Have you missed a period, feeling nauseous, tired, breast soreness, and other such symptoms? If yes, these are signs of pregnancy, and you may want to take a pregnancy test to know the result. In case of an unplanned pregnancy, knowing about it soon will give you options to cope with it. You may either continue the pregnancy to full term, opt for termination, or adoption. Be it any choice, firstly, you need to understand why, when, and where to take the pregnancy test, and what to do next.
What Are the Early Signs of a Pregnancy?
There are hormonal changes to start with. This can lead to headaches, fatigue due to the production of the hormone progesterone, mood swings, an increase in the number of times of urination, breast tenderness, change in weight, appetite difference, food cravings, and other signs. In some cases, there is implantation bleeding, wherein you may encounter slight vaginal bleeding when the embryo attaches to the uterine wall.
Pregnancy Test at Home
Here, you have to pee on a stick from the medical kit. It works more accurately when you have missed your period. But make sure to check the expiration date of any package you use. The examination of urine this way tries to detect the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone, which is produced more during pregnancy. This hormone is moreover released when the fertilized egg implants or rather get attached to the uterus.
But till the fourth week, the results from the pregnancy test kit at home may not be true always. Thus, the best foot forward is to go for a blood test and ultrasonography scan of the uterus. That shall give a proper conclusion as you have conceived or not. You can take a pregnancy test at residence as this is inexpensive, and requires only a urine sample without having to spend much from your pockets.
How to Use a Pregnancy Kit?
Pregnancy kits are of different types. Some ask you to collect the urine in a fresh cup and then to complete the test, you have to dip the stick into the given liquid. Or, you have to collect your urine in a cup and place a little amount of urine in a special container. Then there are pregnancy testing sticks which you have to hold onto an area where the urine stream will fall on it.
The results are confirmed either with a change in colour/symbol (plus or minus)/line or with the words ‘not pregnant’ or ‘pregnant’. The kit can be used at home in privacy and works well if the gestation period is over 4 to 5 weeks. Anything earlier, the test result could be wrong, as it is hard to detect HCG quite early in pregnancy.
When Can You Take a Pregnancy Test?
After you missed a period, you can check for pregnancy as soon as possible. The sooner you will know you have conceived; the more time and options will be present to manage the unwanted pregnancy. A few pregnancy kits can detect pregnancy hormones as soon as 10 days after unprotected intercourse. But the results could be either false or negative.
If you do not have regular periods, then it is better to go for a pregnancy test only after three weeks from unprotected intercourse. You can buy the kit from a local outlet or order the same on the internet. Or, you may visit a health clinic for ultrasonography of the uterus.
What to Do Next If You Have Conceived?
There are several options to cope with an unintended pregnancy. Firstly, you may want to keep the pregnancy if ready with everything required. Or, you can terminate the pregnancy with pills. But you can take the medicines only if the pregnancy is intrauterine. For extrauterine pregnancy, you have to get the same terminated through a clinical process.
Knowing the signs of pregnancy and how to use a pregnancy kit will help you to find out if you are pregnant or not. To get a proper confirmation, however, ultrasonography of the lower abdomen is the most reliable. If the pregnancy is unintentional, you can either choose to end it or continue the same.