You’re experiencing shaking hands, brain fog, and an incomprehensible jumble of emotions. And … the reason for all these symptoms is a positive home pregnancy test result. Some women are on cloud nine, others start to panic, and others just freeze with their jaws dropped. But all of them have the same question: what to do next? A step-by-step action plan is in the article.
1. Calm down
If nothing else, heed this advice. Women who strongly want—and vice versa—who are afraid to get pregnant, can sometimes mentally conjure up the second line. In any case, pull yourself together.
Don’t get distracted, it doesn’t work. Instead, breathe deeply and calmly or talk to your partner/husband or a trusted friend/family member about the situation. It will help a lot.
The typical mistake is to start reading reviews from online forums, where other pregnant women and young mothers chat. The information from these sources isn’t always accurate or true. Also, users often write some scary stories about pregnancy or childbirth. Spare your nerves and imagination and read only professional literature or talk with your doctor
2. Recheck the result
As soon as the ability to think clearly returns, it is advisable double-check the result. It’s better to buy 2-3 tests, but of different brands and types and ideally—from another pharmacy. Read the test instructions carefully. Tests can reveal false positive results due to incorrect use, improper storage or if they’re expired.
You may see the false positive result in these situations:
- Recent abortion, miscarriage
- Ectopic pregnancy
- If outside organic solids (e.g. dust) contaminate the test
- Treatment with hormonal medicine
- Some types of cysts, uterine fibroids and similar diseases
If there are any doubts, you can repeat the test in 2-3 days. If you are pregnant, then the confirmation lines will appear brighter. Do your results still show pregnancy? It’s time to get to the third step.
3. Talk to mom
Talking to your mother is not only good for moral support or sharing your joy. A conversation with your mom is needed to find out how her pregnancy and childbirth went. The information will help the doctor better understand how to manage your own pregnancy. There are some questions you should ask your parent about:
- What were my weight and height when I was born?
- Did you have any complications during pregnancy or childbirth?
- Did you suffer from high blood pressure during your pregnancy?
- What kind of childhood diseases did I have (rubella, chickenpox, etc.)?
It also makes sense to recall all of your chronic or serious diseases or allergies in the past. Your mother might be able to help you.
4. Make an appointment with the doctor
It’s a natural and obvious step. However, as evidence has stated, a lot of women postpone a visit to the doctor or do not consider it necessary to go to the clinic at all. That’s wrong, of course. The earlier the mother-to-be makes an appointment, the more likely the doctor prevents the development of fetal abnormalities or complications during pregnancy.
If the test showed two strips not due to pregnancy or product defect, the doctor will determine the cause and prescribe the appropriate treatment.
What does the doctor do during the first visits?
4.1. Order a lab test for hCG-level detection
If your pregnancy duration is too short, even a gynecological examination may not reveal pregnancy. But the test of gonadotropin detection will give you a straight answer. The hormone is much more easily detected in the blood than in urine. If the home test showed an incorrect result, the lab test will confirm it.
The doctor can refer you for some blood and urine tests or thyroid gland examination. He or she may also recommend that you to go through general examination from a therapist, ophthalmologist, otolaryngologist and several other specialists.
You’ll often have to have tests during pregnancy, almost every time before your visit to the gynecologist. However, it is better not to miss them, as they are very important for maintaining a healthy pregnancy. All procedures are aimed not only at tracking the child’s development, but also at taking care of the mother’s well-being.
4.3. Recommend prenatal vitamins
A gynecologist can prescribe vitamins for low hemoglobin level, weak immunity, hormonal disorders and discomfort in general. They will improve your health and the added nutrients may even enhance your skin, hair and fingernails. .
4.4. Order an ultrasound
The first ultrasound won’t be ordered earlier than two weeks after your missed period. Its main goal is to exclude an ectopic pregnancy. It also can detect any problems of the genitals
An ultrasound to determine the baby’s gender and its development will be ordered much later.
4.5. Schedule the appointments
You’ll have to see the doctor almost more often than your husband. If the pregnancy has no complications, the frequency of appointments will most likely be one visit per month, but not fewer. Closer to the time of birth, you will have to go to the gynecologist more often.
It’s better to schedule the appointments with your doctor from the very beginning, so that you don’t have to cancel any plans and get to the doctor in a hurry down later in your pregnancy.
5. Provide yourself with information
Books, reliable internet sources and birthing classes are useful and important. A woman, who knows how her body changes and how her child grows, feels more confident. And confidence and calmness ease childbirth a lot.
Follow your doctor’s advice. These nine months are not the time to follow alternative advice or experimental regimens.
6. Enjoy your pregnancy
Almost every pregnancy causes some discomfort. It’s natural and quite passable. However, it’s better to try to surround yourself with the most comfortable environment.
Communicate with pleasant people, visit beautiful places; uplifted emotions positively affect the nervous system of the baby and its health in general. And, the mother-to-be also benefits from it.
But there is a “but.” Pregnancy is not the best time for profound changes. Therefore, if a pregnant woman:
- Smokes, she must not give up this habit abruptly. It is better to gradually reduce the quantity of cigarettes smoked each day until that number is zero.
- Does not stick to a healthy schedule; she will have to try to recover it slowly. It makes sense to ask the father-to-be about it, too.
- Got used to physical activity, it’s recommended to exclude strength and intense training. You can replace them with simple walks or yoga for pregnancy;
- Likes junk food; it is best to reduce the amount. A woman may change her tastes a lot and it often causes cravings for junk food. You should not completely deny yourself the pleasure, however, it’s prudent to limit the amount of such food. Be sure that your diet consists mainly of healthy foods.
- Is an active person who cannot sit with her arms folded. She can maintain her former lifestyle. But she will definitely have to keep track of her daily schedule and nutrition, as well as eliminate stress and overwork.
A positive pregnancy test can be either the result of a product defect or a sign of motherhood. Regardless, it is better to recheck everything and visit the doctor’s office. Such a step will help ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy for you and your child.