Unexpected Pregnancy Advice: Can I Get Through This?

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.” – Cayla Mills

You have plans for your life, and an unexpected pregnancy is not one of them. Yet, it is interesting how life has a way of surprising us with unforeseen detours that ultimately teach us more about our strength and resilience than if everything fell into place according to our plans. We can even experience great joy from life’s unexpected plans.

After the shock of learning you are pregnant wears off, you begin to think about what to do next. Like most women, you may ask yourself, “Can I get through this?” The short answer is, yes. Yes, you can get through this!

Here is some unexpected pregnancy advice to empower you and encourage you that you are going to be okay.

Keep Positive People Close

You already have fears going through your mind, so the last thing you need is people around you who are adding to your worries.  It is not mean to set boundaries to protect your emotional health right now. In fact, it is good for you.

Do not listen to anyone who has an agenda for you. This includes anyone who wants you to make one decision over another about your pregnancy. You are the one who will live with the outcome of whatever your choice is for the rest of your life, so your decision needs to be the choice that is best for you, not someone else. Be very strong about this. You can do it.

Choose Positive Thoughts

Neuroscience research repeatedly reveals that our thoughts create new neural pathways in our brains. In other words, our positive thoughts rewire our brains to think positively and stimulate positive feelings. In the same way, our negative thoughts rewire our brains to think negatively and stimulate negative feelings.

Choosing positive thoughts will help you cope with an unexpected pregnancy. So instead of asking yourself, “How could I let this happen?” or telling yourself that all your plans are ruined, ask yourself what you can do to stay healthy, and focus on the one next step.

Take One Step at a Time

Before you start thinking about next year or five years down the road, try to only think about your one next step. Our advice for this next step is to get unbiased and experienced pregnancy support. The trained staff at Willow Womens Center can help you understand your pregnancy options. We will provide you with all the facts you need to make a well-informed decision. After your visit – take a deep breath and allow yourself some time to process each possible option.

Pregnancy Support Is Available

If you choose to parent, Willow Womens Center offers a Parenting with Love and Logic® Program to equip you with the skills you need. Stay tuned to find out more about the new Mentoring Program we will be launching in the Spring 2020 – this will be geared toward women who are experiencing their first pregnancy. For those who choose abortion, Willow Womens Center offers a post-abortion recovery program if you are struggling with your emotions afterwards. If adoption is your best choice, we can help you connect with different adoption agencies!

Contact us online today for a confidential appointment or by calling 608-312-2025.

What Happens If I Test Positive for an STD?

If you have made the decision to be tested for a STD or STI, the wait between testing and receiving your results can feel long. You might be wondering what happens next if the test results are positive.

Willow Womens Center will walk you through your next steps if your STD test results are positive. We will discuss some of them here.

You Will Receive Treatment

We test you for chlamydia and gonorrhea at no charge in a confidential, judgment-free environment. You might be very surprised if your test results are positive, particularly if you don’t have symptoms. However, treatment of an active infection is still very important. The good news is that both of these infections are treatable.

If you test positive for chlamydia, Willow Womens Center will provide you with a prescription for an antibiotic. If you test positive for gonorrhea, our medical staff will advise you to seek immediate medical attention with a licensed physician.
By law, both of these infections will be reported to the local Public Health Department by the testing lab.

Untreated chlamydia and gonorrhea can cause serious health risks in women particularly. These risks can include infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease, pain, and more, so be sure to protect yourself with prompt treatment.

Contact Partners

If one of your past or current partners tested positive for an STD, would you want to know? How would you feel in the future if you were experiencing side effects of an undiagnosed and untreated STD? How would you feel if you knew that if someone had not withheld information from you about their positive STD results, you would not be facing these problems?

As uncomfortable as the thought sounds, a crucial next step is to contact past and current sexual partners, so they can be tested and treated if necessary. This protects their health and prevents the infection from spreading further. It also prevents the STD from spreading back to you from an infected current partner.

Sometimes, testing positive for an STD stirs up strong reactions and causes relationship conflicts. It is easy for either partner to assume infidelity and mistrust in the other. However, before making assumptions, it is important to remember that STDs can linger for long period of time without symptoms, so someone can have an infection for many years without knowing it. Our licensed medical professionals are available to answer questions and help guide you through these conversations. Here are helpful tips to talk to partners about STDs.

