If you have recently had unprotected sex with your girlfriend, there is a chance she could be pregnant. The unknown can be hard to swallow, and the “what if’s” might make you nervous.
But take a deep breath. Thousands of women become pregnant every day, and according to the CDC, more than half of those pregnancies are unplanned. You, like most of the world, can get through an unplanned pregnancy and may even be better for it!
Symptoms of Pregnancy
Have you wondered why your girlfriend cries after seeing a sappy commercial and then, five minutes later, is laughing about something that you didn’t find funny? Maybe she gets upset about things that don’t usually bother her, like the fact that you were late from work or that she doesn’t want to wear any of the clothes in her closet.
Mood swings can be one of the first signs of pregnancy. Other symptoms include a missed period, fatigue, headache, and frequent urination.
She may also become more sensitive to smells. If the smell brewing in the coffee pot or toaster makes her run to the toilet, that may be another sign that she is pregnant.
When to Take a Pregnancy Test
The only way to find out if she’s pregnant is to take a test. This should usually be taken at least a week after a missed period in order to be the most accurate.
Some brands of home tests claim to be able to detect pregnancy as soon as a couple days after conception. She may wish to take one of these, and then if she gets a negative result, wait a few more days and then try again.
How Accurate Are Pregnancy Tests?
Pregnancy tests work by looking for the pregnancy hormone hCG. This hormone grows in intensity during the first trimester, may be hardly detectable right after conception, but will be noticeably present within the first few weeks.
Because of this, you can get a false negative test if you take it too early. If the test doesn’t detect hCG, it will tell you that you are not pregnant. That is why you could try taking it again after a missed period when the hormone levels are higher.
False positive tests are rare and usually only occur when there is a condensation line that makes the test look positive when in fact, it is negative.
If you are uncertain if you are pregnant, we offer free pregnancy testing at our center.
What Should We Do If Her Pregnancy Test is Positive?
First, stop and breathe again. It might be a lot to take in. If your girlfriend is pregnant, the next thing you will want to consider is getting an ultrasound. This will tell you how far along her pregnancy is, which will help narrow down the options that are available to plan out your next steps. For instance, if she is considering taking the abortion pill, it can only be taken in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy.
At our center, we offer referrals to clinics that provide free ultrasounds, which can save you hundreds of dollars.
After you have an ultrasound, it might be good to start researching your options. You won’t want to assume to know everything about your options (e.g. abortion, adoption or parenting). There are a lot of misconceptions circulating about all of these, and it’s better to find out the facts for yourself.
At our center, we can give you more information about all of these, and answer your questions.
We want to be in your corner during this uncertain time. Please call us today to set up a free pregnancy test, have us answer your questions, or set up an appointment for a free ultrasound.