When is the right time to do a pregnancy test?

So you might be thinking that you are heavy with a baby, but you want to be sure. An easy way to do that is to find the best pregnancy test kit that will give you an accurate result.

You know you and your partner have been practicing safe sex, but you are also aware that even with the most effective birth control options, there will always be a chance to make a careless error. After all, it just takes only a single sperm to fertilize an egg. Note that on average, a man releases about 100 million sperm each time he ejaculates. To find out whether it just happened is quite easy when you have an over-the-counter (OTC) pregnancy test device.

These pregnancy test devices usually test a woman’s urine for a pregnancy hormone known as human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). This hormone is released once a fertilized egg attaches outside the uterus or to the uterine lining of a pregnant woman.

Urine that is used for the pregnancy test may be collected in several ways depending on the pregnancy test that you opt to use.

  • You may collect your urine in a cup and dip a testing stick into the urine.
  • You may collect your urine in a cup and transfer a small amount of the fluid into a container in the kit using an eyedropper.
  • You may place the testing stick where you are expecting your urine stream will flow and allow it to catch your urine midstream.

Although most tests are accurate, none of them can be 100% accurate. However, most of these tests will give an accurate result when done after a missed period. One good thing about these pregnancy tests is that you can do it whenever and you wherever you need to, and nobody will ever know until you choose to let them know. There is no complicated instruction to follow. You just need to pop open the packaging, read thoroughly and follow the instructions to the dot. After waiting for the recommended time (it takes only up to about 3 minutes), you can check the result that will show up on the device’ display window. Most of these pregnancy test kits even come with a timer, so you don’t have to guess or keep on looking at the display window to know when it is time to check the result.

The display window of the test device will display one of the following results:

  • a change in color
  • a line
  • plus or minus sign
  • the words “pregnant” or “not pregnant”
  • YES+ / NO-

So, when is the best time to take a pregnancy test?

For the most accurate result, you will have to take a pregnancy test at least two to three days after your missed period. Pregnancy test kits available in the market today usually indicate this in the packaging and/or the instructions.

You can also do the test about one to two weeks after an unprotected intercourse. Note that the pregnancy hormone hCG can be detected in the urine or blood after fertilization, but only about 9 days after fertilization. If a test is taken too early in the cycle, you may get an inaccurate result. There are some home pregnancy tests that claim to detect hCG in as early as 4 days before the expected period, however. Again, you will have to read the product package as well as do a quick search for some reliable reviews about the product.

There are also some observable signs that most women would take to be sure signs of early pregnancy, including the following:

  • A delayed period. It may be difficult to tell if your period is missing in action if you are not used to tracking your menstruation, however. The normal menstrual cycle for most women is 28 days. Though there may be other reasons for your menstruation to be delayed. However, if your period has not come for more than a month, you should be taking a pregnancy test.
  • You constantly experience cramps. This will be a common concern, especially during the early phase of your pregnancy. If you observe that you are experiencing cramps constantly, take a pregnancy test.
  • You have swollen breasts. As your pregnancy progresses, your body produces more estrogen and progesterone that can cause changes to your body to support the growth of your baby. This will also cause your breasts to grow in size and feel tender. Your areola will take on a darker tone as more blood rush towards the skin and fill the veins under it.
  • Nausea, food aversion, exhaustion, frequent urination will be common concerns if you are pregnant. These symptoms will get stronger during the first trimester of pregnancy. If you experience any of these pregnancy symptoms, you need to take a test.

Take note, however, that these symptoms may also be caused by other health concerns. If you get negative results even with repeated tests, make sure to consult a doctor right away for a better prognosis.

It’s best to take the pregnancy test during your first-morning bathroom visit as this is the time when there is a higher concentration of the hCG hormone. Testing early will ensure that you get the proper care for yourself and your baby. If you get a positive result, you should set an appointment with an Ob-Gyne who can verify your pregnancy and possibly advise you the things that you need to do to ensure a healthy pregnancy.

Have you considered taking a pregnancy yet? What kind of test did you take? How did it go?

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