Pregnancy Test Kits: All You Need To Know

Pregnancy Test Kits: All You Need To Know

7 Mar 2022 | 5 min Read

Sayani Basu

Author | 607 Articles

As the name suggests, a pregnancy test kit is a quick and simple method to confirm your pregnancy from the comfort of your home. It essentially checks the Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) present in your urine, a hormone that is only found in your body if you are pregnant.

While it is usually a one-time use only product, some women may want to test the waters with its limit. So this begs the question: Is a pregnancy test kit reusable? We’ve got the answer for you and it’s not what you imagined. Read on to know more. 

How Does A Pregnancy Test Kit Work?

Most pregnancy test kits come in a box that contains one or two testing sticks. All you need to do is urinate on the stick and the result appears on it–in the form of lines–after a few minutes. This, of course, can vary based on the kit itself.

The test kit checks your urine or blood for a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). Your body makes this hormone after a fertilised egg attaches to the wall of your uterus.This usually happens about six days after fertilisation. The level of HCG rises rapidly, doubling every two to three days.

When to Take A Pregnancy Test?

Some of the pregnancy tests can spot HCG before you miss a period. However, the results will be more accurate if you wait until the first day of a missed period. Results may be more accurate if you conduct the test right after waking up in the morning, as during this time your urine is more concentrated.

Can You Reuse A Pregnancy Test Kit?

The simple answer is: No! can  It is not advisable to reuse the  kit because  you urinate on it, the chemicals react with the urine, forming a reaction. The strip has been exposed to moisture and cannot go back to the pre-chemical reaction stage again. In order to check the accuracy, you will need to start afresh. 

What If You Get A Positive Result from Reusing The Pregnancy Test?

pregnancy test kit
A pregnancy test kit enables you to test for pregnancy at the comfort of your home. | Image Source: pixabay

Studies have found that women may get a positive response when they urinate on a pregnancy test stick twice. However, these are false positives. Once a home pregnancy test stick dries up, it forms an evaporation line that is colourless.

If you add more water to it by trying to wash the stick, the dye can settle in the line, which appears to be positive. Reusing pregnancy test kits can give you inaccurate information that may lead to  misinformation and unnecessary stress. So, simply discard the used strip and buy another one.

Is There Any Pregnancy Test Kit That Can Be Reused?

There is no known reusable pregnancy test kit. The test kits use HCG strips that can be used only once. The HCG strips react even if they come in contact with moisture in the air. This is also considered a used test. If a strip comes in contact with moisture, you won’t be able to  use it.

What Is The Difference Between A Digital Pregnancy Kit And The Non-Digital Pregnancy Kit?

pregnancy test kit
A digital pregnancy kit shows a digital sign instead of a colour indicator. Image Source: Pixabay

The difference between a digital and non-digital pregnancy test is that the digital kit does not give a colour indicator. Instead, it shows a digital sign that you can read.

How Accurate Are Pregnancy Tests?

Home pregnancy tests are 99% accurate. Its accuracy depends on:

  • How soon after pregnancy the test is taken 
  • How strictly you follow the instructions
  • When you ovulate and the time taken for the egg to implant
  • Sensitivity of the pregnancy test

If you test positive you will see a  ‘+’ and if the test is negative then you will be able to see a ‘-’ sign if you have used a non-digital test kit. While a digital test kit shows either the words ‘pregnant’ or ‘not pregnant.’

If your result is positive, you should consult your doctor for the next  steps. It’s very rare to get a false positive result and most of it is the result of drugs like anticonvulsants, fertility drugs, tranquilisers, and hypnotics. It could also be because you have either protein or blood in your urine.

Whereas, if you get a negative result then the chances are you may not be pregnant. However, sometimes the negative result could be because you are under certain medications like antihistamines or diuretics. 

Another reason could be that you tested too soon, or you drank a lot of fluids just before the test and your pee is diluted. Taking the test the wrong way or the test kit being past its expiration date are also some of the other reasons for a negative test. In such a case, you can try and test again after a few days.

Where Can You Buy Pregnancy Test Kits?

Pregnancy test kits are easily available in a drugstore. You can buy them without a prescription. Do not depend on reused pregnancy kits for accurate results. Pregnancy kits are pocket-friendly. Hence, it is advisable to buy a new pregnancy test kit in order to keep false information regarding pregnancy at bay.



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