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Support for teenage pregnancy

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Partners, family and friends can be a great source of support to pregnant teenagers and young mums. But sometimes you need a little more, whether it’s health information or just needing to talk to someone who knows what you’re going through. Extra support services are available for young mums and mums-to-be, often on a local level. You just need to know where to look.

Help and Advice

Many young women who think they might be pregnant, initially look for help and advice outside of their close family and friends. If you’re in this situation then the Worth Talking About helpline – 0300 123 2930 – offers confidential advice on everything from taking a pregnancy test to your relationship with the baby’s father. Alternatively, Brook centres offer help and advice to people under the age of 25. There are centres around the country operating a ‘drop-in’ system so you don’t need to make an appointment.

Midwives and Health Visitors

During your pregnancy your midwife will probably be your first port of call for any questions or concerns you might have. After your baby is born this role will fall onto your Health Visitor. As well as looking after the health of you and your baby, these health professionals are there to help with your emotional wellbeing too. They will be able to give you information on groups you may be interested in as well as information on local services available in your area.

The Young Woman’s Guide to Pregnancy

Written specifically for women under the age of 20, this book is produced by the charity Tommy’s and is available free to pregnant women aged between 16 and 19 through the charity’s website. As well as all the usual advice about eating healthily, antenatal care and giving birth, this 96-page book contains real-life experiences and stories from other young mums. It is definitely worth having a look at and makes a great starting point for answering the many questions you’re bound to have.

Housing

support for teenage pregnancyMany young parents choose to stay with their families after the baby is born but for some this isn’t an option. If you are concerned about where you might live after the birth then contact your local authority as early as possible and you may be offered accommodation for you and your baby. Some local authorities even have special housing for young parents where you can have all the independence you like but still have support from trained workers if you need or want it.

Education

Giving birth doesn’t have to mean the end of your education. If you’re under the school leaving age then your school can’t force you to quit and must allow you up to 18 weeks off around the time of the birth, a bit like maternity leave. However, if pregnancy-related health issues mean your education is being affected, the school might talk to you about making alternative arrangements for your schooling. When you return to school or college after the birth you will be entitled to Care to Learn funding, which contributes towards the cost of childcare while you learn. Mothers above the compulsory leaving age can also claim, as long as they are returning to education and are under the age of 20 when starting the course.

 

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About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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