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Pregnancy and you

There comes a time in most people’s lives when the idea of having a child is a very realistic and exciting possibility. There are some things to think about if you and your partner decide that now is the time for you to extend your family.

Symptoms of pregnancy

If you’re trying to have a baby, you’ll need to be aware of some of the signs of pregnancy. These include missed periods, swollen breasts and sickness. However, there are other symptoms that are commonly felt on a day to day basis.

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Some examples of these are fatigue, tiredness and various aches and pains. Aching in the lower back is one symptom that occurs fairly frequently and early on, not long after conception. Sometimes, a dull ache can continue throughout your pregnancy. The sudden surge of hormones that your body experiences at this time can sometimes give rise to headaches as well.

Once you reach your second month of pregnancy, you may find yourself needing to urinate a lot more frequently than usual. The skin around your nipples may darken and you may suddenly become unusually partial to certain foods, or develop aversions to others which you had previously found quite enjoyable. Pickled goods are commonly foods that pregnant women often report a sudden penchant for.

What to do if you think you might be pregnant

One thing that’s really important to think about when contemplating having a child is the situation you’re in and what your lifestyle is like at the moment. Are you financially stable enough to be able to welcome another life into your family? Do you have enough time to give a child the care and attention it requires, and if not, can you give up enough of what you are doing in order to make time?

As well as practicalities such as these, you’ll need to find out whether you are indeed pregnant. Initially, most people test for pregnancy at home with a home pregnancy test, usually after experiencing some of the symptoms above. These tests are relatively cheap, very convenient and easy to get hold of at most chemists and supermarkets. They yield pretty accurate results most of the time; you can always take two or three if you are unsure.

A positive test should always be followed up by a trip to the doctor for further checks. You’ll also be able to ask for advice from your GP about how best to ensure the health of your growing baby.