What To Do After Positive Pregnancy Test at Home

You’ve just taken the test, and it’s come back positive! Congratulations, you’re going to be a mom. But now that the excitement has worn off and reality has set in, what comes next? In this blog post I’ll give you a few tips for staying healthy after getting a positive pregnancy test at home. Do remember that every woman is different and everyone has her own preferences when it comes to keeping herself healthy during pregnancy, but these are general guidelines that may apply to you (or at least get you thinking).

Eat healthy

  • Eat a balanced diet. Good sources of protein include lean beef, chicken, fish, beans and nuts. Calcium-rich foods include milk and cheese products; calcium-fortified breakfast cereals are good as well. Iron-rich foods include meat (especially red meat), dark green leafy vegetables (spinach), dried fruits such as apricots and prunes, legumes such as chickpeas or lentils, whole grains like brown rice and quinoa or fortified breakfast cereals. Vitamin C helps your body absorb iron from food; try citrus fruits like oranges or grapefruits! Vitamin A helps boost immunity during pregnancy so eat some carrots too!

Get enough sleep

Sleep is essential for your health and the health of your baby. Sleep deprivation increases the risk of developing high blood pressure, which can lead to complications during pregnancy. A good night’s sleep will help you feel more alert and energized throughout the day, which makes it easier to take on daily tasks like cleaning, cooking and childcare. It also gives you more energy to be active with your children if they are awake when you get home from work or school; this improves how much time you spend together as a family.

When do we need sleep? We should aim for seven to nine hours per night – but this varies from person to person depending on age, gender and other factors including stress levels or whether you have other responsibilities such as caring for a child after school hours (or even staying awake late at night). For example: if someone has difficulty getting up early due to lack of restful nights rather than poor sleeping habits then four hours might actually be enough! On the other hand if someone has difficulty falling asleep then eight hours may not always be enough!

Avoid bad habits

You may be tempted to do things that are harmful to your baby, like smoking, drinking alcohol, or taking drugs. Don’t do it! These habits can cause health problems for your baby and will put you at risk of losing the pregnancy.

Be careful about what you put in your body too. For example: don’t take any medication unless approved by a doctor. It’s also important to avoid anything that could hurt your baby during sex (for instance, make sure there’s no chance of an accident when driving after having an orgasm).

Gain weight slowly

It’s important to gain weight slowly and steadily. Don’t try to gain too much weight too quickly, or you may experience complications like high blood pressure, gestational diabetes and preeclampsia (a dangerous condition for you and your baby). You should aim for an average of 25 pounds (11.5 kg) during the second trimester and about 35 pounds (15.9 kg) by the end of pregnancy. If you are overweight or obese before becoming pregnant, however, it is important for your health and safety that you do not exceed these limits of 25-35 lbs (11.5 – 15.9 kg). To find out whether this applies to you, consult with a healthcare professional who specializes in maternal and fetal health care before making any changes in your diet or exercise routine

Try prenatal yoga and meditation

Prenatal yoga and meditation can be immensely beneficial for a new mother-to-be. Yoga and meditation are both excellent ways to relieve stress, which is especially important during pregnancy.

  • How to do prenatal yoga: Prenatal yoga classes are generally gentle in nature, focusing on poses that stretch and strengthen the muscles around your uterus without straining them too much or causing pain. The instructor will walk you through each movement one by one, making sure that your body feels comfortable with each posture before moving on to the next one.
  • How to do meditation: Meditation allows you to focus inwardly, giving yourself some time away from daily life (and its many stresses) so that you can relax both physically and mentally. While sitting quietly may seem difficult at first, with practice it’ll become easier over time—meditation experts recommend finding a quiet place where no one will bother or distract you while practicing this technique every day as often as possible (ideally 10 minutes per session).

Eating healthy, sleeping enough, avoiding bad habits, gaining weight slowly, and trying prenatal yoga and meditation will help you stay healthy during the pregnancy.

Eating healthy, sleeping enough, avoiding bad habits, gaining weight slowly, and trying prenatal yoga and meditation will help you stay healthy during the pregnancy.

In a friendly tone

After you take your first pregnancy test at home, it’s time to celebrate! You have successfully taken control over your body and its reproductive system. Now that you’ve proven that you’re pregnant, it’s time to make sure that your body is ready for this new life form growing inside of you. There are many things that pregnant women should do in order to stay healthy during the nine months before birth.

