Excess sugar isn’t always sweet. The sweetness of parenthood remains a dream for many couples who are unable to conceive. Diabetes could be one of the reasons depriving couples the joy of parenthood. Many couples are unaware of the fact that diabetes can adversely affect reproductive health. It’s an established fact that diabetes had affected at least 1 in every 10 adults and most of the diabetics have type 2 diabetes, where there is excess sugar than the insulin synthesized in the body. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder affecting all the vital systems of the body. It makes the body vulnerable to infections and other disorders.
How does diabetes occur?
The pancreas of the human body produces a hormone called insulin that metabolises excess sugars or glucose from the body cells. Diabetes or hyperglycemia occurs when there is too much sugar consumption than the insulin produced, or there is reduced production or no production of insulin. This affects the balance of sugar levels in the body.
Depending on the cause, diabetics are divided into:
Type 1 diabetics
- when there is a defect in the pancreas leading to low or abnormal production of insulin.
Type 2 diabetics
- where there are excess glucose levels in the blood than the amount of insulin synthesized to balance it. Gestational diabetes is another form of diabetes that occurs only in pregnant women during the gestational period of 9 months and resolves once the baby is delivered.
How is diabetes related to infertility?
Infertility due to diabetes can occur in both males and females. In females, diabetes interferes with ovulation and can be the cause for PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) caused due to insulin resistance and irregular menstrual cycles. Since PCOS has become one of the most diagnosed reasons for infertility in women, diabetes could be an ignored cause. Women diagnosed with diabetes before conception are at risk of infertility. Diabetes does not decrease the chances of conception in women but it increases the chances of miscarriage and birth defects in children delivered by diabetic mothers.
A set of transvaginal scans and hormonal analysis to assess the reproductive health of diabetic women trying to conceive is done at GarbhaGudi by experienced gynaecologists. GarbhaGudi guides women with proper medications and required diet and lifestyle amendments, preparing them towards creating a life they love. Diabetes in men can also influence the factors that could lead to infertility among couples.
Male driven infertility accounts to 1/3rd of the causes of infertility
- Diabetes can cause erectile dysfunction
- It can cause a low testosterone level (hypogonadism)
- It can also lead to low libido (low sex drive)
- Reduces the sperm quality and count Fortunately, diabetes is a treatable condition, though there is no cure.
Ways to bring the blood sugars under control !!
- Have a healthy calculated diet
- Adequate amount of physical activity that burns enough calories
- Staying within the BMI range
- Quitting smoking
- Regular visits to the physicians to analyse the blood glucose and insulin levels.
The effect of diabetes on infertility depends on various factors:
- The type of diabetes
- Duration for which the person is diabetic
- Glucose levels assessed with HbA1c %
- Few medications that are prescribed for diabetes may interfere with pregnancy and hence women with diabetes are first advised to get control of their blood glucose levels when planning for a pregnancy. GarbhaGudi has perfect solutions for any cause of infertility. Diabetes is just another treatable cause.