I am 12 and 1/2 weeks pregnant and last week we had our 2nd ultrasound that showed a healthy growing baby! I have been able to control my blood sugars well (I'm on a pump and a CGM) and the pregnancy has been going great so far. I don't know any other diabetics that have gone through a pregnancy and feel a little bit isolated as a lot of things I am going though are very different than my non-diabetic pregnant girlfriends. I would appreciate any advice/words of wisdom on anything related to diabetes and pregnancy and diabetes and delivery. For example, how long can you keep using your abdomen for pump/cgm sites? has anyone had a successful drug free vaginal delivery? would you recommend having a doula (i heard they are great, but i don't know if it's realistic to find one that has had experience with diabetics)?
Hello, I am 13 weeks pregnant with Type 1. I am on a Dexcom and OmniPod and I have similar concerns. I was actually reading the other day that normally in pregnancy women in their first trimester have a tendency towards low blood sugars. I found that very reassuring that even women who do not have diabetes have to deal with the lows at the beginning! My biggest problem so far really has been frequent lows, but I'm not sure if you have had the same experience. I guess coming out of the first trimester and over the next couple weeks type 1's are suppose to start becoming insulin resistant and needing a lot more. I was feeling the same way you were a few weeks ago and reached out to my local JDRF. They set me up with 2 wonderful moms, with Type 1, that have had babies recently. It also lead me to this website which seems like an excellent resource. I am not sure about the doula or vaginal delivery bits but I have the same concern with my pump and CGM. I am already on the thin side, so I dont have a ton of subq to work with. I am thinking of trying my thigh when I change my site and see how that works. I have found that some sites do not absorb the insulin as well and change my readings. Feel free to hit me up anytime!
I'm a type 1 diagnosed this time last year. I'm currently 24 weeks pregnant with my third child, but this is my first pregnancy with type 1. With my other two children I had gestational diabetes. I don't have a lot of experience but the experience I do have I can share with you thus far. :) For starters, I have very good control. My pregnancy has been an easy one mainly because I have great control. My A1C was 4.8 two weeks ago and at conception I was at 5.7.
I'm on a medtronic pump & sensor and boy does it make eating and managing my BS's 100% easier. With two children under 3, I need things to be easy with my health.
My blood sugars were noticeably higher after conception but the key is to notice the change and increase your insulin as your needs fluctuate. Thats what I've done and its worked well. For my first trimester, I dealt with frequent lows, like Olivia pointed out. It was difficult, but towards the beginning of my second trimester i found I needed to increase my insulin slightly, so the lows rarely occur now. I run into a little insulin resistance, not severe by any means though. I also observed I could eat certain carbs in the 1st trimester that metabolized quickly, but my body does not react the same way in the 2nd trimester. So I either have to eat more protein or veggies to compliment or I have to decrease my intake of certain carbs for a meal. As you grow and the baby grows, you will store more fat in your body and this will change how your body metabolizes glucose and insulin.
As for the location of the infusion set and sensor, I found in the 1st trimester (all through) I could literally put it anywhere on my abdomen area. I would say based on size, weight, etc, you need to gauge it, but for me I can no longer put the sensor or infusion set around my belly button, heading South. I've resulted to placing it three fingers measurement from my belly button heading North. That seems to work for now, but at times its painful to inject in certain spots. I've noticed if my skin is really taut in a specific area, stay away from it. You want the fatty, fleshy spots and that gets harder as your belly grows. I was recommended by my trainer to use the upper portion of the butt, where its fleshy and fatty. I think probably in the next month i will use the real estate on my upper butt area. Wow that's so TMI, but you know what I mean. :)
Advice for delivery, with my two previous children I went into labor naturally even though I had gestational diabetes because I fought for it with my doctors in a respectful way. My doctors knew this from the beginning with me and I did research so my docs knew I was knowledgeable. I believe in drug free, natural delivery and that's what I got. I do have a high pain tolerance and with both deliveries I labored for 12 hours. My children and myself benefited from the drug free, natural delivery immensely.
With type 1 now, I am at a high risk clinic and I have given my birth plan to my docs. So they know what I want and how serious and determined I am about my birth plan. I also have a history which helps my case. If you need help with a birth plan I can post an example of a couple to help you get started. There are multiple doctors at the clinic I go to and I think the best advice is to find a specific doctor/s that really supports your birth plan and work with the doctor more and arrange to have him/her for delivery. Another piece of advice, is that the more healthy you are during this pregnancy, that is within your control, then doctors are more willing to help you meet your labor/delivery needs/desires. That's what my doctor told me. Being healthy and controlling BS's reduces the need for interventions if you are looking for a vaginal delivery (drug free or not). I had a doula for my first two deliveries and she didn't do anything differently since I had gestational diabetes. A doula's job is pretty much to help you whether its getting you snacks to treat a BS low or rub your back. Your Type 1 status should not change your doula's job but you need to bring it up with a perspective doula, some may not feel ready to assist someone with "high risk" status. I completely recommend having a doula. Mine so extremely helpful during both my labors. I know I've written a lot so let me know if you have any questions or advice to give me. Best wishes to both of you! :)
I am 32 weeks pregnant. My hemoglobin started being less than 7. I was so worried about it at first and I'm still worried because it's not perfect. In addition, I keep eating all this processed food and even gave in a few times to cravings (but, did take more insulin & monitor my sugar afterward). When I first started the pregnancy, I was much more diligent but, since then I have caved in a little. Especially because I don't feel like the doctors give me the help that I need/want. Some seem irritated when I call & they won't help me adjust my sugar levels over the phone anymore. It also takes them a long time to get back to me after I send them my sugars. In addition, I have gotten into a few arguments with one of them because it's annoying when every time I go in to see the doctor, they seem to say something different regarding how to manage my sugar levels. In my earlier pregnancy days, I had extremely high anxiety & some depression. It has lessened as I've gotten used to being pregnant although, I'm still overly emotional (due to hormones). When I was first diagnosed with this unplanned pregnancy, my endocrinologist made me cry. He made me believe that it would be too hard for me to manage. Since then, I have had a few issues. A membrane tore, leading me to go to the hospital, thinking I was having a miscarriage, I also had a fibroid that caused some pain and the doctors said would cause more pain at some point. The last ultrasound inferred the baby was on the larger side. I will have another ultrasound in a few days to find out what is going on. This may help determine whether I will have C-section or vaginal birth. The doctors are saying that they want me to have a vaginal birth. Ultrasounds aren't 100% accurate. In addition, when my mother was born, she was a big baby and my grandmother didn't have diabetes. I feel like the most important advice I'd give a diabetic who is pregnant or trying to conceive is this: Take what the doctors tell you with a grain of salt. They may do their job inefficiently and scare the crap out of you but, they really aren't the experts they think the are & many don't have good bedside manner. Many kids are born with issues that appear at birth or later in life that doctors try to attribute to things like diabetes but, diabetes isn't always the cause. It's the same thing with depression. People always try to assign reasons for things they don't know the reason for. Many diabetic women give birth to healthy babies even if their sugar levels aren't perfect. I met a woman who was 35 weeks preggo with her second child. She said that when she found out she was pregnant, her hemoglobin levels were 10. Since then, she has gotten them down to 7 (which is worse than mine). She said that her baby was on the small side. I would advise you not to do tons of research on pregnancy and babies over the internet. A lot of it is created by people who don't know what they are talking about. Having a baby is a huge risk. People who have done things perfectly during their pregnancy & seem to be the picture of perfect health sometimes still end up with troubled children. This happens to both diabetics and non-diabetics alike.