Conclusion

To conclude, if you have a positive pregnancy test at home, you should stop worrying and start thinking about the baby. It is normal to be anxious at first, but don’t let it consume your life. You have so many things to look forward to! Stay calm and eat healthy; we’re sure you’ll do great!

What is a pregnancy test?

Pregnancy tests measure the level of the pregnancy hormone HCG in your urine or blood. HCG can be detected in your blood as early as 6-8 days after conception happens, but not in your urine until a day or two before you expect your period. The easiest thing to do is to wait until you have missed a period and then test. If you test your urine too soon, you may get a negative result when you are actually pregnant. Some test kits recommending testing again a week or two after a negative result if you have not had a menstrual period by then. Be sure your test hasn’t expired, and read the instructions before you use the test.

Are home pregnancy tests ever wrong?

If the test was positive, you are very likely pregnant! Home pregnancy tests are quite accurate and will not register the presence of HCG unless it is actually there. False positives (testing positive when you are actually not pregnant) are extremely rare. The test only tells you that you are pregnant, and doesn’t give any information on the health of the pregnancy or likelihood of having problems with your pregnancy (e.g., bleeding, miscarriage). Once you see a positive test, it’s time to book an appointment with your health care provider. In the meantime, eat well and avoid alcohol, drugs, and tobacco. Continue to take a folic acid-containing prenatal vitamin every day, if you have not been taking one already.

happy couple expressing joy over positive pregnancy test

Image: Thais Ramos Varela

Some of us dream for months (and sometimes years) of that telltale plus sign. For others, pregnancy is a complete surprise. Either way, you’re definitely not alone if you find yourself wondering, “I got a positive pregnancy test—now what?”

Finding out you’re pregnant is a life-changing moment that comes with its fair share of surging emotions: excitement, joy, relief, panic and maybe an extra dose of confusion over what to do next. But before you start deciding between an epidural or a medication-free birth, pause for a second. You’ve got 40 weeks to find all the answers, so take it one trimester at a time.

The best way to make sense of a positive pregnancy test is with, well, baby steps. “You don’t have to figure it all out, the second you’re pregnant,” says Rebekah Wheeler, CNM, MPH, a midwife based in Napa, California. “Pregnancy is a process, and asking yourself if you’ll be a good mother, learning to trust your instincts, is all part of it.” So what are the important steps to take—and when?

Suffice to say, it’s totally natural to get a positive pregnancy test and think: “now what?” Focusing on all the big and small to-dos on your ever-growing list (not to mention the changes happening in your ever-growing body) can be daunting to say the least. Fortunately, we’re here to help you streamline and simplify. We’ve created a comprehensive guide to break down exactly what you should do after a positive pregnancy test, from scheduling your first prenatal appointment to making healthy changes to your current lifestyle. Follow along so you can feel informed and prepared in the early stages of pregnancy.

Consider Taking a Second Test

If your first instinct is to run to the pharmacy and buy all the different pregnancy test options, take a deep breath and slow down. Certainly, there’s no harm in taking a second test. Human error and misreadings can occur—so a little validation can give you some peace of mind.

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It’s true that an expired pregnancy test or, more commonly, user error can result in a false positive. This is why it’s important to read labels and carefully follow all included instructions when taking a pregnancy test. Wait too long to check the result, and you may note the appearance of a faint evaporation line and misread the results—meaning you interpret it as positive when it’s actually negative.

Keep in mind that while false positives are very uncommon with pregnancy tests, there’s a small chance that an at-home test can pick up the pregnancy hormone, hCG, even if you’ve miscarried shortly after conception—something that doctors refer to as a chemical pregnancy. “You probably wouldn’t even know that you were pregnant, if you didn’t take the pregnancy test,” says Mary Jane Minkin, MD, a clinical professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut. If you did have a chemical pregnancy, you’ll likely get your period a little late.

According to the Mayo Clinic, a pregnancy test could also read positive if you’re taking certain medications, including fertility drugs, and in the event of an ectopic pregnancy. For this reason (and others), it’s important to schedule a doctor’s appointment after getting a positive pregnancy test result.

Calculate Baby’s Due Date

With so much to think about, it’s hard to know what to do after a positive pregnancy test. But one thing you’ll likely be itching to know is baby’s due date. Conception typically happens between 11 and 21 days after the first day of your last period, but since it’s tricky to know when conception actually occurs, doctors instead go off of the first day of your last period. Check out The Bump due date calculator to get an estimated date. This will also help you gauge how far you are in your pregnancy. Farther along than you expected? Remember, your progress is tallied from the first day of your last period, so the two or three weeks before you ovulated are still counted, even though you technically weren’t pregnant yet.

