Diabetes is a common life-long health condition. There are 2.8 million people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK and an estimated 850,000 people who have the condition but don’t know it.
Diabetes is a condition where the amount of glucose in your blood is too high because the body cannot use it properly. This is because the pancreas does not produce any insulin, or not enough, to help glucose enter your body’s cells – or the insulin that is produced does not work properly (known as insulin resistance). Insulin is the hormone produced by the pancreas that allows glucose to enter the body’s cells, where it is used as fuel for energy so we can work, play and generally live our lives. It is vital for life.
Glucose comes from digesting carbohydrate and is also produced by the liver. Carbohydrate comes from many different kinds of foods and drink, including starchy foods such as bread, potatoes, rice, pasta and chapatis; fruit; some dairy products; sugar and other sweet foods.
If you have diabetes, your body cannot make proper use of this glucose so it builds up in the blood and isn’t able to be used as fuel.
During your Pregnancy, Darent Valley Hospital can offer and provide great care for you and your baby and depending on which type of Diabetes you have will determine the Care Pathway we choose for you and tailor it towards your individual needs.
If you have diabetes and you are considering starting a family, we offer a pre conceptual service in the Diabetes Centre and would love to see you in order to get good glycaemic control before you discover you are pregnant. All you need to do is discuss with your GP your plans for a future family and ask him/her to refer you to the pre-conceptual clinic at Darent Valley Hospital. It is important to have good glycaemic control prior to becoming pregnant to ensure a healthy baby and pregnancy.