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If you have been waiting for that positive result, taking a pregnancy test at night might not be the best idea.
You might be wondering what time of day is it best to take a pregnancy test?
Studies have shown the best time is early in the morning. There are instances, however, when you may need to take a pregnancy test at night for one reason or another.
The important thing to remember is that if you do take it at night and you get a negative result, it might not be accurate and you should take another one in the morning to be sure.
Here’s why testing for pregnancy at night may not give you the most accurate results:
Are pregnancy tests accurate at night?
The best time to take a pregnancy test in order to obtain the most accurate results is during the early morning. This is because the level of pregnancy hormones (hCG) in your urine is higher in the morning compared to at night.
Of course, this isn’t always possible and if you have no other choice or no other time to do it, you can still take a pregnancy test at night.
You need to keep in mind that if you do take a pregnancy test a night and it comes out as negative, you can still try again during the morning just to make sure. If you test out positive the next day, it would most likely mean that you are pregnant.
If you take a test at night and end up testing positive, there is a much smaller chance that the next day you will test negative.
Another possibility, although a rare one, is if you would get a false-positive. This means that you can test positive for being pregnant but then, in reality, you are not. This is usually a result of either an early miscarriage, an ectopic pregnancy, or simply human error in reading the results.
Does it matter what time you take a pregnancy test?
The answer is yes! Home pregnancy tests work by detecting the levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) or the pregnancy hormone that can be found in your urine. The placenta produces more of this hormone as implantation occurs.
hCG is usually the most detectable a week after you missed your period. Some doctors may even recommend two weeks after you missed your period. As the days go by, more of these hormones are produced, making it easier for the tests to detect a pregnancy if ever there is one.
This hormone is also vital for the development of your baby. If you take a test earlier than a week after you missed your period, the results might not be as accurate since there simply isn’t enough of the hormones that can be detected.
When it comes to certain times of the day, the hCG hormone will be most detectable in your first-morning urine since this the most concentrated urine that you will pass within a 24 hour period.
This is because while you are sleeping, your bladder is getting full and the urine will the most concentrated when you pee in the morning. This will also depend if you have woken up in the middle of the night to pee.
Your first urine in the morning will contain the highest levels of hCG possible for the pregnancy test to be able to detect a positive result. On the other hand, this can also be the most accurate time to take the test it if you want to make sure that you are NOT pregnant.
As the day goes on and as you pass more and more urine, the less concentrated it will be and the levels of hCG in the urine will also be less. This is also due to the fact that during the day, you would be drinking fluids and peeing throughout.
If you are drinking tea or coffee, for example, this could dilute your urine since they contain caffeine which is a diuretic. This would lead to more chances of getting a false-negative result.
In the evening, it would contain the least levels of the hormone making it difficult for the pregnancy test to yield accurate results. When you take a pregnancy test at night, you could end up getting a false-negative result.
A false negative means that even if you are pregnant, the test shows a negative result since it couldn’t work properly due to lesser hCG in your urine. It is also important to use fresh urine in order to yield more accurate results so when you do have the sample, make sure you test it right away.
Taking a pregnancy test
The most common home pregnancy tests require you to collect urine in a cup so that you can dip a stick in or you can use the stick midstream while peeing. The latter process could prove more difficult and you could end up wasting the test.
There are also some pregnancy tests that require you to deposit your urine in a well on the stick using a dropper. You would then need to lay the stick on a flat surface and wait for about three to five minutes.
Some tests that require you to wait up to 10 minutes so patience is key here! After a few minutes have passed by, you can check to see if there is a line, a change in color, or if there is a symbol indicating and confirming a pregnancy.
Here are some important things to watch out for when taking a pregnancy test:
Use fresh urine
Using first-morning urine is the ideal thing to do since this would be the most potent and would contain more of the hCG hormones, leading to more accurate results
Prior to doing the test, make sure you read the labels and instructions properly. Different brands will also have different methods so don’t assume that one brand will be used in the same way as the other. By being aware of the product you are using, you are ensuring the best results possible and you are not wasting the test.
Check the expiration date
This is an important factor that will determine if you get an accurate result or not. Sometimes we might just miss out reading the expiration date or maybe you have a test that has been around for a while and you do not want to waste it. It is better to use a new pack just to be sure.
If you can, look for a pregnancy test that is sensitive enough to detect 25 mlU or less. This can be useful especially if you are taking early pregnancy tests.
Whatever home pregnancy tests you use, make sure you read the instructions well and follow them to make sure that you are doing it properly and getting the most accurate results. If you get negative results, don’t be discouraged! You can always try again during your next first-morning urine.
False Negative Pregnancy Test
There are a few reasons why a pregnancy test could yield a negative result:
The concentration of pregnancy hormones
Sometimes there may be issues with the urine sample that you are using for the pregnancy test. There might also be some concerns with the potency of the urine to be able to have adequate hCG hormones for detection.
Time of testing
If you are taking the test too early on, there might not be enough hormones yet and a negative result could happen.
If you are incorrectly using the test or if you misread a line for something else, this could lead to false negatives. Make sure you read up on the instructions and if you feel the need to, take more than one test to confirm your results.
If you still aren’t confident in your results, you can always consult your doctor for further testing. This could either be a blood test or taking an ultrasound. Note that these tests are ones that will be more expensive than a home pregnancy test so they are your next option if you want the most accurate results possible.
In general, the best time to take a home pregnancy test is a week after you have missed your period. This is when the levels of the pregnancy hormone hCG can be detected accurately, giving you the correct results. This will also ensure that you are not wasting time and money.
When it comes to what time of the day you should take a pregnancy test, it is best to take one during early morning instead of at night if you can control it. This is so that you can get better and more accurate results.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a pregnancy test in the evening if you must (and also to put your mind at ease for a while), but it is better to take one again the next morning just to make sure you are getting the most authentic results.