Should I do a pregnancy test?

If you think you might be pregnant but aren't sure you should definitely do a pregnancy test.

If you've missed a period or had unprotected sex there's a chance you might be pregnant — taking a pregnancy test will tell you whether you are or not.

What does a pregnancy test do?

Pregnancy tests look at the levels of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (or HCG) in your body. If you're pregnant your levels of HCG will be higher and can be detected in your urine.

When should I do a pregnancy test?

Most home pregnancy tests should be done on the day, or day after, your next period is due. If you're not sure of the date of your next period, do the test at least 21 days from when you last had unprotected sex.

Where can I get a pregnancy test?

You can buy pregnancy tests from chemists and many supermarkets. You can also buy them online, Boots has a range of pregnancy tests starting from a few pounds up to around £15.

Alternatively, if you'd like someone to do the pregnancy test for you, you could:

  • Pay a chemist to do one for you
    You need to take a sample of your urine to a pharmacy for the chemist to test.
    Please note that the pot you use must be absolutely clean before you use it so that nothing interferes with the accuracy of the test result.
  • You can get a free pregnancy test, and someone to check the result for you, at any of the Pregnancy Choices centres providing free pregnancy tests

    OR

    You can get a free pregnancy test at your local NHS walk-in health centre (this link will take you away from Pregnancy Choices Directory)
  • Ask your local GP surgery. Not all practices provide free pregnancy tests these days but some still do.
  • Try your local community contraceptive clinic.
  • Visit a sexual health or genitourinary medicine clinic (GUM clinic)

Try to prepare yourself for the fact that you might actually be pregnant. Even though you suspect you're pregnant, positive confirmation from a pregnancy test might still be a big shock. It would be a good idea to have someone you trust with you, just for a bit of support, just in case.

What do I do if the pregnancy test is positive?

If the pregnancy test is positive the next step really depends on the type of person you are, but in all cases getting more information can remove some of the unknowns and help you feel more in control.

Talking to somebody with experience of the issues around unplanned pregnancy can often help you understand what you should do next.

You can get more info by contacting any of the centres listed on the Pregnancy Choices Directory map page.

Check the list of centres to find one near you. You'll be able to talk to them in complete confidence.

Where can I get support and more information?

Further support is available from these places:

  • NHS Direct
    Ring them on 111 or visit their website at www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk (clicking this link will take you away from the Pregnancy Choices Directory website)
  • NHS walk-in centre
    You can visit your local NHS walk-in centre — find your nearest centre on their website at www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk (clicking this link will take you away from the Pregnancy Choices Directory website).
  • Visit your local sexual health clinic
  • Talk to your GP

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