The decision to have sex for the first time is a very personal one, and it helps to be as informed as possible. Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation out there, and you may have heard things that aren’t true from your friends or online. The truth is that you can absolutely get pregnant the first time that you have sex.

While condoms and other birth control measures are effective, you might not have thought to use them in the heat of the moment. Or, you might have even thought that they weren’t necessary. Worrying that you might be dealing with an unwanted pregnancy is stressful, but we have your back at PRC. Here’s what you need to know about how pregnancy happens and what we can do for you at our community pregnancy clinic.

1. WHEN CAN A GIRL GET PREGNANT?

Girls are capable of getting pregnant once they start ovulating. Although this happens at different ages for girls, it tends to start around the age of 11 or 12. This is also the same time when most girls begin menstruating. Once your body begins to release eggs, you are capable of getting pregnant. You should also know that ovulation is often unpredictable during the early years of menstruation, and you can get pregnant at any point during your cycle. You can get pregnant before your first period or even while you are menstruating.

2. WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF PREGNANCY?

Many of the earliest pregnancy symptoms feel a lot like you are about to get your period. You may feel slight cramping as the egg implants in your uterus. You may also feel slightly queasy and need to pee more than usual. Some girls feel headaches or have mood swings. Everybody is different, but you should watch for the hallmark sign of pregnancy, which is a missed period.

3. HOW CAN I FIND OUT IF I’M PREGNANT?

Being late for your period can cause you to feel a lot of different emotions, but there’s an easy way to find out if you are pregnant. A local pregnancy clinic can help you take a pregnancy test that gives you the answers that you need the very same day.

WHAT HAPPENS AT A CLINIC?

When you come to a community pregnancy clinic, you will notice that you are instantly surrounded by people who care. No one should ever judge you within clinic walls; the medical staff is there to help you during a stressful time. Worrying about an unwanted pregnancy can interfere with your ability to go about your normal life, and staff will help you right away.

The first thing that you will do at a clinic is complete some paperwork that helps them know how to help meet your needs. You will meet with a doctor or an RN, and she can talk to you about your pregnancy symptoms. After you talk, you can then give a urine sample to be tested for pregnancy. If your test comes back negative, then they will discuss ways to prevent STDs and pregnancies in the future.

If you are pregnant from your first time having sex, then there are lots of ways that a clinic can help. They offer ultrasounds that let you take a peek at your baby and further confirm your pregnancy. Patient Advocates can also talk to you about your options. Community pregnancy clinics like PRC are free, confidential, unbiased and truly do leave the decisions up to you. Our only goal is to help you make informed decisions while knowing that you are surrounded by support.

Are you or your partner worried about a possible pregnancy after having sex for the first time? At PRC, we can put you in touch with caring women who understand exactly what you are going through. Whether you need a pregnancy test or just want to find out how to prevent an unplanned pregnancy, we are right here and ready to help you with all of your concerns.