Terms

Here is a list of words and terms that you might find unfamiliar, that are relevant to my pregnancy and my blog.

  • diabetes

“Diabetes is a condition primarily defined by the level of hyperglycemia giving rise to risk of microvascular damage (retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy). It is associated with reduced life expectancy, significant morbidity due to specific diabetes related microvascular complications, increased risk of macrovascular complications (ischaemic heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease), and diminished quality of life.”
-World Health Organization, Definition and Diagnosis of Diabetes Mellitus and Intermediate Hyperglycemia:
Report of a WHO/IDF Consultation, 2006. (PDF here)

The word “Diabetes” can refer to any one of three specific types of disease where glucose (sugars) build up in the bloodstream because the body either can’t effectively use insulin or it is not making enough.  Insulin acts as a key to receptors in our cells; under normal circumstances the insulin unlocks the “door” and lets the sugars in so the cells have fuel.  When your “keys” don’t work like they should, your body isn’t using it’s normal energy sources and it can cause a host of extra problems.

There are three types of diabetes: type 1 (previously known as juvenile diabetes), where the body isn’t producing insulin; type 2, where the body is producing insufficient insulin (this is the kind I have); and Gestational Diabetes (sometimes called type 3, but mostly in the medical community, rarely by moms with GD) where a previously non-diabetic woman experiences hormonal shifts as a result of pregnancy and her body (and the body of her growing child) creates an insulin resistance in her body.

The word “doula” comes from the ancient Greek meaning “a woman who serves” and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period.

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