Managing diabetes

Managing diabetes


To give yourself and your baby the best start you can, it is very important that you review your diabetes care and general health with your healthcare team at least three months before you start trying to get pregnant.


There are specialised services to support women with diabetes both during pregnancy, and when planning pregnancy. Your diabetes health care team can guide you through your pregnancy. Where possible, talk to your team before getting pregnant to ensure proper planning.


You can increase your chances of delivering a healthy baby by keeping your blood glucose levels well-managed before conception and during pregnancy, particularly in the first eight weeks of pregnancy, as this is when the baby's major organs are formed.


Be aware of the possible complications:

  • Persistent high blood glucose levels increase the risk of abnormal development to the baby and complications for you.  Your doctor can measure your longer-term blood glucose levels using the HbA1c test.
  • Hypos can cause miscarriage early in the pregnancy.
  • Have your eyes checked before you fall pregnant, as pregnancy can place extra pressure on the small vessels in your eyes.


Your main goals:

  • Check your blood glucose levels more regularly - discuss this with your health care team
  • Follow diet and exercise guidelines, stop smoking and reduce or stop drinking alcohol
  • Contact your diabetes health care team if you have problems with nausea and vomiting
  • Start taking folic acid prior to conception (or as soon as you find out you are pregnant) and continue taking it throughout the pregnancy
  • Test your urine or blood for ketones
  • Have a glucagon kit and make sure someone in the household or nearby knows how to use it
  • Attend all antenatal clinic appointments

Information on diabetes and pregnancy