When You Should Take A Pregnancy Test
You should wait to take a pregnancy test until the week after your missed period for the most accurate result.
If you don’t want to wait until you’ve missed your period, you should wait at least one to two weeks after you had sex. If you are pregnant, your body needs time to develop detectable levels of HCG. This typically takes seven to 12 days after successful implantation of an egg.
You may receive an inaccurate result if the test is taken too early in your cycle.
Here are some signs that you should take a pregnancy test.
1. You’ve missed your period
If you don’t track your cycle closely, it might be hard to determine whether or not you’re late. Many women have a 28-day menstrual cycle. Consider taking a test if it’s been more than a month since your last period.
2. You have cramps
Implantation can also produce a feeling similar to menstrual cramps. In early pregnancy, you may feel this discomfort and think your period is just around the corner, but then it never comes.
Sound familiar? Take a test. Hormone levels vary by woman and by pregnancy.
3. Your breasts hurt
As your pregnancy produces more and more estrogen and progesterone, these hormones start to make changes in your body to support the baby’s growth.
Your breasts may feel tender and appear bigger due to increased blood flow. Your nipples might hurt and the veins might look darker under the skin. Because many women also experience breast discomfort in the days leading up to their period, this symptom isn’t always indicative of pregnancy.
4. You’re feeling different
Along with cramps and sore breasts, early pregnancy can cause:
- food aversions
- frequent urination
As the weeks go on, these symptoms may get stronger before your HCG levels even out late in the first trimester. You know yourself, so pay attention to your body. Any unusual physical symptoms could prompt you to take a pregnancy test.
5. Your contraception failed
Birth control pills, condoms, and other types of contraceptive devices don’t provide 100 percent protection from pregnancy. In other words, there’s always a slight chance of pregnancy, no matter how careful you are.