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Let the News Sink in—and Celebrate!

You’ve received a positive pregnancy test—now, what you can and should do is take a beat to let the monumental news sink in. Even if you’ve been looking forward to this day, it’s not uncommon to feel a bit overwhelmed. Give yourself time and grace—and then celebrate!

Bask in this joyful moment, perhaps together with your partner, before well-meaning grandparents and friends accost you with a million questions: “Are you going to find out the sex? Do you want a boy or a girl? Have you picked out a name?” Finding out you’re pregnant is the first sign your life is about to change in a million ways. Add a surge of pregnancy hormones to the mix and you’ve got yourself a kaleidoscope of emotions. “You’re basically flooded with progesterone, which causes you to feel much more vulnerable,” Wheeler says. This means you might be prone to crying and panicking about the future and your career—and that’s completely normal. “Most of the time these moods will pass if you rest. Don’t take on unnecessary tasks that you can avoid,” adds Minkin.

Make a Doctor’s Appointment

After you see that positive pregnancy test, you’ll want to confirm it with a professional. Your first prenatal visit usually happens around your eighth week of pregnancy. But even though you may not see the doctor for a few weeks yet, calling to schedule an appointment is definitely one of the first steps to take after finding out you’re pregnant—depending on the practice, wait times can be long.

If you have an existing medical condition, had previous miscarriages or are experiencing abnormal pain or other atypical symptoms, your doctor may want to see you sooner. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to them with any and all questions or concerns.

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Decide on the type of care provider

As you prepare to make your first prenatal appointment, you can decide to seek prenatal care from either an ob-gyn or a midwife. The decision between the two really depends on what you’re hoping for during pregnancy and delivery. If you’re set on an epidural or may have a higher-risk pregnancy (perhaps because of diabetes or high blood pressure), then an ob-gyn is probably the best choice since they’re equipped to offer medication and perform surgery. On the other hand, those hoping for a low-intervention vaginal delivery (maybe even at home) can look for a midwife. Oftentimes, nurse midwives can request the same labs and ultrasounds as an ob-gyn. But guess what: You don’t necessarily have to pick one or the other. A lot of hospital practices work with midwives who spearhead prenatal care and labor with an ob-gyn backing them up.

Find the right doctor for you

Once you decide on the type of care for you, start scouting for an awesome provider. If you already have a great ob-gyn and want to stick with them, great! If not, there are many ways to find one you’ll feel comfortable with. “Yelp.com is actually a pretty good way to find an OB or midwife,” says Wheeler, who suggests cross-referencing well-rated providers with those recommended in prenatal yoga classes and childbirth centers. Zocdoc.comHealthgrades.com and RateMDs.com are some other sites you can explore to find provider ratings.

If you already know which hospital suits you best, try Minkin’s trick to find an ob-gyn: Call the head nurse at Labor & Delivery and ask for a recommendation—the nurses see doctors during the most stressful times and know who takes good care of their patients. And don’t worry if you don’t love the first doctor you meet with; it’s more than okay to try out different midwives and ob-gyns before you commit. “You can transfer up until the moment you’re in labor,” says Wheeler. “People feel embarrassed leaving, but you never have to tell the provider and have a confrontation. The new office will request all your medical records.” The important thing is that you find someone trustworthy who makes you feel comfortable.

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After your first visit, and if everything is progressing smoothly, you’ll see your doctor once a month for the first two trimesters. After 32 weeks, the visits are twice a month, then once a week after 36 weeks.

Decide Who to Tell and When

Sure, snapping a picture of your pregnancy test and sharing it on social media will do the job, but announcing that you’re expecting a baby is a bit different than Instagramming your lunch. Many couples wait until after 13 weeks to make the news public, since that’s when the risk of miscarriage goes down significantly. When it comes to close family and friends, you may decide it makes sense to spill the beans around six to eight weeks. As one expectant mom put it, “even if we did lose the baby, I would need my parents and close friends for support, so I’d be telling them either way.” Plus, you might want to loop in close family and friends not only so they can celebrate, but so they can also be understanding if you bewilderingly break down in a waterworks of emotions.

