Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes which is seen in pregnant women who have increased blood glucose levels during pregnancy. Studies suggest that the prevalence of gestational diabetes can be as high as 9.2%.Unlike other types of diabetes, gestational diabetes isn’t permanent. Once the baby is born, the blood sugar will return to normal levels most of the times.

Gestational diabetes is seen affecting mothers in the late pregnancy, ie after the baby’s body has been formed. Therefore it does not cause any birth defects, however, may interfere with the normal growth pattern of babies.

Effect on the baby

  • If your blood glucose levels are high your baby will also have high blood glucose.
  • Baby’s pancreas will have to make extra insulin to control high blood glucose.
  • The extra glucose in baby’s blood is stored as fat if untreated or uncontrolled.
  • Baby born larger than normally called macrosomia, which can lead to difficult delivery.
  • Can have breathing problems called respiratory distress syndrome.
  • More likely for baby as it grows to become overweight and develop type 2 diabetes.

Effect on the woman

  • Preeclampsia (high blood pressure, sometimes with fluid retention and proteinuria)
  • Polyhydramnios (excessive accumulation of amniotic fluid )
  • Maternal birth trauma
  • Higher chances for C-Section
  • Developing Type 2 Diabetes
  • Reoccurrence in next pregnancy

Who is at a risk of Developing Gestational Diabetes?

About 5 to 18 percent of all pregnant women are likely to get gestational diabetes during pregnancy. The following factors may predispose you to gestational diabetes:

  • Age of 25 or older
  • Family history of Diabetes
  • Overweight as suggested by the Body mass index
  • Have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Have a medical condition that makes diabetes more likely such as Glucose intolerance
  • Have had Gestational diabetes before
  • Certain ethnic subgroups such as African American, Native American, Hispanic or Pacific Islander

Prevention of Gestational Diabetes

Unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee that you won’t get Gestational diabetes. However, there are some things you may do to reduce the risk of developing it:

  • Eat a balanced diet: chose food high in fiber and low in fat and calories. Focus on eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  • Control on portion sizes
  • Regular exercise: Try and exercise for 30 minutes daily with some moderate form of exercises such as swimming or a brisk walk
  • Lose excess weight before pregnancy: If you are planning a baby, losing a few extra kilos may help you have a healthier pregnancy. Doctors do not recommend losing weight during pregnancy so plan the weight loss before you conceive.

 

 

 

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Breast cancer early detection

Ways to detect Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a form of cancer that develops from the breast tissue. It is mostly found in women, however, can be diagnosed in men too.

Know symptoms and signs of breast cancer include:

  • Nipple discharge or retraction of the nipple
  • Enlargement of one breast, dimpling of the breast surface
  • An “orange peel” texture to the skin
  • Unintentional weight loss and bone pain
  • Enlarged lymph nodes in the armpit
  • Visible veins on the breast.

The risk factors for developing breast cancer include obesity due to a lack of physical exercise, drinking alcohol, hormone replacement, therapy during menopause, early age at first menstruation, having children late or not at all and family history.

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Your questions on Breast Cancer answered

Since what age should women start a breast examination?

Breast cancer is one such cancer that can be cured if detected and treated during initial stages. It is extremely important for women to know what their breasts look and feel like normally so that they are able to differentiate in case of any changes. Breast cancer can happen to women across all age groups, although a majority of the cases of breast cancer occur in women over 40 years of age. However irrespective of the age, women should be aware of their body and its changes. Diagnosing breast cancer in women under 40 years of age is difficult because the breast tissue during that age is much denser than in older women. However self-breast examinations must be done once a month and can be done by women in their 20’s as well. During the teens, women tend to feel lumps in the breast which is quite normal as the breasts are developing and the lumps normally disappear on their own gradually. However, if the lump gets bigger in size or causes pain/discomfort it is better to consult a specialist in order to understand the cause.

A self-breast examination should be done by women whose breasts are fully developed (post-adolescence). Beginning the practice early will help women create a habit out of it and they will become much more familiar with their breasts and can address any changes that the breast undergoes. The self-examination should be done after the days of mensuration as during those days the breasts tend to be swollen. At a younger age, regular examination at frequent intervals is recommended in order to rule out any health condition. Mammograms are not recommended for women below 40 years of age because of the dense breast tissue women have at a younger age, hence mammograms may not be extremely efficient. Women over 40 years of age should screen themselves annually. In case of women who are at higher risk of developing breast cancer; i.e. women who have a family history of breast cancer, women who started menstruating before 12 years of age, women with poor lifestyle habits, women diagnosed with benign breast conditions previously etc. it is recommended to consult a specialist who would be able to advise on the right time to begin mammogram screening.

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Being Aware Of Breast Cancer

Breast Cancer is a growing concern amongst women. Because of its nature, however, the subject is not one that we easily discuss.

What are the symptoms?

  • A lump or thickening in the breast or under the armpit
  • A change in the position of the nipple
  • Changes in the shape or size of the breast or nipple
  • Discharge or bleeding from the nipple
  • Nipple rash
  • Pain in one of the breasts or armpit
  • Puckering or dimpling of the breast skin
  • Pulling in of the nipple
  • Redness of the breast skin

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The impact of excess texting

  1. What is the impact of excess texting given that most of us are tech savvy?

More than being tech-savvy, we have now become tech addicts. Everybody from a working adult to a school going child now has a smartphone and uses it constantly for various purposes like keeping an alarm or reminder, watching videos, listening to music and majorly texting. With increased usage of various texting apps, WhatsApp being the most popular now, most people communicate only through texts. From the time one wakes up until we get to bed, the one thing we have on us constantly and use without a break is our smartphone.

Calling people over the phone used to be the way of communication, although now, communication and keeping in touch is done through texts. Teenagers/children, in particular, are always engaged in their phones, texting their peers, irrespective of the time of the day. Students between the ages of 14-21 prefer to text than call. Addiction to these gadgets is only a small side effect, while there are more other severe consequences of texting continuously. Texting has various psychological, neurological and physical health consequences, it does a lot more to your body than you realize because the ill effects do not present any depictive symptoms.

Texting has its positives and negatives. As much as it helps keep people connected, it is often associated with feelings like anxiety, depression and the fear of being overexposed. Apart from this, excess texting brings with it numerous physical complaints including;

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