Trying to Conceive Clinic
Am I Pregnant?
Pregnancy test basics
Most women prefer to run their own pregnancy test at home before going to a GP to get their suspicions confirmed. Those who have been trying to get pregnant for a few months, however, can become obsessed with home test kits as expectation turns into delight or disappointment month after month.
What is a pregnancy test kit?
A pregnancy test kit is a small unit that can give you a ‘pregnant’ or ‘not pregnant’ reading within minutes, based on a sample of your urine.
You simply pass water over the test stick, slip it into the test kit reader and wait for the result. The kit looks for presence of a pregnancy hormone called hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin).
Although you do not need to take the test with the first urine sample of your waking day, this does tend to contain the highest level of hCG if it is present at all, so the reading may be more accurate.
Do pregnancy home test kits work?
Most pregnancy test kits are more than 99% accurate these days. However different kits will be able to detect greater or lesser levels of hCG – this will determine how early the instructions advise you to run a test that will be conclusive.
Some might advise you to wait up to a week after your regular period is due – this allows a good amount of time for the hCG to build up in your system for a conclusive result. However, kits like First Response can give results based on lower levels of hCG and can in many cases offer results up to six days before your next period is due, and kits like Clearblue claim 99% accuracy if the test is done on the first day your period would usually be due.
Pregnancy test overload
Most pregnancy test kits are not particularly cheap. Women who have been trying for a few months can get into a habit of testing themselves three times through a month in the hope of an early positive result after intercourse. As the results may be vague or inconclusive, it is much better to wait until your period is due each month, no matter how tough that wait can be.
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