Are you trying to conceive? Are you wondering if you are pregnant? The easiest way to find out is by taking a pregnancy test. There are two ways to test for pregnancy: a blood test and urine test. A blood test can detect pregnancy about six to eight days after ovulation but it takes longer to get the results and is usually conducted at a doctor’s office. Therefore, urine pregnancy tests are used by most women because they are readily available at grocery stores and drug stores.

Pregnancy Tests

A pregnancy test measures the amount of hCG or pregnancy hormone that appears during pregnancy. This hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is produced and released into the body about a week after a fertilized egg attaches to the wall of a woman’s uterus. If you’re pregnant, the levels of hCG continue to grow, doubling every two to three days.

Timing

Many women wait about a week after their missed period to take a pregnancy test, but some tests can be taken earlier than that. You can take one before your missed period and one after. It is usually best to take the test first thing in the morning when your urine is more concentrated. This way your urine won’t be too diluted to detect faint traces of hCG.

Accuracy

The accuracy of your pregnancy test depends on several factors, including how closely you follow instructions, the sensitivity of the test, and when you take it. Typically, if you get a positive result, you’re pregnant even if the line is faint. But in some rare cases, you could get a false positive if there’s blood or protein in your urine or if you are taking certain medications. Most tests are 97-99% accurate.

Early Pregnancy Signs

  • More emotional
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Constipation
  • Breast soreness or swelling
  • Spotting before regular period

If you have questions about whether or not you are pregnant always contact your healthcare provider.

For helpful pregnancy tips check out Newborn 101.

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