- I think I'm pregnant, how can I confirm it?
- Are home test kits reliable?
- What are the advantages of using a home test kit?
- What should I do once my pregnancy has been confirmed?
- Why is my doctor recommending a scan to confirm my due date?
- I've missed my period but the test shows negative, what does it mean?
- We've longed for this baby, so why am I upset and confused?
- I drank alcohol before I knew I was pregnant, is this bad for my baby?
- My cervical smear indicated an abnormality, is it something to worry about?
- I have had treatment to my cervix - will this affect my pregnancy?
- Will my second pregnancy be like my first?
You can confirm your pregnancy by three ways: urine test, blood test or ultrasound scan (occasionally). The urine test is the most routine method and can be tested by yourself at home (using a home pregnancy testing kit) or by a professional at a clinic.
If you follow the instructions carefully, a home test is as accurate as a doctor's or family planning clinic's test.
By using a home test, you can share your private moment in the privacy of your home! A home pregnancy test kit gives you an immmediate answer. Also, a sensitive testing kit can tell you that you are pregnant from the day your period is due.
It is a good idea to discuss your pregnancy with your doctor at the earliest opportunity. At this early stage, you need to have a check-up to ensure that all is going well, and to discuss how you want to organise your pregnancy care. If you are not registered with a doctor, you do need to contact a professional as soon as possible, preferably a doctor and/or midwife, or otherwise visit your local hospital's antenatal clinic.
If your periods are irregular, you were on the Pill when you got pregnant, or you have a long cycle with infrequent periods, your doctor will find it more accurate to date your pregnancy by looking at the size of the baby on a scan.
The obvious answer is that your period may, for a variety of reasons, simply be late, or perhaps you haven't ovulated. Or you may be pregnant but your urine did not contain enough hCG to show on the test. Wait for a few days and try again.
Give yourself time to adjust to the idea of being pregnant. It is not unusual to feel confused, or to feel ecstatic one minute and scared the next. Once you accept that the coming baby is a reality, you should be able to enjoy your pregnancy to the full.
Although regular, excessive drinking during pregnancy is bad for your baby, the likelihoodof your baby being affected by a little over-indulgence in early pregnancy is very small. Whether you are planning a pregnancy or have recently discovered that you are pregnant, it is always best to avoid alcohol.
There are different degrees of seriousness in smear abnormalities. However, irrespective of the degree of abnormality, it is unlikely that you will need or be given treatment for this while you are pregnant. Nevertheless, even though treatment for abnormal smears is unusual during pregnancy, you should not ignore any smear abnormality and it is best to seek medical advice from your doctor.
Modern treatments for an abnormal smear are very unlikely to affect your pregnancy but if you have had treatment to your cervix, you should mention this to your doctor at your first antenatal visit. Also, if you have had a cone biopsy (the removal of a cone-shaped area of cervical tissue), there is a slightly increased risk of having a late miscarriage or of a premature labour. Most women have normal pregnancies after cone biopsies.
In general, no two pregnancies are the same. Many women find that subsequent pregnancies are physically and psychologically easier than their first. To some extent, this is because you are more aware of what to expect. Physical symptoms of early pregnancy, such as nausea and vomiting, are sometimes less severe.