Whether you are trying to get pregnant, or are concerned you may have fallen pregnant unexpectedly, the only way to answer your questions is to take a pregnancy test. Pregnancy tests are reliable, whether you do them at home or visit your doctor, and provided you follow the instructions and wait the right amount of time after your missed period or ovulation date, the results of a home pregnancy test are at around 97% with tests done by doctors even more reliable, so you can find out one way or another and get some peace of mind.
Pregnancy Tests Guide
Here is everything you need to know about both home and doctors’ office pregnancy tests:
How Do Pregnancy Tests Work?
Pregnancy tests look for the presence of a hormone called human chronionic gonadotropin (hCG) in either the blood or urine of a woman who thinks she might be pregnant. Blood tests are only available from doctors and are not used very often, because urine tests are easier and more reliable. However, a doctor who specializes in information on sexual health may be able to identify pregnancy earlier with a blood test so for women trying to get pregnant who want to know if their efforts have been successful a few days earlier it can be an option if they know their cycles well.
The hCG hormone is produced once the fertilised egg attaches and the woman becomes pregnant. In the majority of cases this happens six days after the egg is fertilised, however there can be some variance. It is present immediately, however it increases in amount very rapidly, meaning it is easier for the pregnancy test to detect it after a few days.
Benefits of Home vs Doctors’ Pregnancy Tests?
A home pregnancy test is better for most people in their first trimester, especially with those with female infertility issues, because they are easy to get hold of, relatively inexpensive, and give almost instant results. It is also more discreet and means you don’t have to wait for an appointment with your doctor and worry about whether or not you are pregnant in the interim. However, you do have to follow the instructions carefully to make sure your results are accurate and you understand them. When a home pregnancy test is wrong it can obviously cause a lot of stress, though this case is rare.
Some women do prefer to have their pregnancy test administered by a doctor. This may be because your doctor is overseeing your efforts to get pregnant, because you want earlier results, or because you simply want the reassurance of having the test handled by a professional. You will, however, have to wait a couple of days to get results in most cases. Another reason why some women choose to see a doctor is if their potential healthy pregnancy is unplanned and they want further medical advice about their options. This can be a big help for people who are considering termination, because it can be discussed with your doctor immediately and the necessary medical and local legal matters can be explained. Women who are worried about hereditary problems that may affect their pregnancy are also often better off seeing a doctor to find out if they are pregnant as their pregnancy may need to be supervised closely.
Jenny Wadlow, the author of this post, is a freelance blogger and a reproductive health expert. Being a mother of two, she has gained a lot of knowledge about pregnancy and likes to blog about it. You can follow her on Twitter @JennyWadlow.