Sweet Success When It Comes to Managing Gestational Diabetes

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Thanks to the support from the Mary & Dick Allen Diabetes Center at Hoag, Christine Wynne looks back on her pregnancy fondly, even though she encountered some unexpected bumps along the way.

Christine’s pregnancy started out very easy. Meeting every health benchmark on the list, she was able to maintain her active lifestyle and eat a healthy diet.

That changed in her late-second trimester, when she underwent routine screenings and was diagnosed with gestational diabetes mellitus, or GDM.

“I couldn’t believe it. I thought I had been doing everything right and was on-track for the amount of weight I was gaining during the first few months of my pregnancy,” Christine said. “Being diagnosed with gestational diabetes was shocking and overwhelming.”

Her doctor reassured her that she was in the best hands and that there were numerous resources available to her through the Mary & Dick Allen Diabetes Center at Hoag that would help her understand this new diagnosis.

Christine was enrolled in the Allen Diabetes Center’s Sweet Success program, which is tailored for women who have diabetes while pregnant.

Through the Sweet Success program, certified diabetes educators offer classes and information for pregnant women with diabetes through a robust education plan that includes: self-monitoring blood sugar, carbohydrate counting, breastfeeding techniques, preparing for birth and other topics.

Between classes, Christine regularly met with a certified diabetes educator to keep her blood glucose levels within the recommended range and to make sure her questions were answered.

“It was eye-opening to learn that my ‘healthy’ diet wasn’t providing the best nutrients for my body and my baby,” said Christine. “They worked with me to create a meal plan and control my portion size. I left every meeting feeling confident and knowledgeable that I could manage my GDM.”

After giving birth, Christine had a final consultation to evaluate her diabetes post-pregnancy. Nervous to take her newborn out for the first time, the Allen Diabetes Center went above and beyond to make her experience a great one.

“They knew it was a stressful situation for a new mom to get out of the house for the first time and made it so easy for me when I arrived,” Christine shared.

The nurses walked her through the steps of testing for Type 2 Diabetes post-baby (referred to as the oral glucose tolerance test) and told her that regardless of the outcome she should be proud of her newest bundle of joy and that Hoag would be here to help.During the test, the nurses even held her baby to help keep her calm.

Through the entire process, Christine felt reassured that her care team had her and her baby’s best interests in mind.

“I attribute my healthy pregnancy, delivery and baby to the incredible team at Hoag. From the physicians and nurses, to the front desk receptionists, my experience was a positive one because of them,” said Christine. “I’m proud to say I no longer have diabetes, but I feel blessed to have been in such great hands. I hope my story will help anyone else who is going through this.”