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pregnant woman considering pregnancy testing

Think you might be pregnant? Taking a pregnancy test is the first step to getting the clarity you need right now.

How Do Pregnancy Tests Work?

When you’re pregnant, human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is present in your body. This pregnancy hormone’s levels start low but rises quickly, and pregnancy tests work by detecting hCG in your blood or urine.

Blood and urine pregnancy tests work similarly, but they’re used for different purposes.

Urine Pregnancy Testing

As the name suggests, urine pregnancy tests use a urine sample to determine if you’re pregnant. At-home pregnancy tests are urine-based, and these are a cheap, widely available option.

Blood Pregnancy Testing

Blood pregnancy tests use a blood sample to determine if you’re pregnant. However, unlike urine tests, blood pregnancy tests can determine the actual levels of hCG in your blood. This is important in certain scenarios (like if you’re at risk for a miscarriage).

Blood pregnancy tests must be taken in a clinical setting, and they can be more expensive than at-home urine pregnancy tests.

When Should I Take A Pregnancy Test?

Since hCG levels change dramatically week-to-week in early pregnancy, knowing when to take a pregnancy test is essential for receiving accurate results.

Most at-home pregnancy tests claim or imply that they are 99% accurate if taken on the first day of a missed period. However, if you take the test too early, you risk receiving a false-negative result, which is when you’re pregnant but your hCG levels are too low for the pregnancy test to detect.

If you don’t know when the first day of your missed period should occur, you can estimate and take the test then. If you receive a negative result but still haven’t had your period a week later, try testing again. Sometimes, waiting a week to test again can mean the difference between a negative and a positive result.

What If My Pregnancy Test Comes Back Positive?

If your pregnancy test is positive, taking a deep breath is important. Many thoughts and emotions are likely swirling around your mind, but getting a positive pregnancy test result is just the first step for confirming your pregnancy. Getting an ultrasound is the next step.

At Care Net Pregnancy Center of Paradise, we offer free pregnancy testing and limited obstetrical ultrasound scans to give you the information you need. We understand what you’re going through right now and are here to help. Contact us today to schedule a free, confidential appointment with one of our nurses.

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