We are all aware that there are many pregnancies that are unplanned and a surprise to the couple. Living in a modern era where we are able to control and plan so many situations, pregnancy seems to be another event that could be planned. So is it better to plan a pregnancy?

Let’s consider a surprise pregnancy. It is unexpected so you haven’t had the time to think about how it can affect your life in terms of finances, lifestyle and emotions. You’re suddenly thrown into a whirlwind of decision making. If you don’t have medical aid, then it’s too late to get cover for your current condition. You’ll need to make financial decisions based on the doctor visits as well as hospitalisation for the birth. Budgeting will need to be done for the baby items you’ll need. As much of a happy surprise that it may be, it can be challenging if you are unprepared.

It is better to plan ahead for a pregnancy. That being said, the exact date for conception and birth cannot be determined exactly, but the time frame will help guide you. Let’s say that you intend to have a baby next year. The first thing you need to do is visit your gynaecologist or fertility doctor to run a few tests and check that everything is good with your reproductive system. You will also stop taking the contraception. Keep in mind, that depending on which contraceptive method you’re on, it will take some time for your body’s reproductive system to regulate. Actually, before this stage you need to ensure that you are on a suitable medical aid. If you are on a new medical aid, check that you know what the waiting period is before cover starts for a pregnancy. Make sure that it covers everything that you require from the moment you find out you’re pregnant until the birth.

Also check if the hospitalisation during the birth will cover anything that may go wrong. You don’t want to think about anything going wrong but it is reassuring to know that you have cover and that everything will be OK. The most important part is to know that you will get the best care during this magical time. Because you are planning ahead, you can start saving for the baby furniture, clothing and other necessary items. Save a set amount every month in a separate account. When you see a baby item that you need, you will be able to buy it with ease. A savings account is also a good idea if you are planning for IVF. Fertility treatments are not usually covered by medical aid, so you will need a nest egg for this purpose.

Being prepared for a pregnancy takes away a lot of the stress and uncertainty. It makes this time magical and fun for the both of you. It also makes your fertility doctor or gynaecologist visits much more relaxed because there’s less financial pressure.