When is the Right Time to Take a Pregnancy Test?
Trying to get pregnant can be an extremely stressful time in your life, especially during the two weeks following ovulation. You will always be wondering whether or not you are pregnant, leaving many women desperate for answers as soon as possible. Of course, this is a challenge because most pregnancy tests are accurate only after your usual menstruation cycle has passed. In fact, if you wait until this point in your cycle, you will likely receive positive results from more tests if you are pregnant.
If you’re like most women, you don’t want to wait until you have a late period to see whether or not you’re pregnant. By considering the factors below, you can best determine the right time to take a pregnancy test.
Considerations Regarding Your Ovulation, Conception, and Implantation
No two women are alike when it comes to ovulation, conception, and implantation. Most women wrongly believe that implantation always occurs 7 days after conception. However, research shows that hCG, a pregnancy hormone that will appear after implantation, manifests 6 to 12 days following ovulation. 84 percent of these pregnancies show implantation as occurring 8 to 10 days after ovulation, challenging the idea that 7 days is the norm. So, if you receive a negative pregnancy test, it might not mean that you aren’t pregnant. Rather, it shows that you might be ovulating later, meaning that conception and hCG production are going to appear later as well. Another possibility is that implantation is simply taking longer than the average period of time.
Pregnancy Test Sensitivity
As you can imagine, the sensitivity of all of the pregnancy tests on the market today can vary quite significantly. Extremely sensitive tests will clearly be more accurate at detecting pregnancy before others that aren’t quite as sensitive. As a rule of thumb, tests that can pick up lower levels of hCG are considered to be the most sensitive. For example, consider the Aimstrip Pregnancy Test versus the Walgreens Cassette Pregnancy Test. The Aimstrip test detects pregnancy at 20 mIU of hCG whereas the Walgreens brand test requires 50 mIU of hCG to make a positive pregnancy determination.
In simpler terms, you could expect the Aimstrip test to detect pregnancy anywhere from 8 to 10 days following ovulation, although women who are able to obtain a positive determination this early are very few. However, there are many more women who will have a positive pregnancy result 10 to 12 days after ovulation. Sensitive pregnancy tests will allow you to test earlier and find out if you are more quickly than the less sensitive varieties.
Issues With Sensitive Tests to Detect Early Pregnancies
While sensitive pregnancy tests, that require only 10 to 20 mIU of hCG to give a positive pregnancy test result, seem like a good thing, there is one potential problem.
Statistics show that 25 percent of all pregnancies end in an early miscarriage. An early miscarriage is one that occurs right before your period starts. If you had waited to test until your period was due, you wouldn’t have even been aware that you were pregnant and wouldn’t have had to deal the the soul crushing sadness that comes from the emotional rollercoaster of a pregnancy loss.
If you have an accurate sense of your menstrual cycle and are ready to accept the emotional repercussions of a potential miscarriage, you can take a sensitive pregnancy test that can detect hCG levels at 10 to 20 mIU just 8 to 10 days following ovulation.