When you are eager to become a parent, time can seem to crawl as you await the time that you will welcome your newborn home. In your haste to become a new parent, however, you may forget some important rules about testing so that you get the most accurate result. As you contemplate when is the perfect time to take a pregnancy test, you should objectively consider your reproductive system and how long it can take to conceive. By allowing your body time to do its job, you can get the most accurate result and look forward to new parenthood.

In fact, you may rush to take a test just a few days after ovulating and having intercourse. In reality, this time frame is too short because any pregnancy will not have had time to implant itself in your uterus and begin producing the pregnancy hormones that can be detected by commercial pregnancy tests. In fact, the hormone hCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin, is made by the cells that will create your baby’s placenta. The earliest it can be detected is 11 days after conception.

Given that sperm can live for up to five days in your uterus, you cannot pinpoint exactly when conception takes place. Even if you know when you ovulate and have sex on that day, you still must consider that your egg is viable for up to 24 hours after your ovary releases it. With the sperm and your egg having that length of time to connect, it could be anywhere from an hour to several days after you have sex to actually conceive. With that, most doctors advise women to wait to test until a few days before your scheduled period should start, at the earliest. At the latest, you should wait until your period is a few days late. This time frame will allow you to take a test and have any hCG in your bloodstream detected by the test.

When To Take A Pregnancy Test After Sex?

When you have sex, any sperm that are present in your body can live for up to five days on average. During those five days, you could conceive at any time if you are ovulating. If you take a pregnancy test during that time frame, you will more than likely get a negative result, even if you technically are a few days into your pregnancy.

Instead of testing within a few days after having sex, you should instead wait for at least 11 to 12 days, as this amount of time allows for any hCG to build up in your bloodstream. When the smallest amount is present, a quality over-the-counter test should be able to detect it and give you a positive test result. Some of the better known high-quality pregnancy tests include EPT and ClearBlue Easy pregnancy test. Some store brands also sell high-quality tests that likewise can detect pregnancy hormone levels in your body.

If you use a poorer quality test, you may get a false negative result, even if you really are pregnant. If you cannot afford the more expensive tests and must use a cheaper version, you would do well to wait about two weeks after having sex to test. These tests, as well as the higher costs ones, will be able to detect hCG and give you a clear reading. Of course, after two weeks’ time has lapsed, you may have already missed your period. Testing a day or two after missing your period should give you a reliable result regardless of what test you use.

When To Take A Pregnancy Test After Ovulation?

Most women ovulate about 10 days to two weeks after the first day of their last period. Some women can tell when they ovulate because they feel a small twinge of pain in the side of their bodies where the ovary that is releasing the egg is located. After you ovulate, your egg remains viable for up to 24 hours afterward. If you have unprotected sex during this 24 hour time frame, you may become pregnant.

If you know when you ovulate, determining when to take a pregnancy test can be simple. In most cases, you can test about 10 days to two weeks after ovulating and get a reliable result. If you are unsure when you ovulated, you should wait ideally until you are a day or two late on your period.

You also should not test if you have been sick or are taking medications that could alter your result. Sometimes when you are sick, your hormones are thrown off track, making reliable test results difficult to obtain. If you are sick with the stomach flu, for example, or are taking antibiotics or hormone therapies, you should ask your doctor for a blood test.