Will Gestational Diabetes Affect Us After Birth?

Will Gestational Diabetes Affect My Baby?

Your baby will probably be healthy, if you and your doctor manage your blood sugar while you have gestational diabetes.

Right after you give birth, doctors will check your newborn's blood sugar level. If it’s low, she may need to get glucose through an IV until it comes back up to normal.

Gestational diabetes raises the chance that you will have a baby who is larger than normal. It's also linked to  jaundice, in which the skin looks yellowish. Jaundice generally fades quickly with treatment.

Although your child will be more likely than other kids to develop type 2 diabetes later on, a healthy lifestyle (including a good diet and lots of physical activity) can cut that risk.

Will I Get Type 2 Diabetes?

Because you had gestational diabetes, you have a greater chance of developing type 2 diabetes. But it won’t definitely happen, and you can take action to prevent that.

Your blood sugar levels will likely return to normal about 6 weeks after childbirth. (Your doctor will check on that.) If it does, you should get follow-up tests every 3 years.

To lower your risk:

  • Try to keep your weight in a healthy range. Not sure what that is? Ask your doctor.
  • Eat a good diet that includes lots of vegetables, whole grains, fruits, and lean protein.
  • Make exercise a habit.

If you plan to have another baby, keep in mind that you are more likely to get gestational diabetes again. Ask your doctor if there are any lifestyle changes that would help you avoid that.

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson, MD on April 19, 2017

Sources

SOURCES:

American Diabetes Association: "Gestational Diabetes” and “What is Gestational Diabetes?”

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: "Gestational Diabetes: A Guide for Pregnant Women."

American College of Nurse Midwives: "Gestational Diabetes."

National Diabetes Education Program: “Did You Have Gestational Diabetes When You Were Pregnant? What You Need to Know.”

© 2017 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.