So you have been trying, or you haven’t.
Saved article for later
You have been planning or you have been hoping. Whatever way you get to it, eventually something tells you, you need to head off to the Supermarket and pick up a pregnancy test to confirm or allay your hopes -or fears.
Ironically, buying a pregnancy test is a lot like buying condoms. You first select a suitably out-of-familiar-territory, location for your purchase, in order to avoid any prying eyes. You then scan the shelves, trying to look as nonchalant as possible while trying to establish whether you need an early predictor test, an eye wateringly expensive one or, your run of the mill, bargain basement test? Having made your selection you sidle up to the least populated till point, shove the test on the belt and rapidly scan the shop, as if you are conducting some sort of drug deal at the check out point of a Tesco Metro! Having forked out an additional 5p for a bag to conceal your illicit purchase, you rush home to empty your bladder, pee on your hands and wait and see what the future holds.
We have been there too, you are not alone so, here are our top tips for peeing on the stick and what comes next:
To Pee or Not to Pee that is the question: Always read your instructions carefully before embarking on a test, they are expensive things and the result is possibly life altering, so it is worth spending the time to get it right. It is best to do the test first thing in the morning, to get the most reliable result and make sure you fully soak the stick! You can do this in free flowing pee (hence the wee on hands!) or you can pee into a pot and dunk the stick. To be honest you get pee everywhere no matter what you do!
Are you positive?: When the little lines come up or the “Pregnant” appears or whatever signal you receive says that you are pregnant, there is a whole mix of emotions. If you haven’t been planning it you scan back over the last few weeks and think of all the things you have got up to, that could have “harmed” the baby. Don’t. You didn’t know you were pregnant, you couldn’t have done anything differently and what is important is what you do now. If you have been planning this pregnancy for a long time, the realisation it has finally happened and the weight of that responsibility can be overwhelming, as the months stretch out ahead of you. Don’t panic and just take it a day at a time.
Folic Acid: As soon as you find out your pregnant head to the Pharmacy and get some Folic Acid. One tablet a day helps contribute to maternal tissue growth during pregnancy and will also make you feel like you are doing something to help the development of your little one.
Food and Drink: Look at the NHS direct recommendations on food and drink to avoid during pregnancy Silence can be golden: Many people choose to keep their pregnancy under wraps until after the 12 week scan. This can be because they want to make sure everything is ok with the baby before they announce the impending arrival to the world. It is also a great way to give yourself and your partner some time just the 2 of you to get used to the idea of becoming parents without the intrusion of everyone else. It is an incredibly special time and once the announcement is made there is no going back to that quiet time when it was just your secret!
The GP: After doing a test make an appointment with your GP and tell them that you are pregnant. Don’t be alarmed but strangely, they don’t do another pregnancy test, they take your word for it, which can be a bit strange! They will then take your blood pressure, ask you where you would like to have the baby (so have a look at the Maternity set up at your local hospital and have a think about which one you might like to use – surreal at this stage I know!). You will then be entered into the Maternity booking system and from then on your appointments and scans will be time lined and booked for you automatically. Your first appointment will be your booking in appointment at the hospital, with a midwife at around 10 weeks.
Parental Paranoia: Yup once the stick confirms it you are officially a parent or a pre-parent if you wish! The first 12 weeks can be tough. As a first time Mum you will be worried and anxious every time to feel a twinge or sickness as it will all be new. Trust your instincts and if there is anything worrying you don’t feel self conscious go to your GP. They are very understanding and will not laugh at your concerns or undermine your worries they are there to help so if you are worried about anything go and see them.