Friends and loved ones can help you find your footing in this exciting new role of a lifetime. It takes a village, and creating that community can start now if you choose. At the end of the day, it’s completely up to you and your partner when and how you want to share the happy news.

The one group of people who can wait for your announcement is employers and coworkers. “It’s no one’s business in the first trimester,” says Christine Romans, CNN’s chief business correspondent and the author of Smart is the New Rich: Money Guide for Millennials. “Later, say at 20 weeks when you’re going to start showing, let your boss and human resources know. Together, you’ll want to start plotting through how long you will take off for maternity leave and how to delegate your work in your absence.”

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Learn What’s in Store for You and Baby

Among the things to know when expecting a baby? Understanding what’s in store for you for the next nine+ months. One of the coolest things after finding out you’re pregnant is tracking baby’s growth—from the size of an apple seed to a watermelon!—and the many changes in your own body via The Bump Pregnancy Week-By-Week guide (and if you haven’t already, download The Bump app.)

While every woman’s body reacts differently, you’re bound to have at least some of the standard early pregnancy symptoms: nausea, cramping and spotting, sore breasts, acne, mood swings, frequent urination, headaches and food cravings and/or aversions, to name a few. You’ll also likely experience a level of exhaustion that rivals all the all-nighters you may have pulled. “You’ll be eating for two and sleeping for two,” Minkin jokes. This please-let-me-lie-down kind of tiredness, courtesy of an uptick in progesterone, peaks between 8 to 12 weeks and then starts to ease up.

If these physical changes come as a surprise—or if this is baby number one—you may find yourself facing a steep learning curve. Of course, instinct may kick into gear and some things will come naturally. Other parts of pregnancy and early parenting will require a bit more time, patience and practice. The good news is that there are plenty of resources available to help you navigate this new stage of life, from books to podcasts and apps. You can also sign up for expert-led classes to gain a deeper understanding of labor and delivery issues, breastfeeding and newborn care; these sessions are often hosted at local hospitals or community centers. Our advice? Do your due diligence, and slowly start your research as soon as you receive that positive pregnancy test—there’s a lot to cover.

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Get Into Healthy Habits

You probably already know that smoking and drinking are no-nos during pregnancy, but there are a bunch of other ways you’ll need to get your body into tip-top shape for a healthy pregnancy. If you’re not already taking prenatal vitamins, now is the time to start—as baby develops, they’re going to need calcium to build bones and iron to make red blood cells, plus folic acid to prevent neural tube defects and loads of other important nutrients. And baby gets all this from what you’ve got stored in your body. “The kid’s going to steal from you,” Minkin says. “You want to make sure your body doesn’t get depleted.”

In terms of changing up your daily menu, a pregnancy diet isn’t all that different from a typical healthy diet—think: lots of fruits, veggies, whole grains and lean proteins. But there are a few foods that should be avoided: Steer clear of cold cuts, deli salads, unpasteurized cheeses and refrigerated smoked seafood, since these can house listeria, a bacteria that can cause pregnancy complications. You’ll also want to avoid raw fish (sushi) and those that are high in mercury (swordfish, tilefish and king mackerel), since the heavy metal is toxic to baby’s nervous system. You should also limit your caffeine intake to no more than 200 mg a day.

While nut butters, salmon and green veggies are great kitchen staples for the next 40 weeks, if you’re battling with morning sickness, you may be living on a diet of applesauce and crackers at first. “Go easy on yourself,” Wheeler says. “Forget the nutrition component until you feel better.” She also recommends high-protein foods, like chicken and eggs, before bed to keep you satiated longer and minimize nausea in the morning.

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After finding out you’re pregnant, you’ll also want to drink plenty of liquids. Staying hydrated allows your body to produce more blood volume, build new tissue, carry nutrients through your body and flush out your (and baby’s) waste. Tired of chugging plain water? Sparkling water, fruit-infused H20 and even watermelon smoothies (just blend watermelon with a bit of frozen berries) are excellent alternatives to not-so-appetizing flat water.

Keep Up With Your (Pregnancy-Safe) Workouts

In addition to healthy pregnancy snacks, you’ll want to continue exercising. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, you should aim to gain between 25 and 35 pounds during your pregnancy if you’re of normal BMI. If you’re underweight or overweight, the recommended weight gain should fluctuate by about 5 to 10 pounds, respectively.

Exercising throughout your pregnancy not only helps you manage a healthy pregnancy weight gain—it also prepares your body for the strain of carrying and delivering a baby and builds the stamina you’ll need after childbirth, when you’re constantly lifting and cradling your (often not-so-light) newborn.

