You missed your period. Maybe you are not the most regular so you shrug it off for a week or two, thinking you are just late.
But when a week or two goes by and your period still has not started, you start to worry. Before you can even confirm if you are pregnant, your mind races thinking about the implications for your future.
Take a pregnancy test
The first thing to do is to confirm whether or not you are pregnant. While yo may be experiencing pregnancy symptoms, until you confirm with a test, you cannot know with complete certainty. The first step is to take a urine pregnancy test. The best time of day to take a home urine pregnancy test is first thing in the morning as this is when your urine has the highest concentration of hCG, the pregnancy hormone.
If you have already taken a pregnancy test at home, your next step is to confirm your pregnancy with an ultrasound. It is important to confirm the viability of your pregnancy before making any decisions or taking any steps towards the outcome of your pregnancy. Thirty percent of all pregnancies naturally end in miscarriage so it is important to know if your pregnancy is viable especially if you are considering terminating your pregnancy.
What to expect during an ultrasound
Ultrasound technology has been around since the 1980s, but has become much more sophisticated since then. Today, ultrasound can confirm the viability of your pregnancy, identify how far along in the pregnancy you are, and verify if there is a fetal heartbeat.
An ultrasound typically takes around 15-20 minutes to complete. Wear comfortable clothes and bring a light jacket if you tend to get cold. Once in the exam room, you will sit on an examination table next to the ultrasound machine. The sonographer will have you pull your shirt up to reveal your lower abdomen and will put gel on your stomach. This is necessary because the ultrasound probe has a hard time picking up sound waves through air, so the gel acts as a barrier to prevent air from getting between the probe and your abdomen. After the gel is applied the sonographer will place the ultrasound probe on your abdomen and begin taking pictures for the doctor.
When your ultrasound is over, staff members at the pregnancy resource center are available to talk with you if you are feeling overwhelmed, have more questions, or just need a place to sit and think. Whether your pregnancy is planned or unplanned, Aim Women’s Center offers a safe place to process any fears, anger, anxiety, or other emotions you may be feeling as a result of your pregnancy confirmation. You should never feel pressured to make a decision you do not want to make, and if people are pressuring you, know that is not okay.