When to take a pregnancy test is probably the no.1 question you asked yourself after you bought a pregnancy test. Understanding when a pregnancy test can be taken can be easily learned if you educate yourself on how pregnancy tests actually determine how you are pregnant.
Every pregnancy test tests for a hormone called hCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin. This hormone is released after the egg is fertilized and is implanted in the uterus (can take up to 12 days after fertilization to be implanted.) When this happens, hCG is released by the embryo and in a few days makes its way into your urine. hCG is important to your pregnancy because it helps other body parts (specifically the corpus luteum) function properly which is critical for pregnancy in humans.
hCG can show up in the urine as soon as 8 days past ovulation and up to 16 days past ovulation on AVERAGE. Of course, there are specific cases that can be different, depending on when you ovulate. It is important to know that answer to when to take a pregnancy test is not the same for everyone. If your ovulation tends to occur on the later end of a normal ovulation period, than your testing window is actually smaller than that of the average. Later ovulation could mean that the only way to get a proper reading is by taking a pregnancy test the day of or after your missed period so that enough hCG is present in your urine to have a proper result.
Early detection pregnancy tests usually have a promise of being able to predict hCG levels as early as 5 days before your missed period. This can be true in most cases of women with an average ovulation period. However if you are later, like I have said above, this “promise” will most likely not be kept because of a later “window” to test hCG levels. Also, if you have an earlier ovulation period, you might be able to in fact test earlier than 5 days.
Well I hope this information can help you in your decision on when to take a pregnancy test. Remember many women take more than one test to determine if they are in fact pregnant or not, and the only way to be 100% sure you are pregnant is to see your doctor! Also, if you have any questions about your ovulation period and your window to test hCG levels, your doctor can help you pinpoint the times.