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How early can I test to see whether I am pregnant?

How early can I test to see whether I am pregnant?

Most home pregnancy test kits can be used from the day that your period is due. Some tests, however, can detect a pregnancy starting from 4 days before your period is due.

Each kit can detect different levels of hCG in your urine - most commonly the kits begin detecting hCG at 25 mIu/mL. At the time of writing, there is one kit on the New Zealand market which can detect hCG as low as 15 mIu/mL - this brand is called Discover and is effective from up to four days before your period is due

The levels of hCG in your urine are highest first thing in the morning when you go to the toilet after waking up. However, the modern test kits are now so sensitive that they are able to detect hCG at any time of the day. Just remember not to drink lots of fluid before taking the test - this will dilute the amount of hCG in your urine.

Remember that a negative test does not always mean that you are not pregnant - you may just have conducted the test too early, i.e. before there was enough hCG in your urine. If your period does not arrive within the next 7 days, repeat the test - it is for this reason that tests are often purchased as packs of two.

A positive test, however, is 99% accurate (but be aware that a false positive could be caused by a recent miscarriage or fertility drugs).

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