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Longview – CHRISTUS Good Shepherd is reminding the community that November is National Diabetes Month, a time when communities across the country team up to bring attention to diabetes and its impact on millions of Americans.
“Diabetes is a serious issue for the men, women and children of the Longview and Kilgore areas and across East Texas as a whole,” said Kimberly Page, M.D., CHRISTUS Trinity Clinic Kilgore. “This month is a great opportunity to shed light on this topic each year in a specific way and how important it is to be aware of diabetes of all types in our community, as well as what we can do to fight it.”
This year’s National Diabetes Month is focused on promoting health after gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy. Mothers who have had gestational diabetes need to know that they and their children have an increased lifelong risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
“Up to one in every 10 pregnancies in the United States is affected by gestational diabetes, a type of diabetes found for the first time when a woman is pregnant. This National Diabetes Month join the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases NIDDKD – part of the National Institutes of Health – and communities around the country by promoting health after gestational diabetes,” said Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers, Director of the NIDDK. “By raising awareness that women with a history of gestational diabetes have a lifelong risk for developing type 2 diabetes, we hope to help women take steps to care for their health for years to come.”
Most of the time, gestational diabetes goes away after the baby is born, but physicians warn to be on the lookout in the future: “Even if the diabetes goes away, you have a greater chance of getting diabetes and your child from that pregnancy is at future risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. Page. “In fact, half of all women who had gestational diabetes go on to develop type 2 diabetes.”
If you have had gestational diabetes:
1.      Get tested for type 2 diabetes within 12 weeks after your baby is born. If the test is normal, get tested every 3 years.
2.      Talk to your doctor if you plan to become pregnant again in the future.
3.      Tell your child’s doctor if you had gestational diabetes.
4.      Keep up healthy habits for a lifetime to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.
To find out more information, to begin the testing process or to schedule a time to speak with a health care provider about diabetes, call 903-844-DOCS (3627).