How Soon Can Conception Be Tested?

The two week period between ovulation and the period after it can be agonizingly long if you want to know whether or not you are pregnant. The good news is that technological advances mean that you can take a pregnancy test several days before this two week period of time. Some of these new tools that can help detect pregnancy earlier include early detection home pregnancy tests, digital basal thermometers and electronic fertility monitors. This article also discusses several things that you can do to increase the tests’ accuracy.

How Soon Can Conception Be Tested?

The amount of time you have to wait to check for conception depends on the type of test that you are using as well as its sensitivity. All pregnancy tests work by measuring the pregnancy hormone which is human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) found in the body. Pregnancy tests which are more sensitive will be closer to a sensitivity of 10 mIU/mL (milli-International Unit per milliliter) while less sensitive ones will be closer to 40 mIU/mL.

Tests administered by your doctor will usually test your blood while home tests will examine the urine. In general blood tests are more sensitive and can give results 6 to 8 days after your ovulation.

It is possible to test for your pregnancy too early in which case you may have a false negative (indicating you are not pregnant when in reality you are). Most of the time taking a pregnancy test around the time you should get your period will make it accurate.

What If the Result Is Negative?

It is possible to get a negative result on a pregnancy test for several reasons including: not being pregnant, ovulating later than normal or your pregnancy not being as far along as thought. Some women will have very low hCG levels when missing a period so if you get a negative result but think you are pregnant, you should repeat the test in three days to give the hormone levels time to build up.

What About Home Pregnancy Test Which Claims to Detect Pregnancy 4 Days Before Period?

Some of the home pregnancy tests you find will claim that they can detect whether or not you are pregnant 4 days before your missed period but this will vary from woman to woman depending on how long her luteal phase (the time between ovulating and getting your period) is and when the embryo implanted. The average luteal phase is between 12 and 16 days, hence the reason that experts recommend waiting two weeks to do a pregnancy test. Tests that claim you can use them 4 days before your period assume that you have an average luteal phase so your ovulation was 10 to 12 days pervious.

It is possible, however, that woman with a luteal phase that is closer to 15 days will not have strong enough hormone levels 4 days before their period (which is 12 after ovulation) although the chances of the pregnancy test being accurate are better than for someone with a luteal phase that is shorter.

It Can Not Be Tested too Early

When taking a pregnancy test, it is important to remember that conception will not necessarily occur the same day you have sex. Conception occurs when you are ovulating and the sperm reaches an egg, which is not an instantaneous process. Because sperm are able to survive up to four days (given optimal conditions), you could get pregnant even if you ovulate four days after having sex.

Because of this, there is almost no chance of detecting pregnancy four or five days after you conceive. Instead, you need to wait until it is only several days until your period should be due and this is even true with more sensitive tests such as First Response. If you want to take a pregnancy test sooner, then you will need to have a blood test done.

Which Factors Influence Accuracy of the Tests?

Pregnancy tests are very accurate most of the time (as long as you follow the instructions correctly) with home tests having an accuracy of around 97% and blood tests done by your doctor being even more accurate. There are a few things that you can do to improve the accuracy of your pregnancy test.

The most important thing is to wait a week or more after you miss your period as this will give your body enough time for the hormone levels (of hCG) to rise sufficiently to be detected.

It also helps to take your at home pregnancy test right away in the morning because at this time your urine will be more concentrated.

In addition to how long you wait to take the pregnancy test and what time of the day you take it, there are several other factors that can also influence its accuracy. You also need to make sure that you pay close attention to the instructions for more accurate results. More sensitive tests also tend to give results that have a higher accuracy. The accuracy also depends on at what point within your cycle you ovulate and how long after this implantation takes place.

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