What is pregnancy?
Pregnancy is a state when a woman is carrying a fetus inside her womb. Pregnancy is usually 40 weeks long and is divided into 3 trimesters. It is measured from the last menstrual period to delivery. Pregnancy occurs when an egg cell from a female ovary is fertilised by a sperm of a male. Therefore it is important to note that unprotected sexual intercourse can result in pregnancy.
Common signs of pregnancy includes:
- Missed periods
- Nausea and vomiting
- Tender breasts
- Changes in mood
- Increased urination
A pregnancy test that you usually buy in a pharmacy checks for a chemical or hormone that is made by a placenta called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in a woman’s urine. Levels of hCG rises during the first trimester and is tested through the pregnancy sticks and tests.
If your pregnancy stick test is positive you should also visit your health provider or doctor for a blood test to confirm your pregnancy.
Getting unexpectedly pregnant can be one of the best news but to some it could be a scary one. There is a variety of emotions that can be felt when learning you are pregnant. You might feel fear, anger, panic, upset while others may feel joy and excitement; or it can be a mixture of all those emotions.
Unplanned pregnancy can especially be daunting for young girls outside of wedlock, who are not ready for motherhood. If you are one of them, do know that you are not alone. There is help out there, options and support.
Read more about unintended pregnancy here.
Contraception refers to anything that is used to prevent pregnancy. Without the use of contraception, sex usually results in sperm fertilising an egg, which can lead to pregnancy. While pregnancy and having children can be an important part of life for some people, not everyone is ready or able to have children! Contraception is also referred to as family planning, birth control or protection.
Read more about contraceptives here.
It is important to note that not all contraception methods prevent you from sexually transmitted infections or diseases (STIs and STDs).
To read more about STD prevention, click here.
Abstinence means choosing not to have sex. Abstinence can be a great choice for young people as it is 100% effective in preventing pregnancy and also sexually transmitted diseases.
To read more about abstinence, click here.
What is infertility?
It may be easy for women and men to get pregnant however, there are some women and men who struggle to get pregnant. Infertility is when someone is not able to conceive a pregnancy after 12 months of regular, unprotected sexual intercourse.
Infertility can be a sensitive topic to many and can lead to many emotional distress, insecurities or even tensions in marriages. Infertility can be caused by multiple factors such as problems with structure or function of reproductive systems.