So what workouts are pregnancy-friendly? There are plenty of ways to stay fit safely—from prenatal yoga classes to walking, swimming and more. Anja Pierre, a personal trainer in New York City, recommends focusing on exercises like planks and squats that utilize the core and the pelvic floor. Try moves that engage the glutes and shoulders and work on the proper alignment of the spine, which in turn preps you for carrying your growing frontal load. “You’ll rely on total body strength to perform tasks you never thought twice about, like opening a door, getting out of a cab or getting out of bed,” Pierre says. “Start working those arms if you haven’t already!”

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You’ll want to avoid contact sports and activities where you’re more likely to fall, like skiing and horseback riding, and steer away from exercises in a poorly ventilated space, like hot yoga and even spinning. “The fetus is vulnerable, so you don’t want to be in a situation where you can quickly overheat,” Pierre says. “Stay hydrated and maintain your body temperature at a normal level.” She also nixes crunches, since “they’re really not as effective as people think, and they can lead to abdominal separation.” Above all else, listen to your body; if any type of exercise or movement causes pain, stop immediately.

Start Saving—Stat

Once you see those parallel lines on your positive pregnancy test, it’s time to take a closer look at your bottom line. “Congratulations! You’re going to have a baby! Now start saving for college,” Romans says. “I’m not kidding even a little bit. You have just 18 years to squirrel away the money for a college education (and they go by quickly!).” Sure, thinking about a 529 plan instead of muslin blankets isn’t super-exciting, but it’s the responsible thing to do—and it doesn’t mean you can’t also enjoy indulging your nesting instinct with cute crib sheets, tiny onesies and other registry goodies.

Of course, it’s not just college you’ll have to start saving for: The first few years of baby’s life can be shockingly expensive. Want to guess how much? According to a 2019 survey, most people thought baby’s first year typically costs around $9,400. Sorry, but not even close—that survey found it’s more like $13,200, and others say it can be even more. But don’t freak out: There are plenty of ways to shop smart and save like a savvy parent-to-be.

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Brush Up on Your Maternity Leave Options

What else is on the list of what to do after a positive pregnancy test? Head to the benefits department. Once you’ve shared the news with your employer, learn about maternity leave and insurance perks. “Depending on your policies, there could be lactation consultant home visits, a free nutritionist, prenatal vitamins, even a free breast milk pump,” Romans says. At a minimum, the Family and Medical Leave Act allows you to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave (as long as you’ve been with the company for at least a year and your employer meets certain federal requirements). Make sure to ask when and how to add baby to your health insurance, since a newborn is only eligible for enrollment within the first 30 days after birth and won’t be subject to any preexisting conditions, even if they have one.

Now that you know what to do after a positive pregnancy test, you can feel a little less panicked and a lot more empowered. You have time, so be kind to yourself and take it milestone by milestone. Prioritize your health and happiness, and everything else will fall into place. You’ve got this.

Precautions To Be Taken After Positive Pregnancy Test

During the first 6 to 10 weeks of your pregnancy, your body goes through many changes. Your baby grows very quickly, even though you can’t feel it yet. You may start to feel different, both in your body and your emotions. Because each pregnancy is unique, there’s no right way to feel. You may feel the healthiest you’ve ever been, or you might feel tired or sick to your stomach (“morning sickness”).

These early weeks are a time to make healthy choices and to eat the best foods for you and your baby.

This is also a good time to think about birth defects testing. These are tests done during pregnancy to look for possible problems with the baby. First-trimester tests for birth defects can be done between 10 and 13 weeks of pregnancy, depending on the test. Talk with your doctor about what kinds of tests are available.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It’s also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

Eat well

Go to Canada’s Food Guide at https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/ to make sure you are eating a variety of foods each day. In your second and third trimesters most women will need to eat more of these healthy foods for healthy weight gain. Talk to your doctor or midwife about what is right for you.

