Narong Jongsirikul/Fotolia

What Time Of Day Should You Take A Pregnancy Test? An Expert Explains

Ad failed to load

In our "just Google it," two-day shipping world, it's hard to wait for results. So when you decide you're ready to get pregnant, nothing is harder than waiting to see if it worked — you want to take the at-home test as soon as possible. If it's negative, you think, "maybe I tested too early" or "perhaps I didn't do it under the best conditions." Hoping to get a positive result the second time around, you're probably curious — what time of day should you take a pregnancy test? Experts say you don't have to rearrange your schedule before peeing.

"There is no 'best time of day' to take a home urine pregnancy test," Adrienne Zertuche, OB-GYN at Atlanta Women's Healthcare Specialists, tells Romper. "Your urine’s level of beta-HCG (the pregnancy hormone) does not fluctuate throughout the day, and the ability of the test to detect beta-HCG is unlikely to be affected by the concentration of your urine." So while you may have heard that first thing in the morning is the best time to test, there is no advantage to testing during your first bathroom break of the day. Whether you take the test on your lunch break, after you get home from work, or in the middle of the night because you're too anxious with anticipation to sleep — the results will be the same and as accurate as possible.

Ad failed to load

While time of day isn't important, the date you test on does matter. According to Zertuche, "The most important aspect of 'timing' for a pregnancy test is when you take the test relative to when you expect to get your menses. Whether you are trying to conceive, or whether you are not ready for a child but had a condom mishap and could not access Plan B, I do not recommend taking a home urine pregnancy test until at least one to two days after you expect your menses to start." This can be challenging if your period is irregular, or your body is still adjusting after years of being on the pill. Keeping track of your cycle or charting your fertility can help give you a clue as to when "Aunt Flo" is due to arrive.

If you do end up disappointed by a negative test, it's not crazy to hold out hope. Zertuche explains that "the most common cause of a falsely negative pregnancy test is one that is taken too early. Home urine pregnancy tests are variable in their ability to detect beta-HCG, and this hormone starts off at a very low level and rises over time. If your test results are negative, but you continue to suspect that you might be pregnant, you should repeat the test in one week." Yes, you will spend that week in agonizing suspense, but if you're rewarded with a positive result, you'll soon forget how hard it was to wait.

Ad failed to load

Although my oldest is about to turn 4, I still remember some of the anxiety and impatience I felt during the year it took me to get pregnant. I felt like I had waited for the time in my life when I was ready to have a child, so why did I have to wait any longer? I obsessed over all the details of timing, and took more than one test each month, hoping that the first negative was only because I'd tested too early. What I don't remember anymore is the timing of the positive test — was it a few days after my missed period or a week? These details that are once so important lose their vividness as they are replaced by the details of your pregnancy and delivery — the stories you will tell your children for years to come.

Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Ad failed to load

Check out the entire Romper's Doula Diaries series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

6 Early Signs You're Going To Have A Short Labor, According To Experts

As far as I'm concerned, a short labor is right up there with winning the lottery in terms of lucky life events. (And when I was actually in labor, I would absolutely have traded a bucketful of lottery winnings for a speedier birth.) While some women…
By Kelly Mullen-McWilliams

Kids Will Love These TV Shows & Movies Coming To Netflix In March

You can always count on Netflix to keep it fresh: though there are already so many movies and shows to choose from, every month there's an influx of new content to keep your entire family entertained. As February enters its final weeks, it's time to …
By Megan Walsh

Here Are 10 Ways To Boost Your Baby's Immunity To The Flu

As I'm sure you've read in the thousands upon thousands of articles written about it this winter, the flu is spreading like wildfire and it's bad. Really bad. This strand of flu is the worst we've had in a very long time and it's the most widespread,…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Khloé Kardashian Asked Twitter About Her Bump, & Moms Totally Delivered

Like her younger sister Kylie Jenner, Khloé Kardashian managed to keep most of her pregnancy a sort-of secret. But unlike Jenner, Kardashian chose to publicly announce her pregnancy several months before the baby's due date. While there's no wrong wa…
By Sophie Hirsh

21 Moms Share The Most Surprising Part About Having A C-Section

Honestly, I don't think we, as a culture, talk about C-sections nearly enough, especially considering so many mothers experience them. And because of a number of factors, the little we do talk about it always seems to be a familiar narrative: "It's n…
By Jamie Kenney

13 Yummy Instant Pot Recipes To Make Under 30 Minutes

An Instant Pot seems to be the must-have appliance in every kitchen these days. If you are anything like me and never knew the beauty of a Instant Pot, you are about to have your life changed. Basically, you put some ingredients into a pot, set the t…
By Kristin Manna

9 Things The First Six Months Of Motherhood Will Teach You About Your Baby

Personally, the first six months of motherhood was a mixed bag. I learned some harsh lessons about myself that made taking care of my baby seem overwhelming. For example, I was clueless, and no amount of research could help me feel like anything but …
By Steph Montgomery

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack