Now that we have gotten past ovulation and how it works, let’s pretend we did just ovulate, and the big question is: “could I be pregnant?” Well, that is where the two week wait comes in and boy is it fun (not really)! If you have been trying to conceive, you are probably aware of how painful that waiting game is. For those of you that don’t know, the two-week wait is the period in which a pregnancy test take to turn positive. However, there are so many other factors that come into play. This two-week wait is based on the assumption you ovulated two weeks before your next period, or basically in the middle of your cycle. After explaining the process of ovulation in an earlier post, not every woman ovulates in the middle of her cycle. For the sake of arguing, let us pretend that we ovulated on cycle day 14 and our period is due in two weeks. So, we can move on to discussing implantation, symptom spotting, and finally testing!
Implantation is the process in which it takes for the egg to implant into the uterus and start producing the pregnancy hormone “human chorionic gonadotropin,” also referred to as hCG. During ovulation, the egg travels down to the fallopian tubes waiting to be fertilized. If the egg gets fertilized, it will travel slowly in the fallopian tubes for a few days (three to four), and divide rapidly into a zygote.
Once it has reached zygote status, it will take another five to seven days to implant into the uterus and be considered an embryo.
Once the embryo implants, it starts producing hCG, but it might be too little to be detected on a home pregnancy test. Just keep in mind that every woman’s body is different and the amount of time this process takes will vary. Some will be sooner and of course, some will be later. However, the complete process takes an average of seven to ten days after ovulation. With my son, I was able to get a positive pregnancy test 9 days after ovulation and I didn’t even have any real symptoms!
While it is fun to symptom spot, doing it can be torture and may even cause you so much confusion.
Pregnancy symptoms and premenstrual symptoms are so very similar it can be hard to determine whether you are pregnant or just about to start your period. The truth is that if you are experiencing true pregnancy symptoms, a pregnancy test should be positive by this time. This is all depending on test sensitivity of course. However, I believe some women are so in tune with their bodies that they really know if they are pregnant or not. I am personally addicted to peeing on a stick (POAS) a few days after ovulation, I usually find out pretty early with no real symptoms other than implantation spotting.
Implantation spotting is a very real symptom and usually occurs a couple of days before your period or pretty close to it. So sometimes it can be mistaken as your period until it only lasts for a couple of days and it is light and short. Implantation spotting is usually pinkish brown in color and can last anywhere from a couple of hours to a couple of days. If you do have implantation spotting, a test should be pregnant within two to four days afterwards. Even though implantation spotting is only supposed to last for a couple of days, I had this spotting for a couple of weeks off and on during the first trimester (we will save that for another conversation).
Another symptom of implantation is the cramping. However, you could easily mistake that for pms cramps since it will happen close to the time of your expected period. During the second half of our cycle, progesterone takes control in preparation for an embryo to implant. The role progesterone takes on is to thicken the uterus should an embryo implant. However, the rise in estrogen can trigger symptoms such as: nausea, bloating, fatigue, breast tenderness, etc. So, you see, these symptoms could go either way. The best way to find out is to take a test!
Well, you made it to six days past ovulation and are gearing up to start testing (haha)! Seriously though, I think we all hope we are that early implanter and we can get a positive 6DPO! And, you get a negative result! Well, the good news is that you are not out yet as it could be too early or your test sensitivity is too high. Therefore, you will see tests that say, “test up to five days before your missed period.” They are basically informing you that they have a lower sensitivity threshold for hCG. However, the earlier you test the less accurate your test results could be if you are getting a negative result.
There are several tests on the market and I personally like to use both pink and blue dye tests. However, there are a lot of complaints about several of the tests on the market and I will be sure to give you that information (so be on the lookout for that post). The main one is that blue dye tests tend to give you a faint line, also known as an evaporation line or an indent. An evaporation line on a pregnancy test is when a line appears after the time limit leading you to believe you are pregnant when you are not. The indent line is sometimes a colorless line where the test strip is and can appear at any time. You may read that these lines are colorless or grey, but that is not always true. So, if you are going to test early, be sure to follow the test instructions and don’t go back to look at the test after you throw it away.
In a perfect world or perfect menstrual cycle, we would truly have a two week wait. Due to mother nature and the beauty of low sensitivity pregnancy tests, we may not have to wait the full fourteen days to find out if there is a bun in the oven. So, “could I be pregnant?”, you ask. Yes, my dear you very well could be if you are in the two-week wait. If you suspect you are pregnant and it is just too early to get a positive test, treat your body that way and just take care of yourself. As always, thanks for reading and baby dust to you!