We understand how awkward this step can be, but according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there are 20 million new STD cases each year in the United States, so many people are having these conversations. You can do it too!

Make an Appointment Today

We are committed to providing you compassionate, confidential services at no cost. You will be empowered with accurate facts so you can make informed decisions about your health and pregnancy. You can make an appointment at Willow Womens Center by calling 608-312-2025.

The Importance of STI Screening Even If You Don’t Have Any Symptoms

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are something most of us don’t like to think about. But did you know that you could have an STI without feeling any symptoms? Knowledge is empowering. At Willow Womens Center, our licensed medical professionals provide unbiased information to help you make informed decisions about your health.

Stay Informed

Reported cases of STIs have increased each year since 2001. There are approximately 20 million new STI cases reported each year in the United States alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), even though 15-24-year-olds only make up 25% of the population that are sexually active, they account for approximately 66% of new infections each year. Many of these infections have symptoms that are hardly noticeable or even symptomless. Because of this, it is important to be tested even if you are not aware of any symptoms.

Why STI Screening?

Here are some reasons why the CDC recommends yearly STI screening for chlamydia and gonorrhea for any woman under 25 who is sexually active.

1. If you are sexually active, nothing is 100% effective against STIs.

  • You might be thinking, “But I am in a monogamous relationship.” You might be, but is your partner? The tough reality is that many people contract STIs thinking they were in mutually monogamous relationships.

  • Or, maybe you are thinking, “We use condoms every time.” It’s true that the correct use of condoms reduces the chances of getting an STI, but this is not failsafe.

2. The majority of STIs don’t have any noticeable symptoms.

It is hard to imagine that you can have an infection without symptoms, but that is exactly how hidden most STIs can be!

  • Chlamydia: Chlamydia is nicknamed the “silent” infection since most people don’t notice any symptoms. Untreated chlamydia can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, scar tissue in fallopian tubes, infertility, and future ectopic pregnancies (a pregnancy in a blocked fallopian tube). The good news is that chlamydia is completely curable when it is diagnosed and treated with antibiotics.

  • Gonorrhea: Like chlamydia, most people infected with gonorrhea will not experience any symptoms. Untreated, it can put a person at higher risk of getting HIV and other life-threatening infections in addition to the same risks as untreated chlamydia. Gonorrhea is also curable with antibiotics.

3. There can be serious health risks if STIs are left untreated.

If an STI is left undiagnosed and untreated, it can lead to more people becoming infected, infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), chronic pain, and cancer.

It is very important for a woman’s health to be tested for STIs before an abortion. If a woman has an abortion with an untreated STI, it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), infertility, and pain. For this reason, we screen for chlamydia and gonorrhea when a woman is considering abortion.

No-Cost Services Available

You can make an appointment at Willow Womens Center for our no-cost services by giving us a call at 608-312-2025. We understand the important decisions you are facing. We walk with you every step of the way, so you feel empowered to make a confident decision for your health and your future.

Delavan Pregnancy Services

An Easy Drive from Delavan to Willow Womens Center

The City of Beloit, Wisconsin, is located on the Wisconsin/Illinois state line, just southwest of Delavan. Situated near Interstate 39/90 and the I-43 interchange, the Beloit Welcome Center greets over one million tourists each year. Proud of the strength, beauty, and diversity in their community, Beloit is known for its world-class riverfront, the charming downtown, historic residential neighborhoods, and Beloit College.

Less than half an hour’s drive from Delavan, Wisconsin, 100 miles from downtown Chicago, and 70 miles from Six Flags Great America, Beloit has a population of 36,773 (2017 census), and the greater Beloit area has over 110,000. Originally named New Albany in 1837 by its founder, Caleb Blodgett, it was renamed Beloit a year later and hoped it would be reminiscent of Detroit.

In the 1870s the area had become known for its cigars with more than 100 cigar makers calling it home. Beloit is also famous for the inventions of the speedometer, Korn Kurls, and John Francis Appleby’s twine binder used in the reaping of grain.

