You must be extra careful and sure while confirming your pregnancy. Sometimes, a few symptoms may lead one to believe that a baby is on the way. However, more often than not, it may not be the case.
There are various forms and modes of tests to conduct to confirm your delight. The first thing to give you an indication are symptoms. Most basic symptoms are as follows:
- A missed period
- Swollen breasts
- Frequent urination
If you experience any of these symptoms, especially a missed period, it’s time to take a pregnancy test.
How do pregnancy tests work?
You can use a lot of different ways to determine your pregnancy. Home tests are just as effective as clinical tests. Nevertheless, you need to consult a doctor to be sure. Prepare yourself for a false positive or a false negative during this journey.
A pregnancy test indicates the measure of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone, found in the placenta of a woman’s womb. This hormone is made after a fertilized egg attaches itself to the wall of the uterus. The existence of this hormone proves your pregnancy.
Types of pregnancy tests
There are primarily two types of tests- blood and urine. In both the tests, the search is for the hCG hormone and can be taken at home or in a clinic. Let’s have a look at both of these types in association with home and clinical pregnancy tests.
Home Pregnancy Tests
Home pregnancy tests determine pregnancy by checking urine or you can order blood tests online.
The kit contains a chemical strip that is required to be peed on. After that, the woman must wait for as long as it is mentioned on the box.
According to the majority of the manufacturers, pregnancy strips are about 99% accurate, given that the instructions are followed correctly. Here are some things to take care of while using home pregnancy tests-
- Though hCG levels can be detected in urine ten days post conception, it’s advisable to conduct the test after your period is five to ten days late. If you hurry too much, it might indicate a false negative.
- Wait for the recommended time after urinating on the strip, and read the instructions carefully since they differ from brand to brand.
- Urine must be in your body for at least four hours before it can determine hormone levels. Try to use your first urine of the day since it stays the longest in your body overnight.
- Avoid the consumption of excess water before the test. It might dilute the levels of the hCG hormone.
Home pregnancy tests are convenient since you can conduct them in the privacy of your bathroom, and it gives you accurate results.
Several clinics offer blood tests at home. You have a choice to send a sample on your own or have a nurse come to your house and get it. Blood tests are more sensitive than urine tests.
There are some homemade tests as well that are effective using salt, sugar, baking soda, wine, and a lot more. However, do your research before using them and do consult a doctor for absolute surety while conducting any kind of home pregnancy test.
Clinical Pregnancy Tests
Clinics generally provide the option of both urine and blood tests. The process of urine testing is the same as the home pregnancy kits. You have to submit a sample of your urine and wait for the results.
Blood tests are rarely used in routine testing as they are not economical and urine tests are just as effective. However, they do have the advantage of being accurate even in the early stages of pregnancy. They indicate even the slightest measure of the hCG hormone, within ten to twelve days of conception.
They are usually used by doctors in exceptional cases such as doubt of infertility. The test time varies from a few hours to even a day after collecting the blood sample.
There are two types of blood test-
- Qualitative hCG blood test:
This test determines if your body has the hCG hormone.
- Quantitative hCG blood test:
This test determines the amount of hCG present in your body. This is helpful to doctors and patients in figuring out the timeline of pregnancy as the quantity is directly proportional to the time of pregnancy.
Doctors might recommend a quantitative test if the levels of hormone found are unexpected.
For quantitative tests (blood or urine), ELISA immunoassay kits are also available and can be ordered online. These tests are primarily used to detect proteins and hormones in the body, using chemicals and system components. The kit is already laced with chemicals required to detect pregnancy, only blood or urine specimens are required.
In a nutshell, urine and blood tests at home or a clinic- are all equally adequate in determining your pregnancy. It’s all about your convenience. You must always consult a doctor before making up your mind in any direction to avoid bad experiences.