Gestational Diabetes

Target Blood Glucose Numbers (mg/dL) Pregnant Women with Diabetes

  • Before meals, at bedtime, and overnight 60 to 99
  • 1 to 2 hours after eating 100 to 129

You can keep track of your blood glucose levels using “My Daily Blood Glucose Record”. Write down the results every time you check your blood glucose. Your blood glucose records can help you and your health care team evaluate whether your diabetes care plan is working.

Low Blood Glucose. When you’re pregnant, you’re at increased risk of having low blood glucose levels, also called hypoglycemia. When blood glucose levels are too low, your body can’t get the energy it needs. Although hypoglycemia can happen suddenly, it is usually mild and can be treated quickly.

Low blood glucose can make you:

  • hungry
  • dizzy or shaky
  • confused
  • pale
  • sweat more
  • weak
  • anxious or cranky
  • have headaches
  • have a fast heartbeat

If untreated cause you to lose consciousness.  You can treat a sudden episode of low blood sugar by eating or drinking something with sugar in it. Some examples of “quick-sugar foods” are fruit juice, soda, milk, raisins, and hard candy (not chocolate). You may also take glucose tablets (available at your pharmacy). This can bring your blood glucose level back to normal pretty quickly.

Low blood glucose can be caused by:

  • meals or snacks that are too small, delayed, or skipped
  • doses of insulin that are too high
  • increased physical activity

Using Glucagon for Severe Hypoglycemia. If you have severe low blood glucose and lose consciousness, you’ll need assistance to bring your blood glucose level back to normal. Your health care team can teach your family members and friends how to give you an injection of glucagon, a hormone that raises blood glucose levels right away. If glucagon is not available, someone should call 911 for emergency treatment.

High Blood Glucose.  High blood glucose can happen when you don’t have enough insulin in your system or when your body isn’t able to use insulin correctly. High blood glucose can result from:

  • Pregnancy
  • not taking your diabetes medicines
  • eating more food or the wrong types of food than usual
  • being less active than usual
  • illness
  • stress

Symptoms of high blood glucose are much more difficult to identify (which is why there are so many undiagnosed people with diabetes) but may include:

  • frequent urination
  • thirst

This is why it is important to monitor your blood sugar levels multiple times each day and to keep track of your reading. Talk with your doctor about what to do when your blood glucose is too high or remains outside of your target range for more than a week. Your doctor might suggest a change in your insulin, meal plan, or physical activity routine.

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