Before we start elaborating on “glucometers for gestational diabetes”, let us first understand its meaning and how this type of diabetes is related to pregnancy.
It is an open secret that pregnancy brings about many physical and biological (hormonal) changes. Morning sickness, backache, specific food cravings, and weight gain are some of its side effects. Yet another change remains hidden and only uncovered during a routine examination at the tail end of pregnancy. Diabetes! Certain women develop this illness during their pregnancy. It is only between the 6th and 8th month that the gynaecologist may warn you of this imbalance. Remember, it can affect your and your baby’s health; therefore, having a glucose meter at home can make a big difference in safe childbirth.
You also need to understand that most women with gestational diabetes do not have a history. On the positive side, this form of diabetes goes away after the pregnancy, at least in the majority of the cases. A few women may continue to suffer from this disease, while some may even develop it at a later stage or after their second pregnancy.
Understanding Gestational Diabetes and Its Risks
Gestational diabetes is intriguing, to say the least. It occurs and then vanishes within a constricted timeline. As a pregnant woman, your doctor will probably ask you to share your eating habits and the type of food you eat and, based on these inputs, will suggest a diet plan and complementing exercises. The idea is to keep your weight under check. An increase in weight increases the chances of having gestational diabetes. Moreover, during pregnancy, there is a spike in certain hormones that cause insulin resistance. Therefore, it becomes imperative to maintain a healthy body mass by limiting food intake and exercising regularly.
It is equally important to check your blood sugar levels frequently, sometimes half a dozen times a day. Of course, your doctor will recommend the frequency of these tests. While there are a lot of best glucometers in the market, what you need to do is get a device which is handy, accurate, dependable, and affordable.
The Importance of Blood Sugar Control during Pregnancy
Uncontrolled blood sugar during pregnancy can result in several medical issues, such as stillborn or even a miscarriage. These are some of the inherent risks of pregnancy and childbirth. Unusually high blood sugar levels can also give birth to equally unpleasant problems post-delivery, such as early weight gain by the baby and breathing problems. Preterm birth and miscarriage are some of the other fatal effects of uncontrolled gestational diabetes.
Glucometers for Gestational Diabetes – An Essential Tool
Most women do not consult the doctor when buying a handy/portable blood sugar meter. A quick search for “glucometer digital” is initiated, and the first offering on the list is purchased. This can make the task of monitoring gestational diabetes tricky and tiring. As a pregnant woman, you need to talk to your healthcare professional. Counselling doesn’t just mean medical clarifications. It also means talking and knowing about some of the essential tools, such as a glucometer.
If glycaemic control is important during pregnancy, monitoring the same is equally crucial for safe childbirth and delivering a healthy baby. Make sure you opt for a device that complements your knowledge and medical proficiency. Only a glucometer will help you fight gestational diabetes by alerting you to insulin intake if your sugar levels spiral out of control.
Selecting the Right Glucometer for Gestational Diabetes
As mentioned above, seeking help from your doctor vis-à-vis the “right glucometer” is a good idea. However, before buying, you may also want to check out its design, form factor, and functions. Remember, a glucometer typically consists of a digital device, glucometer lancets, a lancet tool, and test strips. If you fear frequent finger pricks, you should opt for other tools such as CGM.
If you are okay with a traditional device, make sure you are also comfortable with its elements, such as operational buttons, display size, display numbers (reading), and setting up the test strip correctly. If your doctor has asked you to share data, you must either note it down manually or opt for a glucometer with a data-sharing feature (typically through a connected smartphone app).
When and How Often to Test Blood Sugar
The frequency of tests will depend on your medical condition, the intensity of your gestational diabetes, your lifestyle, body weight, and associated factors. The number of tests you should initiate daily will also depend on these metrics. However, it is a good idea to start the day with a fasting “Test” and follow it up before and after every meal. The frequency may increase in pregnant women who are overweight or suffer from additional women-centric medical upheavals. An intuitive and user-friendly glucose monitor can reduce these challenges during pregnancy, which in itself is an overwhelming experience.
Although gestational diabetes is a transitional disease, it can be quite lethal if left untreated or not addressed through diet and exercise. What is extremely important is monitoring blood sugar levels at all times; therefore, having a handy glucometer is not a luxury but a necessity. Frequent and regulated tests will provide real-time status. Based on the resultant data, your doctor will suggest lifestyle tweaks, including diet changes and exercise routines.
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