A pregnancy test kit is an easy do-it-yourself-method to confirm pregnancy. When should you use a pregnancy test? Are you using it the right way? How do you interpret the results? If you have these questions, read ahead to get all your answers!
What is a pregnancy test?
A pregnancy kit usually comprises of a standard pregnancy stick test which may come with a small container or dropper depending on the brand purchased.
A pregnancy test detects the presence of human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (hCG), also known as the pregnancy hormone, which is found in the urine of a pregnant woman.
When do you need a pregnancy test kit?
“Missing your period, experiencing cramps, nausea and a feeling of fullness in your breasts or tingling in them could be signs of pregnancy” says Dr. Anita Sabherwal, Consultant Obstetrician, Sitaram Bhartia Hospital in South Delhi.
“You can use a pregnancy test kit at home to determine whether you’re pregnant.”
Pregnancy Test: Are You Using it Right?
The pregnancy test kit should be used as per the instructions in the kit itself.
Keep in mind these tips to get accurate results:
- Take the test 2 to 3 days after missed periods to ensure reliable results
- If you take the test too early, you may get a ‘false’ negative result.
- Take the pregnancy test in the morning using the morning urine sample.
- If you have a dropper at hand, use it to add the urine dropwise in the marked pit of the pregnancy test to prevent overloading the pregnancy test.
Pregnancy Test Kit Results
If your pregnancy test shows two lines, it means that you are pregnant.
The symbols may differ depending on the pregnancy test used.
“A positive result on a pregnancy test kit is mostly reliable,” says Dr. Anita.
Once you are pregnant, you may have to make modifications to your lifestyle. Read our Essential Guide for Managing Pregnancy Lifestyle Changes to know what changes to make.
In a few cases, the test kit may give erroneous results.
“In such situations, you could be pregnant even if the result is negative. The kit may not have picked up a delayed conception. “
A delayed conception could occur with women who are prone to delayed or irregular periods.
“If you have irregular periods, a pregnancy test kit may not show a positive result for two to three weeks after the missed period, ” says Dr. Anita.
“If your first test comes back negative, you may need to take one again.”
Consider visiting your gynecologist
- If the result is a faint line because this is not a negative result
- If you have missed a period and feel anxious despite a negative test kit result
- In case of any confusion in interpreting the pregnancy test result
“Your doctor may order a Serum Beta HCG blood test to confirm your pregnancy” concludes Dr Anita.
This article has been written with Dr. Anita Sabherwal Anand, Consultant, Obstetrician-Gynecologist at Sitaram Bhartia Hospital in South Delhi. Dr. Anita is a highly qualified gynecologist with 20+ years of experience who is trusted by low-risk and high-risk mothers alike for her guidance on having a healthy pregnancy and delivery.
Seek expert advice from our expert gynaecologist at our hospital located in South Delhi. Come in for an in-person consultation or book a tele-consult. Please call on +91 9871001458 to schedule your appointment.
Also Read: How to Deal with an Unwanted Pregnancy