Missing your monthly period is usually the first indicator of pregnancy but for women with irregular cycles or women on birth control, using a missed period as a pregnancy indicator can be misleading. Confirming your pregnancy suspicions with a test is the only way to know for sure.
When it comes to pregnancy tests, women have two options: urine or blood tests. Below, we’ll explore how these tests work and the best time to take a pregnancy test.
How Does a Pregnancy Test Work?
Both blood and urine pregnancy tests detect a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). HCG, the pregnancy hormone, is produced primarily by cells in the placenta after conception has occurred.
The levels of hCG steadily rise as the pregnancy grows, doubling about every 48 hours.
Urine pregnancy tests are the most commonly used today as they are easily accessible and affordable. Urine tests can detect pregnancy with 97% accuracy when taken a day or two after your missed period.
Most urine tests only take about a minute or two to produce the results.
Blood tests are highly accurate but can only be taken in a clinic or doctor’s office. While blood pregnancy tests are not as easily accessible, they can produce results as early as 7 days after conception. Women can have their pregnancy suspicions confirmed sooner with a blood test than a standard urine test.
Blood tests also detect hCG levels and will either produce a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ result or a numerical level of hCG. Your doctor can tell by how much hCG is present in your blood if you’re pregnant or not.
Why You Should Confirm Your Pregnancy
As mentioned above, keeping track of early pregnancy signs like exhaustion or nausea can be helpful but are not always accurate.
If you’ve recently had sex and are experiencing sore breasts, nausea, and exhaustion, you might be pregnant. Confirming your symptoms with a pregnancy test is the right next step.
At Pregnancy Options, women can get a no-cost pregnancy confirmation test in a safe and judgment-free environment. If your results are positive, our staff can help you explore the options available as you seek to choose what’s best for your future.
Give us a call and make an appointment at your convenience. You’re heard and highly valued at Pregnancy Options.