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Very Nervous About Trying To Get Pregnant
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I have been on a gluten-free diet for 3 years though I have not been very faithful to the program in the past few months. I am not immediately sensitive to gluten (delayed reaction - usually 2 days) so it's easy to dismiss the consequences at times. I also have hypothyroidism and migraines and am on medication to treat both. Neither of my doctors is a specialist on celiac (I live in a small town) so they don't give me very specific advice. I learn everything from books & the internet.

My husband and I want to start trying to get pregnant, but I am very nervous about this since the celiac and hypothyroidism both pose dangers to the fetus and can cause miscarriage. I'm 36 so I don't feel we can wait much longer. I've been back on the gluten-free diet for the past few weeks and have worked to be careful about what I eat. How long should I wait before going off the birth control? Does anyone have suggestions for making pregnancy successful while on a gluten-free diet? I would really appreciate any advice!

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The first part you obviously know, that you must adhere to the diet. The little cheats and laxness here and there do add up and you are sabotaging yourself.

Next I would go to my gp and ask to have all my nutrient levels checked. I don't know if you did this when you first went gluten free, but as celiacs we tend to be malabsorptive and can have major deficiencies. Many of these, if not supplemented, can remain even after we have recovered. You should have vitamin levels checked, especially A, B's, folate, D and minerals like potassium, iron, zinc, copper. Supplement as necessary for any deficiencies.

Apart from these, you should be good to go. :) Plenty of exercise, nutritious whole foods and all the usual stuff.

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I have been on a gluten-free diet for 3 years though I have not been very faithful to the program in the past few months. I am not immediately sensitive to gluten (delayed reaction - usually 2 days) so it's easy to dismiss the consequences at times. I also have hypothyroidism and migraines and am on medication to treat both. Neither of my doctors is a specialist on celiac (I live in a small town) so they don't give me very specific advice. I learn everything from books & the internet.

My husband and I want to start trying to get pregnant, but I am very nervous about this since the celiac and hypothyroidism both pose dangers to the fetus and can cause miscarriage. I'm 36 so I don't feel we can wait much longer. I've been back on the gluten-free diet for the past few weeks and have worked to be careful about what I eat. How long should I wait before going off the birth control? Does anyone have suggestions for making pregnancy successful while on a gluten-free diet? I would really appreciate any advice!

Wow, this is exactly what I've been thinking. I've had a miscarriage and an ectopic, and lots of "chemical" pregnancies since trying for a baby the past six years. Then I got diagnosed two months ago with celiac, which by then was a GREAT thing to hear, since up until that point all the testing had just shown "unexplained infertility." It's nice to have a reason for it.

But I'm frankly terrified to start trying again -- and I just turned 35, so it's all ticking clocks with me. I'm impressed you've been gluten-free for 3 years and allowed yourself to heal up before getting into the fertility stuff -- that takes a lot of patience. I'm giving myself just one year of healing time, so I'll be starting again at your point next year.

I'm seeing the OB-GYN next week to talk about this and hoping to get into the Mayo Clinic to get a better workup done at some point (I'm somewhat in the sticks). Mushroom is right -- getting a checkup on all your vitals and making sure you're on the right prenatals, etc. is a good first step.

After that, I think it's just about courage, honestly. It sounds like a lot of women here were able to start conceiving after about two years gluten-free. You should be OK, since you've left in some buffer time to allow for glutenings.

I think getting your tTg levels checked might be good, since I think I saw a study recently that said tTg may be involved in miscarriages.

Please come back and post with your experiences as you go forward -- I for one would appreciate hearing how it goes. Good luck!

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I was wheat free, didn't know about gluten-free problems then. I did have a number of early miscarriages, but wanted to say I had my 2 lovelies at 37 and 39.

I agree with the others,, get tested to check no major issues, have some suppliements, make healthy food choices. I found it comforting to keep my tummy warm and not have very cold drinks early on, but not sure what evidence there is on that.

For me, I had to get my stress levels down, it seemed to throw out my hormones, along with the gluten stuff.

Take it easy on yourselves, be kind to each other keep a bit of romance. Lots of us have kids, it is often possible. From what I recall,, the research shows. minimal difference in outcomes once you are diagnosed and eating gluten-free

Good luck both of you ( and other halves of course).

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I was wheat free, didn't know about gluten-free problems then. I did have a number of early miscarriages, but wanted to say I had my 2 lovelies at 37 and 39.

Thanks -- very comforting to know that there's some hope for us starting fresh while on the wrong side of 35. :D

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Thanks to everyone who replied - these positive messages are definitely what I needed! I've been back on a strict gluten-free diet for a few weeks now and it's been easier to stay faithful since I have a worthwhile end goal (besides my longterm health, of course!). I just made an appointment with my endocrinologist to have my thyroid levels rechecked and a nutrient test to make sure my body is fully ready to support a pregnancy. Fortunately, my thyroxin levels have been pretty solid for the past few years and I have taken B-12 shots for about 2 years along with multivitamins so I'm hopeful I won't have issues there.

