Posts Tagged ‘ Pregnancy Test ’

Pregnancy Tests Coming to a Bar Near You?

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

In January, I posted about how England had come up with a plan to curb Fetal Alcohol Syndrome by selling pregnancy tests in pub bathrooms—with the thought being that given the opportunity, a woman who thought she might be pregnant would take the pregnancy test before she went ahead with a night of boozing, and therefore could prevent causing alcohol-related disorders in her future baby if she was in fact pregnant. Now, a senator in Alaska is wanting to take things one step further by using taxpayer’s money to supply free pregnancy tests in bathrooms of all the bars and restaurants in his state.

Republican senator Pete Kelly from Fairbanks got the idea after getting involved with an organization called Empowering Hope, whose mission is to eliminate Fetal Alcohol Syndrome from Alaska.

According to Alaska Dispatch, senator Kelly explained that “the pregnancy test assumes the best of us. If you know (you’re pregnant), you’ll make the right decision.” When asked about whether he’d also thought about making condoms readily available, he said no, because the message the state would be sending would be different. Instead of encouraging people to make a good decision, he said free condoms send the message, “’Here, use this, because you are not going to control yourself.’”

I don’t agree with that philosophy AT ALL. If your goal is protect unborn children from Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, I think if you’re going to give out pregnancy tests, why not give out condoms that could potentially prevent women who are drinking from getting pregnant in the first place?

Drinking while pregnant is a huge issue, and one worth talking about again and again because it’s been proven that drinking during pregnancy can cause miscarriages, premature births, and fetal alcohol syndrome, which can lead to low birth weights, birth defects and learning and behavioral disorders.

A respected study from 2012 shows that as little as two drinks a week in the first trimester can increase a woman’s risk of miscarriage. Of course, you might be thinking, “I had a few drinks before I found out I was pregnant and everything is still fine with my baby,” but once you know, why risk anything bad happening to your baby over the craving for a glass of wine? I know I can wait the nine months!

I’m sure people will have a lot to say about whether these pregnancy tests should be government funded (is that what you’d want your tax money going towards?), but I’m not opposed to pregnancy tests being accessible in bars. As I mentioned in my last post on the topic, having these tests in public bathrooms will probably contribute to even longer bathroom lines. (Is that faint line really a line? Let me do it again! You know what I’m talking about!) But I think having to hold it a little longer is worth it if it means someone finds out they’re pregnant and chooses not to drink that night. Don’t you?

Wondering if you’re pregnant? Answer a few questions and find if you might be.

TELL US: Should pregnancy tests in bars be government-funded? Would you take a pregnancy test in a bar? Why or why not?

Alcohol During Pregnancy: Safe or Not?
Alcohol During Pregnancy: Safe or Not?
Alcohol During Pregnancy: Safe or Not?

Image of pregnancy test courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Would You Take a Pregnancy Test in a Bar?

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

With so much news about whether pregnant women should be drinking, with a loud “No!” coming from people who want to protect future kids from the horrible affects of Fetal Alcohol Disorder, England has come up with a plan to start selling pregnancy tests in pubs so women can make sure they’re not pregnant before they have a big night of boozing. Brilliant idea or totally ridiculous? I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I think it’s a good idea. I know it’s weird to be selling them in a coin machine next to tampons, but most places sell condoms in the women’s restrooms, so why not pregnancy tests too?

My period was late leading up to my husband’s big birthday bash (I won’t embarrass him by divulging how old he was at the time, but it was a milestone birthday) that I had painstakingly planned for months in a private room at a kickass Mexican place, with a 7-piece Mariachi band brought in especially for the occasion, along with a cart filled with authentic Mexican popsicles, and quite possibly the world’s best margaritas (with none of that icky sour mix—we’re talking the real deal!). Of course I wanted to celebrate, but I also had to know if I was pregnant, because if so it meant virgin drinks all night for me.

So just a few hours before the party, I had my dazed-and-confused husband (What? We could be pregnant—already?) run out to get a pregnancy test. It turns out I was pregnant (on the first try after doing the whole ovulation calendar thing!), and I was drinking an alcohol-free lime-cucumber concoction till the wee hours of the morning.

Yes, having these tests available in women’s restrooms does mean we’re going to have even longer waiting times, ladies. Those tests can be more complicated than you think (Is that faint line really a line? Let me do it again! You know what I’m talking about!). But I think having to hold it a little longer is worth it if it means someone finds out they’re pregnant and chooses not to drink that night. Don’t you?

Wondering if you’re pregnant? Answer a few questions and find if you might be.

TELL US: Would you take a pregnancy test in a bar? Do you think it’s a good idea to sell them where they serve alcohol?

Image of pregnancy test courtesy of Shutterstock.

Tips for Taking an At-Home Pregnancy Test
Tips for Taking an At-Home Pregnancy Test
Tips for Taking an At-Home Pregnancy Test

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Can You Check Your Miscarriage Risk With a Pregnancy Test?

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

I’ve already told you about the Clearblue Advanced Pregnancy Test with Weeks Estimator—which has the ability to tell you how far along in your pregnancy you are (well, at least it tells you if you’re 1-2 weeks along, 2-3, or 3+). I thought that alone was amazingly cool, but it turns out the test also has a separate possible function for those who have a history of miscarriage, or those who are worried they might have one.

Of course the people over at Clearblue didn’t design this snazzy new test for this purpose—but it’s pretty cool that it could be used this way. Especially because the March of Dimes estimates that as many as half of all pregnancies end in miscarriage—many occur before a woman even knows she’s pregnant. The majority of miscarriages happen in the first 13 weeks of pregnancy with only 1 to 5 percent occurring between weeks 13 and 19.

