Dollar store pregnancy tests give accurate results – but you have to wait longer after a missed period to use them.
Common pregnancy tests available on the shelves of drugstores and big-box stores can cost between $10 to $20. For women who are regularly testing for pregnancy, those dollars add up. Many “dollar stores” sell pregnancy tests for a fraction of the price – but can you trust the results of a dollar store pregnancy test?
The answer is: sort of.
Pregnancy tests work by detecting the presence of a hormone called hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin). As you probably learned in high school health class, the woman’s egg travels down the Fallopian tube to the uterus where it meets up and is fertilized by the sperm. Then it attaches itself to the wall of the uterus. At that point, it begins to produce hCG.
All pregnancy tests work by detecting HCG in a woman’s body. The dollar store tests work like any others. Women pee into a cup and use the pipette to drop urine into the slot and wait for urine to travel up the strip. It takes about three minutes for results to complete. The test will detect hCG levels from 20mIU/ml. One line is a negative result. Two lines is a positive result, even if the second line is faint.
The difference is the dollar store brand of pregnancy tests is that they need more hCG to detect it – which takes more time. The test is 99% accurate but is not as sensitive as other tests so the hCG will have to build up more before the test will pick up on it. The most accurate results will occur if you wait until your period is about a week late.
If the test is positive, you can jump for joy and have a glass of sparkling cider. But before you announce the news on Facebook or pick out baby names, be sure to schedule an appointment with your doctor to confirm the result. A medical professional will be able to give you a definite answer and good advice about how to take care of yourself once the answer is a true “yes.”
So, do the dollar store pregnancy tests work? The answer is yes if you are patient. They can be an economical way to monitor your progress when trying to conceive a little bundle of joy. Don’t forget to wait that extra week, though, and always follow up with a healthcare professional.
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