Pregnancy tests work by detecting human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), also called the “pregnancy hormone,” in your body.
Worried that you may be pregnant? Read this article to understand how pregnancy tests work, how to know if the pregnancy test is reliable, and how to determine when to take one.
Choosing a Pregnancy Test
Do I Need a Blood Test or Urine Test to Know If I’m Pregnant?
Both tests can give you highly accurate results; however, a blood test can detect HCG earlier than a urine test. Blood tests must be conducted at a doctor’s office, and you may have to wait a while for results from a lab.
Urine pregnancy tests contain a reactive strip that can detect HCG if there is a high enough amount in your body. This provides a result within minutes.
Could a Home Pregnancy Test Be Wrong?
Over-the-counter pregnancy tests are often a woman’s first step if she believes she might be pregnant. It’s important to ensure that the test is not expired and that you follow the manufacturer’s directions closely.
They are accurate, but it is possible to get a false negative.
Taking a Pregnancy Test
How Soon After Unprotected Sex Can I Take a Home Pregnancy Test?
Your body takes time to produce detectable levels of HCG, so testing immediately after intercourse will not give reliable results.
It’s recommended that you wait up to a week after a missed period before you take the test for accurate results.
Should I Take More Than One Pregnancy Test?
If you think you are pregnant but your first test was negative, you may want to take a follow-up test a few days later. At Waterleaf, we provide free lab-quality pregnancy testing, whether it’s your first test or a follow-up.
Should I Get an Ultrasound?
It’s possible to have a positive pregnancy test without having a progressing pregnancy, so confirmation with an ultrasound is important.
If your result is positive, Waterleaf offers no-cost ultrasounds that can verify how far along you are and if your pregnancy is progressing.
Where to Get a no-cost Pregnancy Test and Ultrasound
At Waterleaf Women’s Center, we offer no-cost pregnancy testing and ultrasound confirmation, and we have licensed medical staff who can also answer your questions. Fill out the form on this page or call/text confidentially at 630-360-2256 for a free pregnancy test, ultrasound, or consultation appointment. We are here to support you!