One of the main warning signs of a miscarriage is that the pregnancy hormone, known as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG)—which can be measured in a woman’s urine—does not rapidly rise the way it should in early pregnancy. So for instance, if you were to take one of these pregnancy tests and you showed up as “1-2 week pregnant”, and a week later you were to take it again, you’re reading should now say “2-3 weeks” or “3+ weeks” If it does not, it’s cause for concern, and you should see your doctor immediately.

This bonus effect could put some women at ease—just another sign that their pregnancy is moving along as it should. What a relief! But please promise you won’t run out and buy a cartload of these and start obsessing over whether all is well with your pregnancy! And even if you do, the good news is once you get the “3+ weeks pregnant” sign, the tests can’t tell you any more info. So then you can return to relying on your doctor for updates, which is a much better plan in the long run. All those years of schooling weren’t for nothing!

TELL US: Would you use a pregnancy test to find out if you were at risk for a miscarriage?

Image of woman with a pregnancy test courtesy of Shutterstock.

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A New Home Pregnancy Test That Will Blow Your Mind!

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

Pregnancy Tests and FertilitySomething’s a little off. Your period is late; you’re feeling out of sorts. Could you be…? Time to take a trip to the drug store (or more often than not, time to send your guy)! The whole anxiety begins…are you pregnant? Are you not pregnant? If you are, how many weeks pregnant are you? So many questions swirling through your head!

Starting September 1, for the first time in the United States, an at-home pregnancy test will be able to tell you just how long you’ve been pregnant. Well, sort of. The new Clearblue Advanced Pregnancy Test with Weeks Estimator— which has been available in Europe since 2008—will not only tell you if you are or aren’t pregnant, but with a new technology it will also estimate whether you are 1-2 weeks pregnant, 2-3 weeks or 3+ weeks.

The new test has two strips instead of one, and screens for the human chorionic gonadotropin hormone that appears in a woman’s urine stream after fertilization. Clearblue says the test is 99 percent accurate at detecting pregnancy from the day of a woman’s expected period, and about 93 percent accurate in estimating the number of weeks you’ve been pregnant.

What a great idea! Who doesn’t want more information when they first find out they’re pregnant? I know I was so nervous, that it took three positive pregnancy tests before I was sure I somehow didn’t screw up the test results, and even then I wanted to wait to see the doctor to confirm the results before I could fully let myself celebrate. But I think having something that would let me know how many weeks along I was, would have solidified in my head that it was truly real.

I think this is going to revolutionize pregnancy tests going forward. Now if only scientists could come up with a pregnancy test that could tell us from day one whether we were having a boy or girl—that would be a real breakthrough!

TELL US: Would you be more likely to buy a pregnancy test that would tell you how far along you are? Or would you prefer to wait to hear it from your doctor once you have your first ultrasound?

Image of couple courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Boston Bombing’s Pregnancy Miracle

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

Boston Marathon Bombing Miracle BabyOne of the most horrendous days of Caroline Reinsch’s life brought some of the best news ever. Caroline, a victim of the Boston Marathon bombing, and her boyfriend Christian Williams were in the crowd on that fateful day on April 15. They were there to cheer on a friend who was running the marathon. When the bombs went off, Caroline and Christian were both hit. Caroline suffered a bloody hole in her thigh and a split quad muscle; Christian’s legs and right hand were ripped open. Amidst all of the chaos, they were taken to two separate hospitals, not knowing if the other would live or die.

When Caroline was brought to the ER, she was asked the routine question before going in for an X-ray: “Is there a possibility you’re pregnant?” Since the couple had been trying to conceive since the fall of 2012 with no luck, she said, “It’s possible, but I don’t think so,” and she didn’t give it another thought as she was still confused and in shock of the traumatic events that had played out before her eyes.

For 11 days, Caroline and Christian texted and talked on the phone without seeing each other before Caroline was released. She immediately went across town to her boyfriend’s bedside. Christian was coming out of his sixth surgery, where doctors were trying desperately to save his right leg. A few days passed before she got a call from her doctor to go over her discharge papers. During that call, Caroline was told she was given a pregnancy test during her hospital visit (which she didn’t realize at the time), and that it was a “slight positive.” (I didn’t think it was possible to be a “little pregnant,” but apparently it is!)

It was too early to tell if Caroline was pregnant, but it looked possible that she was one to two weeks along in her pregnancy. Excited—after all she had been hoping to get pregnant for months now—she took a home pregnancy test. It was positive! Concerned it could have been too old since it was a leftover from months of trying to conceive, she had her friend buy her another one and she took it in the hospital restroom down the hall from Christian’s room. Still in disbelief, she wanted to make sure it was accurate before telling him such big news. It, too, was positive!

As Christian lay in his hospital bed still recovering from the massive trauma to his body, Caroline casually, but nervously, told him: “I have something for you.” Then handed him the positive pregnancy test. Overjoyed, the couple vowed to keep their little bundle a secret until Father’s Day, when they could reveal their baby surprise to their families all at once. Caroline is still in a brace, and Christian’s legs and hands are covered in scars, but Christian explains their feelings about the marathon the best: “Any pain or suffering I felt has been replaced with joy,” he told the Boston Globe. “Discovering that I was going to be a father is how I’ll always remember the Marathon.”

It’s so nice to know that out of something so horrible as the Boston Marathon Bombing came something so incredibly amazing: one couple’s “miracle baby.”

TELL US: How did you find out you were pregnant?

Image of pregnancy test courtesy of Shutterstock.

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