I have never used a pregnancy test kit until I was trying for a baby. Yes, so imagine just how suaku I was when I finally had my virgin experience of using the pee stick. Haha, it’s like how my best friend described it: “a very adult thing to do”. 😀
There are lots of pregnancy test kits out there in the market and here is some information for the first-timers. (So you wouldn’t feel so self-conscious standing in the aisle trying to figure out which to buy.)
The most no-frills test kit has got to be the test strips. They come a few in a packet.
What you do with these is, collect your urine in a cup then dip a stick in.
A step up from the test strips is the cassette test kit.
These come with a dropper for your to siphon a little urine to drop it in the test window (as seen on the left of the cassette).
I find it a hassle to have to collect my urine in a cup so of course I went straight for the fuss-free test kit.
These are so easy to use. All you have to do is uncap the end where the test strip is, then position it where your stream of urine is coming down. You just need to hold it there for a few seconds for it to be thoroughly wet and that’s it. Cap it up and wait for the results. It only takes a few minutes for the result to show. A little caution here: do not panic if you see like the results portion getting “wet”. You didn’t do anything wrong, it’s just the urine travelling down the test site. Just wait patiently…
Here’s what the results look like:
The control band should always show unless you’re doing it wrong and the test is invalid. One line (just the control band) means a BFN. Two lines means a BFP.
Some test kits use a ‘+’ sign to indicate that you’re pregnant.
If you just want to get rid of any confusion and/or you don’t mind spending more, you can also try the digital test kit. So far I’ve only seen Clear Blue having it.
How do these pregnancy test kits work?
When you are pregnant, your body begins to produce a hormone called human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG), which is present in your urine. What the test kit does is detect the presence of hCG in your urine.
My menstrual cycle is regular so when I missed my period by three days, I got a little excited. Time to try the pregnancy test kit. I think I was more excited trying the test kit for the first time. XD
Being the cheapskate I am, I bought the cheapest stick in the pharmacy — Watson’s house brand. A single stick costs $6. A box of two costs $9. Despite hearing all the talk of how branded sticks are more accurate, I just couldn’t bear to spend more on a branded stick like Clear Blue, which was going at twice the price. My logic was what if I tested negative? Then I would have wasted money.
Did the routine of placing the stick in my stream of pee. Capped it, then waited a few minutes for the results. Of course I was secretly hoping for two lines.
The moment of truth…
Say what?! The second line is so faint. So is that a yes or a no? If anything is worse than a negative, it’s this. Had to send this picture to my best friend to confirm whether it’s a yes or no. She said a no should be very clear — the portion where the test band should be, would remain freakin’ snow white. Hmmmm…maybe I was a bit too kan chiong in testing. Maybe I should have waited a week, just in case my period is late.
I went to see a GP about a week later, thinking that he would do a more advanced test on my urine. Erm, no. He used the cassette test kit and it still showed positive. This time the second line was darker. So yes, I am pregnant. Meh. And I had to pay $14 for that test kit. Had I known earlier, I wouldn’t even have gone to see a GP.
Anyway, that was the suaku me. I later read that there can be false negatives (you’re pregnant but the test kit shows negative), but never false positives (you’re not pregnant but the test kit shows positive). That result I first got was valid and a confirmation that I am indeed pregnant.
Why was the second line so faint?
I did the test very early in my pregnancy and hCG takes time to “multiply”, so the level of hCG in my body wasn’t high enough yet to give me a “strong positive”.
Are branded test kits more accurate?
I don’t think so. There hasn’t been any study (at least not that I know of) to show that certain test kits are more accurate than others.
Moral of the story:
- Wait a week or two after you’ve missed your period to be really sure that you’re pregnant.
- There’s no point going to a GP because the doctor is just going to use the same test kit to test your urine with. Only go to see a GP at the polyclinic if you intend to go the subsidised route for later check ups and delivery at the hospital. You will need a referral letter in that case.