When you have completed Reading 1 you should be able to:
- Decide whether your social circumstances will allow your baby to be born into a loving relationship and care.
- Understand the need to consult a health professional before falling pregnant.
Consider your social welfare and health before falling pregnant.
Social aspects that you should consider are:
- If you fall pregnant now, what implications will this have for you? Falling pregnant while at school, college or university may seriously jeopardise your ideal to obtain a qualification that will enable you to follow a career.
- If you are looking for work or just started a new job, pregnancy should rather be postponed until you have found work or have established yourself in your new job.
- A baby must be born into a loving relationship between you and the father or your baby. You must be convinced that the father of your baby will be a good father and a good husband as well as being able to take care of you and your baby.
- Consider your home circumstances carefully. It is always better to create a baby friendly environment with the necessary support in place prior to falling pregnant.
- Can you and your husband or partner afford to have a baby now? To have a baby and raise a child is expensive and requires careful financial planning.
- Social habits that need your serious consideration are:
- Alcohol use
- Social drug use
All these are harmful when falling pregnant and during pregnancy. These harmful habits must be quit before falling pregnant.
Health aspects should be considered:
A consultation with a health care professional, whether a doctor or registered nurse, before falling pregnant is a must. Your doctor or the professional nurse at your clinic (i.e. the family planning clinic) will know your medical history and have your health record. They will tell you whether you have health problems that first need to be treated prior to falling pregnant.
Prior to falling pregnant, you must be certain that:
- Your baby will be born into a loving relationship and care.
- Your health is good and any health problems were optimally treated.