How to Do Pregnancy Test at Home
If there's a possibility that you're pregnant, we know it must be playing on your mind and you'll want to find out as soon as possible. Taking an at-home pregnancy test gives you the privacy of doing it on your own, instead of going to see a doctor. It's quick and easy to do but there are some things you need to be aware of before taking it.
In this post, we provide you with everything you need to know about doing an at-home pregnancy test as well as information about ovulation and fertility.
Instant Pregnancy Test
Our instant pregnancy test is perfect for detecting human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in urine and can detect pregnancy with very high accuracy. If you have been trying to get pregnant, and you have reason to think you may be, you need to take this test.
If you have been trying to conceive for a while, you need to know whether you have had success, and this is why it is important to take an accurate pregnancy test. You need to be clear about the best ways of being able to test for this, and hCG is one of the best indicators that you might be pregnant.
How to do a pregnancy test
It's quick and easy to take an at-home pregnancy test so there's nothing to worry about. Always read the instructions as the timings or use may slightly differ between pregnancy tests. But, here are some general instructions on how to take a pregnancy test.
- Point the absorbent tip directly into your urine stream
- Take the sample for around 7-10 seconds to ensure an adequate sample is collected
- Alternatively, collect a urine sample in a container and dip half the absorbent tip into it for around 10 seconds
- In most cases, you will need to wait around 3 minutes for your result so try not to look at it too early as the test may still be developing and result in you seeing an unclear indication
- Your test will have a control window or digital screen to tell you whether the test is negative or positive
- Check your instructions to make sure you have read the test correctly
The best time to take a pregnancy test
Many women think they can take a pregnancy test anytime and it will give them accurate results, well this is incorrect. There is a best time to take a pregnancy test, so you get a true result. If you have missed a period or had unprotected sex, it's best to wait 21 days after you last had unprotected sex for an accurate result.
Pregnancy tests check whether you have hCG hormone in your urine which is only present during pregnancy but it can take a while for this hormone to show on a test. Some very sensitive pregnancy tests can be taken a little earlier, but to be sure, it's better to wait as doing a test too soon could result in a false positive.
A common myth is that it's best to do a pregnancy test in the morning, but it doesn't matter at what time of day you take a pregnancy test. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully and leave the pregnancy test for the amount of time it says on the instructions for a clear result.
Is it possible to get an incorrect pregnancy test result?
Incorrect pregnancy test results are rare but they are possible with at-home pregnancy tests. In some cases of false positive pregnancy test results, the woman may have experienced a pregnancy loss not long after the egg was fertilised, or you may get a false positive result if you have recently had fertility treatment. Otherwise, getting a positive test is usually accurate as it detects a hormone in your body that is only present during pregnancy.
Getting a false positive is also rare, but can happen with an at-home pregnancy test. If you take the test too early or if you look at the test before the time on the instructions tell you to leave it. Some think that taking a pregnancy test later on in the day can result in a false negative result but there is no evidence to support this.
Struggling to get pregnant?
There are many reasons why a woman is struggling to conceive, but it's important to note that most women get pregnant within a year of trying regularly. If you're struggling to get pregnant, it doesn't necessarily mean there is something serious happening, as everyone is different and it can take a while to happen. In this section, we will discuss some of the reasons why and what you can do about it.
Track your ovulation
Ovulation usually happens midway through your 28-day menstrual cycle when the increasing presence of LH (Luteinizing Hormone) causes your ovary to release an egg ready for fertilisation.
This egg is only viable for around 24 hours after release, however, sperm can live in the female reproductive system for up to 5 days, so from 5 days before your ovulation date, you can start having unprotected sex to maximise your chances of pregnancy.
Generally speaking, if you have a regular cycle then it’s highly likely you also have regular ovulation. However, it’s perfectly normal for people with regular cycles to still have a few days difference on their cycle each month, everyone is different.
If you don’t have a period at all, then you won’t be ovulating, but, you can have a period as normal and not ovulate, which is why it’s important to look out for symptoms of ovulation. Here are just some of the symptoms to look out for:
- Rise in Basal Body Temperature (BBT)
- Surge in Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
- Egg-white-like vaginal discharge
- Increased sex drive
- Mild pelvic pain
Not all women will experience all of these symptoms, however, since there are no symptoms when you're not ovulating you should look out when you don't experience these symptoms too.
Getting an instant ovulation test is the easier way to find out if you're ovulating. These tests work by testing the presence of LH and a positive result means you're ovulating, therefore negative results show no signs of ovulation. Tracking your ovulation is one way to know if you're fertile enough to get pregnant.
Why aren't I ovulating?
There are many reasons why you're not ovulating and if you're worried, always speak to a medical, professional. If you're tracking your ovulation and find that within your usual cycle or within a 28-day window that you're not ovulating it could be for one of these reasons.
- Weight- The ideal weight for contraception varies from person to person but a healthy BMI (body max index) is between 18.5 and 24.9. You can calculate your BMI by dividing your weight in kilograms (kg) by your height in metres (m) squared.
Stress- Prolonged stress can impact the body in a negative way, and that includes your cycle. Plus, if you're already feeling stress and anxiety over not conceiving, that can add to the problem. On top of that, if you have money worries or a stressful job or home life, these factors can play a part in you not ovulating.
- Ovulation disorders- An ovulation disorder needs to be diagnosed by a doctor, so if you think you have a disorder, make sure you seek advice from your GP. One of the main ovulation disorders is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome and this disorder disrupts ovulation by causing irregular periods, increased androgen, enlarged ovaries, and increased number of follicles they contain. Having an ovulation syndrome doesn't necessarily lead to infertility.
Low fertility in Males
If you and your partner are struggling to conceive, it's important that both of you get checked out. Hopefully, there are no complications and it's just taking a little longer than usual, but if there is something to be aware of, it's better to know early then you can get the right treatment and support.
Symptoms of low fertility in males
It can be difficult to know if your partner has low fertility because the signs aren't as obvious as they can be in females, however, there are tests available such as our Instant Male Fertility Test. Here are some of the symptoms of low male fertility:
- Erectile dysfunction or difficulties keeping an erection
- Reduced libido or sex drive
- Testicular discomfort or inflammation
- Problems with ejaculation, such as early retrograde ejaculation
- Decreased facial or body hair, or other signs of hormonal imbalance.
These symptoms alone don't diagnose male infertility or low fertility so take one of our tests and visit a doctor for peace of mind.
Now you know everything there is to know about doing an at-home pregnancy test, you will be able to do the test and get the most accurate result you can. If you're struggling to get pregnant, try our ovulation or fertility tests to get started.