Compared to the pregnancy tests of yesteryear, today’s home pregnancy tests enjoy great reputations for being both reliable and affordable. In fact, even the cheapest of store brands can provide trustworthy results that help a woman decide what step to take next in her prenatal care. Even so, women can enhance the results their reliable pregnancy tests give them by taking some precautionary measures before using their testing kits. These tips ensure that the results are accurate and can be relied upon before making an appointment with an obstetrician or gynecologist.
The most reliable pregnancy tests can be compromised by faulty testing methods. For example, most tests instruct women to wash their hands prior to touching the test strip. If they fail to wash their hands, they may expose the strip to contaminants that could compromise the strip’s reading of their urine sample. Even if they believe that their hands are clean, women should still wash their hands as instructed for the most trustworthy results.
Likewise, most test kits warn people not to touch the strip’s indicator window. If contaminants from a person’s hands get into the window, the results may not be readable, forcing the person to buy another test or misinterpret any results that may be visible. Each kit has a set of easy-to-read instructions that ideally should be followed step-by-step. As much as a person may want to experiment with the testing strip or examine it better to figure out how it works, she should leave it intact and simply take the test as directed by the instructions. These precautions ensure that the results are readable and that the test itself is not compromised. A clear result is important if a woman plans to make a doctor’s appointment for a blood test to confirm the home pregnancy test’s results.
Over-the-counter home pregnancy tests vary in prices. Some brands cost upwards of $20 while others cost only a dollar or two to buy at a discount retailer. While some women may believe that the more reliable pregnancy tests should cost a lot of money, the cheaper tests can still offer the same degree of reliability and ease of use. If a woman does not have a lot of money to spend on a fancier kit, she can still find out if she is pregnant by purchasing a kit at her favorite big box or discount retailer.
In fact, even the dollar store chains are now selling pregnancy tests. These tests may not be manufactured by the same companies that are known to make mainstream reliable pregnancy tests. Even so, the dollar store kits must still meet the same quality standards that other manufacturers must meet while making the costlier brands of these tests. It is true, however, that the dollar store brands, while cheap, may feature an older testing method than more popular name brand kits. For example, it is possible that a woman who invests in a dollar store brand may have to dip the testing strip in a cup of her urine instead of placing the strip directly into the urine stream. If older testing methods does not bother the woman taking the test, she may save money and still get relatively reliable results by using a dollar store kit.
Women who have no budget at all to buy even a discount brand of test may try several home testing methods that are highly touted by naturalists who favor home remedies and treatments. It is reported that a woman who believes she is pregnant can know for sure by urinating on dandelions. If the dandelion stems turn blue or change drastic color, she may be pregnant. Likewise, if she adds a few drops of her urine to a dish of bleach and it froths or turns colors, she similar may assume that she is expecting. These home testing methods cost very little and can be used with products a woman already has available.
Women who want to know without a doubt that they are pregnant may prefer to use reliable pregnancy tests that have been scrutinized and recommended by consumer groups. One of the best known tests considered to be extraordinarily reliable includes the EPT family of home pregnancy tests. The EPT brand comes in standard and digital tests. This brand has a reliability rate of 99 percent and remains one of the favorites on the market today.
Along with EPT, ClearBlue Easy Pregnancy Test also ranks high with consumers as being reliable and affordable. Found at most retailers and pharmacies, this test can be used even before a woman misses her period and still give an accurate reading of the hCG levels in her urine. Many doctors’ offices also use this brand to test patients before recommending a blood test to confirm a pregnancy. ClearBlue Easy has been on the market for several decades now and remains a test that many women have come to trust.
However, some store brands also rank high for reliability and affordability. For example, the Equate brand of pregnancy test can cost as much as $15 less than an EPT or ClearBlue Easy test. However, it too has a 99 percent chance of giving an accurate result and can be afforded on even the tightest of budgets. Before buying a test, a woman may do well to compare these accuracy rates and the prices for each brand before deciding which test is right for her.