No-Cost Pregnancy Services Available

At Willow Womens Center, we offer residents of Delavan pregnancy services, including pre-abortion screening. This type of screening includes a pregnancy test, ultrasound, and testing for STD/STIs. Pregnancy tests and ultrasounds are administered by a licensed medical staff member. An STI screening is done for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea. Testing for other STIs is given a referral.

No matter what town you call home – Delavan, Beloit or somewhere in between – if you are dealing with an unexpected pregnancy, Willow Womens Center is here for you. We place a high value on confidentiality, a non-judgmental environment, and advocates and medical staff who are kind and compassionate.

Come for the Services, Information, Support

Pregnancy tests are most accurate when taken between 28 to 31 days after the first day of your last period and detect the hormone known as hCG. Even if you have taken a home test, we encourage you to come in for a no-cost test to confirm your results.

If your test is positive, an ultrasound can tell you how far along your pregnancy is and if it is viable. If the pregnancy develops outside the uterus, it is called an ectopic pregnancy and requires immediate medical care.

Ultrasounds are also part of pre-abortion screening. About 20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage during the first three months of pregnancy. If a miscarriage is likely to happen, there is no point in having a procedure you may not need. We provide limited ultrasounds for you at no cost so you have all the relevant data you need to make an informed decision.

We also offer limited screening for STD/STIs, which often are present without any symptoms to alert you. If you have ever had unprotected sex, you could be at risk. If you test positive for an STD/STI, we will either give you a prescription or refer you for treatment. Testing and treating an active STD/STI helps to avoid a chronic and painful experience with pelvic inflammatory disease. This is also provided at no cost to you.

No matter whether you live in Beloit or Delavan, Willow Womens Center pregnancy services are right here for you. Call us to schedule an appointment and let our caring advocates and medical staff guide and support you during this difficult time.

STD Testing: Is it Really Necessary?

No one likes to go to the doctor for tests, especially for a sexually transmitted disease (STD). That definitely crosses over into the None-of-Your-Business territory. The thing is, there are no home tests for it, so is STD testing really necessary?

In a word, yes. Yes, yes yes!

Women are less likely to get tested for STDs than men are. And, in case you wondered, STDs don’t discriminate. They don’t care who you are, where you live, how old you are, what color your skin is, or if you’re not currently having sex. If you have had sex once, you’re at risk.

Before you say, “That person didn’t look sick,” you should know that is normal. People with STDs look just like you, like your neighbor, your mom, dad, sister, best friend and anyone else you can think of. The near invisibility of STDs contributes to its spread and less overall concern than if it caused a big rash across your face or stomach. It’s much easier to deny something you can’t see.

Here are the top reasons why women put off STD testing.

You’re In Denial: Thinking there is no way possible you could have an STD is only an option if you’ve never, ever had sex. If you have, then snap out of it. Denial is not your friend and can only lead to chronic pain and infertility problems down the road.

You Have No Symptoms: Saying you have no symptoms is great on one hand, because who wants any? On the other hand, it’s like the perfect way for STDs to lie to you—give you a disease but don’t tell you about it. The thing is, it’s possible to have no symptoms and still have an STD. You can look and feel fine while inside nasty bacteria are doing untold damage. It’s better to know for sure and get treatment if you need it!

You’re Embarrassed: Too embarrassed to get tested? Why? Smart people don’t worry what others think and get tested because staying healthy is important to them.

You Don’t Think It’s Important: Some STDs are not a big deal, but others are and can cause you a lot of trouble—if not now, certainly later. Some STDs can cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) which can result in chronic abdominal pain and infertility–the CDC says 24,000 women with undiagnosed STDs become infertile each year.

You Don’t Know What to Do: We know things can become confusing. To make it easy for you, follow the CDC’s recommendation and get tested for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea. They are the most common, and we can offer you testing for these at Willow Womens Center.

You Don’t Have Insurance: This won’t be a problem for you because we test for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea free of charge.

Make an Appointment

Make an appointment to come into Willow Womens Center today and one of our advocates will determine the need for an STD test! Yes, STD testing really is necessary, but we’ve got you covered and provide the testing for you confidentially and for free. We are committed to making sure women facing an unexpected pregnancy have access to all of the information and resources they need.

Make an Appointment