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How Soon Will a Pregnancy Test Read Positive?

By MomMed | 27 July 2022 | 0 Comments

Have you been wondering how soon you are able to test for pregnancy with a home pregnancy test? Many women ask how soon a pregnancy test can read positive if they are indeed pregnant. It’s an important question, especially if you are trying to conceive and are anxious to find out if the wait is over!

How a home pregnancy test detects a pregnancy.

A home pregnancy test is able to detect a pregnancy by testing for hCG, a hormone that is only produced during pregnancy. HCG starts being produced in the body when the fertilized egg implants itself into the uterus. This typically happens about 10 days after conception. Once implantation occurs, hCG should build up rapidly, doubling about every two days in early pregnancy.

Home pregnancy tests are affordable and easy to use. Whether you choose a test that requires you to collect your urine first, or a midstream test that can be held under the urine stream directly, they will detect the presence of hCG with a high level of accuracy once.

How soon can a pregnancy test read positive?

Because a home pregnancy test is used to detect hCG in the urine, you will not be able to get a positive test until after implantation has occurred. Early detection tests that have a higher sensitivity to hCG may be able to give you a positive as early as 10 days after conception, or up to 5 days before your expected period.

Because every pregnancy is different and there is a wide range of healthy hCG levels in early pregnancy, some pregnancies will not be detected with a home pregnancy test until after a missed period. If you have taken a pregnancy test before your missed period and it is negative, you should wait a couple of days and try again.

Does it ever take longer than expected for a test to read positive?

Every now and then, because of low hCG levels or irregular cycles, a home pregnancy test might not detect a pregnancy until a week or so after your expected period. If you have missed your period and are still seeing negative tests, you may need to call your care provider to explore your options.

There are a number of reasons why your period may be delayed, and if you are trying to conceive it is important to understand your cycles. Blood tests and transvaginal ultrasounds are tools that can be used to detect early pregnancy if you feel that your home test results are inconclusive.


Does testing first thing in the morning help get an earlier positive result?

If you have not voided throughout the night, hCG levels can be more concentrated in your first morning urine. This could help you see a positive result sooner, as the test has a more concentrated sample to detect. If you are testing before your missed period with an early detection test, try to test first thing in the morning. If you don’t remember to test first thing in the morning, you may simply want to wait another day or test at another time.

How to cope with the wait.

Waiting to take a pregnancy test can be difficult, especially when you are trying to conceive. Try to remind yourself that your body needs time to produce hCG before you will be able to get a positive result.

If you can, plan some enjoyable activities in the days prior to when you will be able to test to help with the wait. You can also get a few extra tests to have on hand in case your curiosity gets the better of you. That way, if you test too early and get a negative test, you will be able to try again a few days later without having to run to the store at the last minute.

What is the next step once you get a positive test?

If you get a positive pregnancy test, even an early one, you should contact your care provider to see when they would like to schedule your first appointment. If you are not already taking a prenatal vitamin, this is also a good time to start one.

If you have a history of pregnancy losses or have received fertility treatments, your provider may want to schedule you a blood test to measure the exact levels of hCG in your blood. This can help track the progress of your early pregnancy before ultrasounds are able to be used.
Hopefully, you now have a good understanding of how soon a pregnancy test will read positive in the event of a pregnancy. Seeing a negative test can be disappointing and confusing if you are trying to conceive. Waiting until the test is more likely to be accurate, 10-14 days after conception, is advisable.

If you simply cannot wait until after your missed period to test, make sure to have a few extra tests on hand so that you can test again after a couple of days. It is also a good idea to make sure that you use early detection tests if you are trying to get the earliest possible positive!

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