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NDEP Urges Women with a History of Gestational Diabetes to Take Action to Prevent Diabetes
The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), a joint program of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has partnered with the NIH Office of Research on Women's Health to expand and enhance a gestational diabetes awareness initiative called "It's Never Too Early to Prevent Diabetes: A Lifetime of Small Steps for a Healthy Family." The initiative aims to help women with a history of gestational diabetes and their families learn about the future health risks associated with gestational diabetes and take steps to reduce risks.The primary goals of this campaign are to
- decrease the incidence of diabetes among women with a history of gestational diabetes
- increase awareness of the future risks for obesity and type 2 diabetes among children born from pregnancies affected by gestational diabetes
- expand outreach to health care professionals who are counseling women about future health risks and the importance of adopting and maintaining healthy behaviors in families affected by gestational diabetes
Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy and affects about 7 percent of all U.S. pregnancies—about 200,000 pregnancies each year. Women with a history of gestational diabetes have a 40 to 60 percent chance of developing diabetes in the 5 to 10 years after delivery. Additionally, children born to mothers who had gestational diabetes are also at increased risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes as they grow up. Women who have had gestational diabetes should be tested for diabetes 6 to 12 weeks after their baby is born and at least every 3 years after that.
NDEP materials include information to help women with a history of gestational diabetes—and their whole family—take steps to lower their risk for developing diabetes. Visit www.ndep.nih.gov/am-i-at-risk/gdm or see the tip sheet titled It’s Never Too Early to Prevent Diabetes: A Lifetime of Small Steps for a Healthy Family at www.ndep.nih.gov/publications/PublicationDetail.aspx?PubId=93. The tip sheet is also available in Spanish. In addition, the NDEP has free posters, articles, and other resources about preventing type 2 diabetes and managing diabetes to prevent complications. Visit www.yourdiabetesinfo.org or call 1–888–693–NDEP (1–888–693–6337) for more information.
NIH Publication No. 11–4562
Page last updated: December 5, 2011