Is A Pregnancy Test Accurate At Night?
Is A Pregnancy Test Accurate At Night?
Couples trying to get pregnant experience a roller-coaster of emotions. Anxiety, excitement, hope, and disappointment are always in the loop. It is understandable that taking a test a few days from intercourse becomes very tempting.
Moreover, if the slightest of pregnancy symptoms are felt, it is almost irresistible to not take a test. However, can a test taken at any point in time in a day be trusted? Will it give accurate results? What are the factors one needs to consider to get a pregnancy test accurate?
These questions are often not asked leading to the inaccuracy of results and added worries. To help you have a smooth journey to pregnancy, we have explained everything you need to know about deciding the time to take a pregnancy test.
How Does A Pregnancy Test Work?
A pregnancy test works by determining the amount of Hcg( Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) in your blood and urine. When you take a pregnancy test at home, the level of Hcg in urine is detected. The test strips are allowed to absorb the urine for about 3-5 secs after which they are left for about 10 minutes to read the level of Hcg and display the results. A single line means you are not pregnant, while a double line indicates that you have tested positive for pregnancy.
When To Test?
To understand the right time to take a pregnancy test, it is essential to shed light on the process of getting pregnant. What happens inside the body will most accurately tell you about the time your pregnancy will get manifested on the test strips or reports. Couples trying to get pregnant are advised to have intercourse, every other day during the 5 days preceding ovulation and on the day of ovulation.
That is the fertile window. When the sperm waits in the fallopian tube for the egg, fertilization is most likely to occur post ovulation. But that doesn’t mean you will get pregnant right away. The fertilized egg travels down the fallopian tube, dividing on its way to form a multi-celled embryo. The embryo then gets implanted in the wall of the uterus.
This process takes about 8-10 days. From the outer layer of cells of the embryo, the placenta is formed which secretes Hcg in order to maintain the inner uterine lining. Initially, the amount of Hcg is very low. For about four weeks, the amount doubles every couple of days. It is this rise in hormone in the blood and urine that is used as a basis for pregnancy tests. Therefore, it is important for the hormone to accumulate in amounts that can be detected by the tests.
Hence, the best time to take a test is after 2-3 weeks of intercourse. To get a pregnancy test accurate, the most preferred time is a day after your missed period. If you get a positive pregnancy test result, then you are most probably pregnant. You should, however, get a blood test and ultrasound done for confirmation. If you experience pregnancy symptoms but get a negative result, then it's better to take another test or consult your doctor to get clarity.
If you are taking a pregnancy test at home, then you will most likely be instructed to go for it in the morning, with the first urine of the day. It is because the urine in the morning is concentrated with Hcg. This will make it easier for the strip to detect the level and display accurate results. Fluid intake over the course of time in a day is believed to dilute the Hg in the urine.
If you are taking a pregnancy test just a few days after you have missed your period, then it implies that you are still in the early stages of pregnancy. The Hcg levels will be high enough to be detected, they cannot overcome the effects of dilution. This might result in the appearance of a false negative result.
Can I Take A Test At Night?
Though it is advised to take the test in the morning, taking a pregnancy test at night is not forbidden. You can take a test at any other part of the day too. However, there are chances that sometimes, you might not get a positive pregnancy test result even if you are pregnant just because Hcg levels in your urine are too diluted to be detected by the test strips.
To get a pregnancy test accurate in a test taken at a time other than the morning, it is imperative to keep certain things in mind. Avoid consuming caffeine or foods with added salt and sugar. Drink plenty of water and before about 6 hours of taking the test, do not intake any fluid. There are chances that this will give you an accurate test result.
However, if you get a negative result and feel that you might be pregnant, then it's better to take another test the next morning. Nevertheless, in cases where women are a little far along in their pregnancy and Hcg levels are high enough, a test at night can give a positive result.
Detecting pregnancy through blood tests, however does not depend on the time. Whether the test is taken during the day or night, the result will not vary.
It takes multiple tests before you conclude that you are pregnant. Most at-home pregnancy tests are 99% accurate. However, if the guidelines in the manual are not followed properly, the chances of getting a pregnancy test accurate decreases.
A false negative is very common. But it is important to note that a false-positive result can also appear, even though it’s rare. This happens mostly due to the presence of a tumor, some medications, and Hcg infusion as a part of infertility treatment.
Sometimes, a false positive can be a result of an early miscarriage. Therefore, though a positive result means that you are most likely pregnant, never forget to follow it up with a complete medical check-up for confirmation.