The A1C Test
People living with diabetes (that is not the result of pregnancy) have another way to see whether they are meeting their glucose targets: an A1C blood test. The A1C test reflects your average blood glucose levels during the past 3 months. Even though you may only have the opportunity for 1 or 2 A1C tests through your pregnancy it’s another tool in your kit to have a healthy baby. Your doctor can help you set an A1C target that is best for you. Write your target under “My Target Blood Glucose and A1C Numbers.”
If you’re not eating enough or if your blood glucose is too high your body might make ketones. Stored fat is broken down and ketones are made if your diet does not contain enough carbohydrate to supply the body with sugar (glucose) for energy or if your body can’t use blood sugar (glucose) properly. Ketones can pass from you to your baby and are bad for both of you.
Your health care team can teach you how and when to test your urine or blood for ketones. They will also advise you on how to treat ketones.
If ketones build up in your body, you can develop a condition called ketosis. Ketosis can quickly turn into diabetic ketoacidosis, which can be life threatening.
Being Away from Home
If you’re going to be away from home, even if just for an hour or two, you should be prepared for diabetes related problems. Make sure you always have the following with you:
- Emergency contact information including your doctor and insurance information
- A snack: snack pack of crackers or cheese, peanut butter, fruit
- Food or drinks to treat low blood glucose: a juice box, and some form of sugar (hard candy or glucose tablets) to treat low blood glucose
- Your diabetes medicines and supplies
- Your blood glucose meter and supplies
- Your glucagon kit
You may want to consider wearing a Medic Alert ID. Sometimes seconds can make the difference in a life and death situation and you want emergency professionals to know your status.
Gestational diabetes usually goes away after pregnancy, but if it does not go away, it is known as type 2 diabetes. Women who have gestational diabetes have an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life.
If you had gestational diabetes, talk with your doctor about getting your blood sugar checked after delivery and every 1 – 3 years. About half of all women who had gestational diabetes develop type 2 diabetes later.
Pharmacy Times Oct 2005