Pregnancy is already such a stressful event and having these health issues certainly makes the stakes higher. But I agree with you that I need to do my best to lower the stress and to relax and enjoy my free time. Since I'm in the middle of my dissertation and plan to start looking for a job this fall I don't know if that will be possible, but I will certainly try and will ask my husband to help find ways for us both to de-stress.

I've bought an ovulation kit and have been reading extensively on fertility, so I feel prepared to start and will keep my fingers crossed that it doesn't take us a long time to conceive. Thanks for your supportive words!

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I had my children at age 35 and 37, before my diagnosis. I had already started having uncontrolled diarrhea before I got pregnant with the first one so I was pretty ill already. I think that the pregnancies and nursing may have caused some of the symptoms to improve. My message is that even untreated, I managed to have two healthy pregnancies and produced two wonderful children. You are way ahead of the game with a diagnosis and gluten-free diet. Good luck and best wishes to you and your husband.

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I have to say reading your posts have certainly eased my mind a good deal! I am gluten intolerant but have a great deal of inflammation in my gut so am going both gluten free and dairy free and have been so for about a month. On top of this, I have Type 1 Diabetes and PCOS so definitely have an uphill battle ahead of me! My husband and I have just started trying and while I have a reproductive endocrinologist who is helping me along the way, the gut issues have caused me a little worry in terms of both getting pregnant and carrying to term. I am thankful for posts like these because they certainly help when I am feeling discouraged!!

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I have had symptoms of celiac for 30 years during which I had 5 whole, healthy, children, albeit I had an early misscarriage before the five. I am happy the Lord gave me all five of them. I didn't know I had celiac disease until recently. Watch your nutrient level and get some good supplements to optimize for the little ones. I hope you will do well and enjoy the blessings which children bring.

Diana

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Well, Monday morning I went in for a routine blood work and monitoring for what I thought was my AF...and they called me a couple hours later and told me I was pregnant! I couldn't believe it! Now, they are going to check my HCG levels tomorrow to see if they are doubling appropriately.

After everything I have read on here and because of my pre existing diabetes, I am extremely nervous about miscarriages! I have always read that a symptom for many people during pregnancy is C - but since I am more prone to D due to my gut, I was wondering if people here had more C or D due to these issues?

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Hey, congratulations. That was short work :D I hope you have smooth pregnancy.

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Fantastic news, congratulations.

Pregnancy does all sorts of weird things to the body, most of which you don't know about before :). For me, I tend to get D more usually. I got some of that while pregnant, but also had C while pregnant, just 2 to 3 times each pregnancy.

If you have fasting blood sugar tested, check that the drink they plan to give you is gluten-free, some people here have had problems with them. Find out in advance, so you can agree an alternative.

The first few weeks can be very tiring, try and rest as much as you can.

Fabulous news.

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Thanks so much! It just feels good to say it right now! Although I know I'm not out of the woods yet. I have my second HCG blood draw tomorrow and when I have the results of that, I will feel better. Until then, I consider it up in the air (despite the positive blood test).

I am already tired all the time but yet when I go to bed I have a hard time sleeping. Very frustrating!

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Wow, this is exactly what I've been thinking. I've had a miscarriage and an ectopic, and lots of "chemical" pregnancies since trying for a baby the past six years. Then I got diagnosed two months ago with celiac, which by then was a GREAT thing to hear, since up until that point all the testing had just shown "unexplained infertility." It's nice to have a reason for it.

But I'm frankly terrified to start trying again -- and I just turned 35, so it's all ticking clocks with me. I'm impressed you've been gluten-free for 3 years and allowed yourself to heal up before getting into the fertility stuff -- that takes a lot of patience. I'm giving myself just one year of healing time, so I'll be starting again at your point next year.

I'm seeing the OB-GYN next week to talk about this and hoping to get into the Mayo Clinic to get a better workup done at some point (I'm somewhat in the sticks). Mushroom is right -- getting a checkup on all your vitals and making sure you're on the right prenatals, etc. is a good first step.

After that, I think it's just about courage, honestly. It sounds like a lot of women here were able to start conceiving after about two years gluten-free. You should be OK, since you've left in some buffer time to allow for glutenings.

I think getting your tTg levels checked might be good, since I think I saw a study recently that said tTg may be involved in miscarriages.

Please come back and post with your experiences as you go forward -- I for one would appreciate hearing how it goes. Good luck!

New member here and I don't want to hijack the thead, but the mention of an ectopic pregancy caught my eye.

 

I was diagnosed with a gluten sensitivity in July 2012 and fully adopted a gluten free diet in September. I did not get an endoscopy so I'm not sure about any damage caused.

 

I had an ectopic pregnancy in December and am still shocked that I have no answers as to why it happened. I can't help but feel like my gluten intolerance could have something to do with it (among other possibilities), but haven't discussed with my doctor. After reading this thread though I think my next step will be to get my vitamin levels checked.

