You might not know that you have diabetes

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

Common symptoms of pregnancy are similar to symptoms associated to diabetes. When you are pregnant you may not realise that you have diabetes. You can be tested for diabetes at your clinic.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Your clinic might treat you with medicine called insulin. Insulin treatment can be administered either in the form of an injection or a pill. You can control your blood sugar levels by eating healthy food and taking your medication.

Too much sugar in your blood can be harmful to you and your baby

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

If you have diabetes when you are pregnant it might go away after you have your baby, but the diabetes might come back later in life. Therefore, it is important to get your blood sugar levels tested often.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

If you have diabetes, you will need to follow a healthy diet and receive treatment from the clinic to help you control your blood sugar levels.

You might have diabetes before you are pregnant or you might get it during your pregnancy

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

It is important to be healthy before and during pregnancy, so that diabetes does not harm you or your baby.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Eat lots of healthy foods (like fruit, vegetables, lean meat and wholewheat bread). Do not eat too much junk food.

Make sure you do some gentle exercise while you are pregnant.

Ask the sister or doctor at the clinic for help.

If you have pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure in pregnancy), you will need to stay in the hospital so that your blood pressure can be checked often, for you and your baby’s safety

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

There is no treatment for pre-eclampsia. There is some medication available that could help to bring down the mother’s blood pressure and that will not harm the baby. 

Some women feel healthy even if they have high blood pressure. Other women experience symptoms such as: really bad headaches, swelling of the hands, feet and/or face; pain at the top of your stomach; seeing stars/flashing lights

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

If you have pre-eclampsia in your pregnancy, you may still be feeling healthy, despite having a very high blood pressure.  Other women start to experience symptoms such as:

Having high blood pressure in pregnancy can be very serious. It is important that you go to the antenatal clinic regularly during your pregnancy so that your blood pressure can be checked.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

Having high blood pressure in your pregnancy is a serious condition called pre-eclampsia (also known as toxemia). It can make the mother very ill and cause the baby not to grow very well.

Shortness of breath during pregnancy can harm your unborn baby

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

Shortness of breath could mean that you have heart problems. Heart problems during pregnancy can cause the low birth weight of your baby. Low birth weight can cause the poor development of your baby. Low birth weight can also cause early heart disease in your baby.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Seek help from a nurse, health care worker or doctor as soon as possible if you are short of breath.

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