The professionals you will see at your diabetes clinic will depend on the set-up in your local area, but your team may include any of the following:
- a specialist midwife – there may be a diabetes midwife or clinic lead midwife, who will give you specialist support while you are pregnant, during the birth and after the birth. This may be in addition to your regular, community midwife.
- an endocrinologist or diabetologist – a consultant doctor who specialises in diabetes
- an obstetrician – a consultant doctor who specialises in pregnancy and birth
- a diabetes nurse specialist – a nurse specialising in caring for people with diabetes
- a dietician – a healthcare professional who can provide advice on your diet.
These professionals will work alongside the other members of your healthcare team, such as your GP and your community midwife.
Who to contact
Your key point of contact will usually be your diabetes midwife or the diabetes nurse specialist. Make sure you are clear about who to contact, and how to get hold of them. Ideally you should have a direct telephone number or email address. Check what days they work.
"My advice to others would be, don’t be afraid to ask questions of the midwives, the consultants, and all the other people carrying out the tests. Ask them how things can affect you, and try to stay healthy."Gemma, mum of one
As well as the care that you will get from the healthcare team, there are some things that you will need to do for yourself: monitoring your own blood glucose levels, and possibly taking tablets or insulin.
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The emphasis is on trying to keep the birth as normal as possible unless there is a particular reason to do things differently.
Women who are overweight are at higher risk of developing gestational diabetes, although many women who develop it are not overweight at all.
Exercise during pregnancy has a wide range of benefits for you and your baby. If you have gestational diabetes, you have even more reason to exercise: it can help reduce your blood glucose.
If you have gestational diabetes, your diet will become an important part of managing your condition and keeping your pregnancy safe.
Gestational diabetes is treated by making changes to diet and exercise to manage blood sugar levels, and using medication if necessary.
If you have gestational diabetes, measuring your own blood glucose levels will become something you do regularly.
Some women can control their glucose levels through diet and exercise alone but the majority will need to take tablets or injections to help control it.
ℹLast reviewed on March 1st, 2015. Next review date March 1st, 2018.