 

Were you given any information that celiac/gluten intolerance could be a possible cause?

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I found out today that I am pregnant, though only very early, about 2 weeks.  I'll definitely be sticking to a fully gluten-free diet and will be alerting my doctor to some of the complications that can arise from a pregnancy in someone with celiac. But at the very least, I know I can get pregnant and that's a good sign for someone who's had this condition as long as I have.

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CONGRATULATIONS Take it easy on yourself, wishing you a happy and successful pregnancy :)

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    • Hi everyone, I've been reading this forum sporadically and have some questions of my own. I'm in my 40s and was diagnosed with celiac last December by biopsy and blood work after months of tests by my primary and then a gastro. My husband, around the same age as me, was dx'd with stage 4 cancer a month later, so admittedly it's took me longer than I'd have liked to learn about celiac. Now I feel pretty on top of my diet. I mostly make my own food - proteins and veggies, with some certified gluten-free snacks in the mix - and am pretty strict about what I will/won't eat at friend's houses or in restaurants (I prefer to go to dedicated gluten-free kitchens whenever possible). I'm doing okay on the diet, but still getting glutened every so often, usually when I let me guard down outside the home. I also periodically see my primary and a naturopath (who happens to have celiac!), but still, I have many questions if anyone would care to answer:

      -FATIGUE. I'm still so tired, fatigued so much of the time. My doctors blame this on the stress of my husband's diagnosis and my periodic trouble sleeping. But even during weeks where I'm sleeping enough (8-10 hrs a day), eating right, exercising as I can, trying to keep stress at bay, I'm still so bleeping tired. Maybe not when I wake up, but by late afternoon. Often my legs even feel weak/wooden. Has anyone else experienced greater fatigue early on after being diagnosed? This will pass, yes? I know I could cut out the sweets and that could help, but also, being a caregiver is hard and sometimes it's nice to eat your feelings between therapy sessions.  

      -SYMPTOMS CAUSED BY FATIGUE? Sometimes I'll have other "feels like I've been glutened" symptoms if I haven't gotten enough sleep, though I'm trying so hard to sleep at least 8 hours a night these days. Hasn't happened in a while thankfully, but there was a point this summer where my insomnia was bad and my arms were achy and I had some crazy flank/back pain I'd never experienced before. For weeks. Doctor ordered me to sleep sleep sleep, taking Benedryl if needed. I did, and the symptoms went away, but weird, yes? Has this happened to you? I ask because I want to make sure I'm getting all strange pains tested to the full extent if there's a chance it's something other than celiac. I do sometimes still feel that strange side stitch after a CC incident.

      -SKIN PROBLEMS. I have had a smidge of eczema since I was a teen and it - and the dermatitis herpetiformis I've acquired with my dx - are out of control right now. I recognize the connection with stress, but also, has anyone found any great natural remedies for DH to stop the itching? I've tried so many useless ointments and medicated creams, a number of them given to my by a dermo months ago. I see my naturopath this week, but thought I'd ask here too.

      -MOSTLY gluten-free KITCHEN GOOD ENOUGH? My husband is supportive of my diet and mostly eats gluten free meals with me, but we still keep a gluten-y toaster for him and the gluten-y dog food in a corner of the kitchen and he still makes the occasional meal with gluten for himself on his own cookware (ravioli, pizza, mac n cheese, etc). Or sometimes I make eggs/toast and the like for him when he's too sick to move. Otherwise, we're militant about how we cook, which cookware we use, etc. He even has a kitchen nook off our den where he makes sandwiches. But sometimes I wonder if having two separate sponges in our shared-ish main kitchen is enough and I should just banish all gluten whatsoever from the kitchen. I can't be the only one with a mixed kitchen, right? How do you do it if you have a mixed-eating family?

      Thank you so much!  
    • Hang in there!  Count your blessings.  Do something you like to do and relax. I know that is hard to do as a young mother (as I sit here in the kitchen sipping coffee quietly as my teenager is sleeping in after a late football game last night where she marched in 90 degree plus weather in full uniform).   But seriously, take a few minutes to relax!  
    • Meredith, this is very true. A colonoscopy is for diagnosis of the lower intestine, endoscopy for the upper intestine.  How did your doctor interpret the tests? I suggest you read the link Cycling Lady gave you because it contains a lot of good information. 
    • Sorry, but this product (supplement) is not even certified gluten free.   Seems odd that a product geared to Non-Celiac Gluten Intolerance would not take the extra step of getting certified.   I guess I am a Nervous Nellie, especially after the reports that several probiotics were contaminated with gluten.   https://celiac.org/blog/2015/06/probiotics-your-friend-or-foe/
    • Thank you for posting that. I've had a lot of that bloodwork done and everything is normal. At the peak of this belly bug I had blood work done and my white count was fine. I think it's just my health anxiety scaring me into thinking this is something scarier (to me) than celiac. Maybe the anxiety will subside once I go gluten-free. The anxiety is brutal.
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