Gestational diabetes is a fairly rare occurrence where blood sugar levels become raised and/or unstable during pregnancy. It used to be a very scary condition where mothers had to worry about the health of their pregnancies and childbirth became something to fear. Luckily, medicine has advanced so much that gestational diabetes is easily controlled and mothers with this condition can maintain happy and healthy pregnancies.
Gestational diabetes relies mostly on a controlled diet to keep blood glucose levels stable, as well as regular exercise and an overall healthy lifestyle. In very few cases, medication is also needed to regulate blood sugar levels. Keeping track of blood glucose levels is an important part of monitoring gestational diabetes.
Here are some tips for monitoring your blood sugar throughout pregnancy with gestational diabetes:
Be Prepared: Always have your testing supplies with you at all times. You never know when you are going to get stuck at the office, or if a situation comes up where you will need to test your blood sugar. It might be a good idea to have an extra meter and supplies at your office, or keep them in your purse with you in the event that you need them.
Calibrate: While many of the newer models have advanced to not need calibration and are super accurate, you want to make sure your testing monitor is working properly. It wouldn’t hurt to take your monitoring equipment with you to your doctor’s office and test it against theirs. This can help make sure you are getting an accurate reading.
Be Consistent: Depending on your specific case and what is recommended by your physician, you will need to test your blood sugar anywhere from three to six times per day. Set an alarm or timer to remind you to check your blood sugar at these particular times so you are doing so at the same time every day.
Write It Down: Some people only write down their blood sugar measurements when they are abnormal, so they can report it to their doctors. It is really best to write down all of your results every time you test, every day. Keep a running log of your blood sugar results so that if you ever have something abnormal happen, you have documentation of all your previous tests.
Testing Methods: Testing your blood sugar up to six times a day can mean having to prick your fingers as many times in a day, every day. While the prick itself isn’t all that painful, the repeated testing can cause some discomfort. Here are some tips for more comfortable testing methods:
- Always prick the insides of your fingers, not the sides. Not only will testing hurt less, but the pads of your fingers won’t be as sore.
- Wash your hands with warm water before testing, not just to clean and disinfect the testing area, but also to get the blood moving to your fingers. It will be less painful and the blood will come easier.
- Alternate which finger you use regularly. For each testing, use a different finger and then rotate. This will give each prick site more time to heal.
With these tips, testing and monitoring blood sugar throughout pregnancy can become just another easy routine in your day. For more tips on your gestational diabetes check out my other blogs.