How to Check Pregnancy at Home

Generally, the first sign of pregnancy is a missed period. However, you may experience symptoms beforehand, such as fatigue and nausea. You can see your doctor for a blood test, which detects hcG, or pregnancy, hormones. If you don't want to wait until you can see your doctor to find out whether you are pregnant, you can buy a home pregnancy test at your local drugstore. HcG also can be detected in your urine through a home pregnancy test.

Things You'll Need

  • Home pregnancy kit


    • 1

      Purchase a home pregnancy test from a drugstore. Among the most popular brands are Clear Blue and First Response. Buy a pack with a minimum of two tests, in case you need to test a second time.

    • 2

      Carefully take the test out of the packaging. Do not shake or drop the test. Remove the cap and point the test strip down. Place the strip directly in your urine flow. Or, you can urinate in a cup and place the strip in it. Each test instructs you to leave the strip in the urine for different amounts of time. You will have to leave the strip in longer if you urinate in a cup. Check the instructions before taking the test.

    • 3

      Place the pregnancy test on a flat surface, such as a countertop. Take care not to shake the test, as this can adversely affect the results window. The results may turn up immediately, or can take as long as 10 minutes to appear.

    • 4

      Take another test if the results window turns up blank. This indicates a defective test.

    • 5

      Call your doctor if your test is positive. Your doctor will conduct a pelvic exam and perhaps a blood test, depending on how far along you are. At about eight weeks' gestation, the doctor may perform an ultrasound.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wait to conduct a home pregnancy test until you actually miss your period. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the results will be more accurate, as pregnancy hormones multiply each day.
  • Use a home test in the morning with your first urine. More hcG will be present during this time, making your results more accurate.
  • Do not take multiple tests if you get a negative result. You may have tested too early. Instead, wait a few days and test again if you still have not menstruated.
  • If you suspect you are pregnant, stop any activities that can be harmful to the baby, such as smoking and drinking.
  • Call your doctor if the pregnancy test results are negative but you still have not had a period.
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