By the age of 45, as many as half of all women in the United States have had an unplanned pregnancy, leading to the births of 3 million children per year. Pregnancy can be a challenging time for any woman, but for teenage girls, it can be especially difficult. Although teenage pregnancies are at historical lows since the 1990s, they still occur, and they can create a major stumbling block for young women who have limited resources.
To complicate matters, misinformation often persists, and many pregnant teens don’t know what to do when they miss a period or see a plus sign on an at-home test. The best way to meet this challenge head-on is to know the facts and seek out free pregnancy help and resources where they are available. To help get you started, here are three misconceptions that teens often have about pregnancy—and the facts that disprove them.
Myth #1: It’s impossible to get pregnant if it’s your first time having sex.
Fact: Any unprotected sex can result in pregnancy, whether it’s your first time having intercourse or not. In fact, even contraception can fail when it is used. If you have had sex, unprotected or not, it’s important to pay attention to the early warning signs of pregnancy—which are often mistaken for PMS.
Myth #2: Getting pregnant as a teenager means never completing your education.
Fact: Getting an education while pregnant or raising a child isn’t impossible. In fact, today there are many alternative education programs that help young mothers receive a high school diploma. Continuing your education is one of the best ways for you to secure employment opportunities for the future, so you can continue providing for your child. Above all, help is available if you’re willing to seek it out.
Myth #3: Teens have nowhere to turn to when they find out that they’re pregnant.
Fact: If you suspect that you may be pregnant, you aren’t alone.
You can receive free pregnancy help at one of your local teen pregnancy centers. These centers offer free pregnancy tests and information on pregnancy, and their staff members can also provide you with resources on everything from telling your parents to finding ways to prevent teen pregnancy. Many of these centers also offer ultrasounds and other procedures (usually after six to eight weeks when you’ll see a heartbeat).
Are you seeking free pregnancy help and other information? Don’t hesitate to contact us.The information provided here is general in nature. It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention. Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.