What You Need to Know About Taking a Pregnancy Test at Night
Published November 7, 2017
Is it 10 o’clock at night and it’s just hit you that you’re five days late on your period?
Have you and your hubby been trying to conceive and you’re wondering if it’s okay to take a pregnancy test as soon as you get off work because the suspense is just killing you?
If you’re feeling any symptoms of early pregnancy, then it may be time to take a home pregnancy test. But when is the best time to take one? Will it be accurate if you take it at night?
Keep reading to find out.
How Do Home Pregnancy Tests Work?
Home pregnancy tests work by detecting the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone in your urine. This hormone rapidly produces in the first few days of pregnancy after the embryo implants into your uterine wall. HCG helps form the placenta and supports the development of your growing baby.
Most home pregnancy tests have you either collect your urine in a cup and dip the stick into your urine or place the stick in your urine midstream. Some even have you collect urine and insert it into a well on the stick with an eye dropper.
You then have to lay the test on a flat surface and wait for a designated period (usually between 3-5 minutes). After this time, you will look for a change in color, a line, or a symbol that will indicate if you are indeed pregnant or not (source).
Related Reading: What You Should Know About Expired Pregnancy Tests
When Is the Best Time to Take a Home Pregnancy Test?
One of an essential rule of a home pregnancy tests it when to take it. Most home pregnancy tests claim to detect a pregnancy as early as 3-4 days before your missed period. But for the most accurate results, healthcare providers recommend waiting until one week after your missed period (source).
You may even experience some pregnancy symptoms before even taking a test, such as:
- Food aversions and/or cravings
- Implantation bleeding or implantation cramping
- Tender or swollen breasts
- Frequent urination
- Enhanced sense of smell
If you’re experiencing any symptoms of early pregnancy, it is certainly okay to take a pregnancy test sooner. Just know that you may get a false negative from taking it too early, meaning that you get a negative result, but are in fact pregnant.
This will happen because you may not have enough hCG in your urine to be detectable. If you get a negative result but think you’re pregnant, wait 5-7 days and retake the test.
Can I Take a Home Pregnancy Test at Night?
All home pregnancy tests are designed to detect hCG, but there are certain times of the day in which it’s more detectable.
No matter which tests you buy, your first-morning urine will always give you the most accurate results, as your urine is more concentrated, allowing hCG levels to be higher and more easy to detect.
However, there is no one stopping you from taking a home pregnancy test at night. If you really can’t wait until morning, then go ahead and take one.
The only issue with taking one at night is that it might be inaccurate.
If the test comes back positive when taking it at night, then you are most likely pregnant, as it is pretty rare to get a false-positive result (but it does happen).
False positives are usually the result of an ectopic pregnancy, early miscarriage, fertility drugs, or user error (reading the test too soon/late or misinterpreting the evaporation line as a positive line).
If your test comes back negative, just try again in the morning. You may get a different result with your first-morning urine, as there may have been too little of the hCG hormone in your urine at night to trigger a positive result (source).
What About a Blood Test?
Blood tests also work by detecting the hcG hormone but can detect a pregnancy much sooner (about 7-12 days from conception) than a urine test.
A blood test should give you the same result no matter what time of day, but they are expensive, have to be done at a doctor’s office, and take longer to get results back (source).
- If you think you might be pregnant, but too anxious to wait until morning to take a pregnancy test, then go ahead and take one. Just know that taking a pregnancy test at night could give you inaccurate answers.
- If you take a pregnancy test at night and get a positive result, then you are most likely pregnant. If you get a negative result, you might not be pregnant, but you may have also just not had high enough levels of hCG in your urine to be detectable.
- If you get a negative result, go ahead and take another test in the morning. You may get a different result with your first-morning urine. Good luck, and I hope you get the results you’re wanting!
Have you taken a home pregnancy test at night? Did you get accurate results? Share your experiences with us in the comments and be sure to share this post all of your friends that are trying to conceive.