosed with high blood sugar should be very careful about what they eat. Restricting the intake of foods rich in sugar is recommended. Artificial sweeteners should be avoided completely. Smaller meals spread throughout the day are also known to be beneficial. Salads and fruits are an excellent snack. Their high fiber content helps in keeping blood sugar levels within the normal range. Regular non-strenuous exercises also help in controlling blood sugar levels.

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