  • Eat at least 3 meals and 2 healthy snacks every day. Eat fresh, whole foods, including:
    • Vegetables and fruits. Be sure to include a variety of colours. Try pears, apples, berries, broccoli, cabbage, and leafy greens.
    • Whole grain foods. Enjoy a variety of whole grains including quinoa, whole grain pasta, whole grain bread, oatmeal, or brown rice.
    • Protein foods. Try protein foods like eggs, beans, fish, poultry, lean meat, peanut butter, milk, fortified soy beverages, yogurt, and cheese.
    • Healthy fats. Choose foods with healthy fats like nuts, seeds, avocado, fatty fish, and corn or olive oil.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Make water your drink of choice. Avoid sodas and other sweetened drinks.
  • Choose foods that have important vitamins for your baby, such as calcium, iron, and folate.
    • Dairy products, tofu, canned fish with bones, almonds, broccoli, dark leafy greens, corn tortillas, and fortified orange juice are good sources of calcium.
    • Beef, poultry, liver, spinach, lentils, dried beans, fortified cereals, and dried fruits are rich in iron.
    • Dark leafy greens, broccoli, asparagus, liver, fortified cereals, orange juice, peanuts, and almonds are good sources of folate.
  • Choose fish that are lower in mercury. These include salmon, rainbow trout, pollock, herring, shrimp, mussels, clams, oysters, and canned “light” tuna.
  • Avoid foods that could harm your baby.
    • Do not eat raw or undercooked meat, chicken, or fish (such as sushi or raw oysters).
    • Do not eat raw eggs or foods that contain raw eggs, such as Caesar dressing.
    • Do not eat raw sprouts, especially alfalfa sprouts.
    • Do not eat soft cheeses and unpasteurized dairy foods, such as Brie, feta, or blue cheese.
    • Limit how much high-mercury fish you eat.
      • Do not eat more than 150 g (5.3 oz) of high-mercury fish in a month. These include fresh or frozen tuna (not canned “light” tuna), shark, swordfish, marlin, orange roughy, and escolar.
      • Do not eat more than 300 g (10.6 oz) of canned (white) albacore tuna each week.
    • Avoid caffeine, or limit your intake to 300 mg or about 2 cups of coffee or tea each day.

Protect yourself and your baby

  • Do not touch kitty litter or cat feces. They can cause an infection that could harm your baby.
  • High body temperature can be harmful to your baby. So if you want to use a sauna or hot tub, be sure to talk to your doctor or midwife about how to use it safely.

Cope with morning sickness

  • Sip small amounts of water, juices, or shakes. Try drinking between meals, not with meals.
  • Eat 5 or 6 small meals a day. Try dry toast or crackers when you first get up, and eat breakfast a little later.
  • Avoid spicy, greasy, and fatty foods.
  • When you feel sick, open your windows or go for a short walk to get fresh air.
  • Try nausea wristbands. These help some people.
  • Tell your doctor or midwife if you think your prenatal vitamins make you sick.

Can a Positive Pregnancy Test Be Wrong

Could a positive result be wrong?

Although rare, it’s possible to get a positive result from a home pregnancy test when you’re not actually pregnant. This is known as a false-positive.

A false-positive might happen if you had a pregnancy loss soon after the fertilized egg attached to your uterine lining (biochemical pregnancy) or you take a pregnancy test too soon after taking a fertility drug that contains HCG. An ectopic pregnancy, menopause or problems with your ovaries also might contribute to misleading test results.

Could a negative result be wrong?

It’s possible to get a negative result from a home pregnancy test when you’re actually pregnant. This is known as a false-negative. You might get a false-negative if you:

  • Take the test too early. The earlier after a missed period that you take a home pregnancy test, the harder it is for the test to detect HCG. For the most accurate results, repeat the test one week after a missed period. If you can’t wait that long, ask your health care provider for a blood test.
  • Check test results too soon. Give the test time to work. Consider setting a timer according to the package instructions.
  • Use diluted urine. For the most accurate results, take the test first thing in the morning — when your urine is the most concentrated.

What happens next?

Based on your test results, consider taking the following steps:

  • Your home pregnancy test is positive, or you’ve taken a few home pregnancy tests and gotten mixed results. Make an appointment with your health care provider. You might need a blood test or ultrasound to confirm your pregnancy. The sooner your pregnancy is confirmed, the sooner you can begin prenatal care.
  • Your home pregnancy test is negative. If your period doesn’t begin, repeat the test in a few days or one week — especially if you took the test before or shortly after a missed period.
  • You continue to get negative test results, but your period doesn’t begin or you still think you might be pregnant. Check with your health care provider. Many factors can lead to missed menstrual periods (amenorrhea), including thyroid disorders, low body weight, problems with your ovaries, excessive exercise and stress. If you’re not pregnant, your health care provider can help you get your menstrual cycle back on track.

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