A large number of women seldom consider or even think about the fact that a pregnancy test, like most other products available in the market come with an expiration date. There is a set time frame after which the test automatically expires.
When do pregnancy tests expire?
The most appropriate answer to this query is that it varies. All the available pregnancy tests normally last for anywhere between two to three years after production. It has been noted that the less costly pregnancy tests tend to have a much reduced shelf life. They last no more than two years once packaged and ready for the market. The more costly brands normally last for 3 years before expiring. With this said, you should be careful and never assume that a pregnancy test will function well due to the fact that it was purchased no more than a year ago. The reason for this is because the said product may have been placed in a store for a period of two years which means it may have expired.
Why do pregnancy tests expire?
The main reason why pregnancy tests expire is due to the fact that the chemical used to identify the amount of the pregnancy hormone, HCG present in the urine is not effective in its ability to detect. Once this chemical present in the test loses its ability and effectiveness, the chances of the test working as expected is impossible. This has left a good number of women wondering why these tests expire.
Basically, the date of expiration present in all pregnancy tests usually includes the year and month of expiration. A good example would be an expiration date showing 8/2014. This would be interpreted that the test would expire in August with the year being 2014. This has always been quite confusing for a good number of women who are left wondering whether the test expires by the first or last day of August. The answer to this is concern is that the product will no longer be usable by the 1st day of the following month. Therefore going with the stated example, the pregnancy test would be considered unusable by the October 1st. However, there are a number of women who tend to be extra careful and never use a test on the 1st day of the stated expiration month.
If a pregnancy test is expired is it still accurate?
By using August as an example of the expiration date, let’s talk accuracy. A good number of women often question and are interested to know whether or not a pregnancy test basically stops working on the stated date or maybe a day after? In as much as manufacturers of pregnancy tests recommend having the tests thrown away after the stated date of expiration. Using a test which expires in August on the 1st of September might still provide you with accurate results. However, this is not highly recommended.
The main reason for this is because it may probably have been packaged and been on a shelf for no less than 2 or 3 years. As previously stated, by this time the ingredient responsible for detecting HCG loses its power and effectiveness. Therefore in order to avoid getting a false negative or false positive result, you should discard the test. This will get rid of any lingering doubts that you may have.
Do EPT pregnancy tests expire?
EPT is an acronym for early pregnancy test. This type of pregnancy has a high sensitivity level when it comes to detecting HCG the pregnancy hormone. Such tests are able to detect low levels of HCG which is usually the case quite early in the pregnancy. In some cases it is even capable of giving accurate results before a woman misses her period. A large number of women often question on whether or not this type of pregnancy tests expire. The answer to this question is yes.
Just like the standard pregnancy test which includes an active ingredient which works to detect HCG, the same applies for early pregnancy tests. The only difference between the two is that the latter has an active ingredient which is highly sensitive. A good example is clearblue pregnancy test. It has the ability to test and give accurate results when a test is done as early as 4 days prior to a missed period. It is a digital test and requires no interpretation of the results since it clearly indicates “pregnant” when the result is positive. When using a regular pregnancy test, two blue lines present on the display windows is interpreted as a positive result. In some cases the lines are quite faint leaving a woman with a lot of doubts as to whether or not she maybe pregnant.
It is also important for you to always check on the wrappers placed on the pregnancy test purchased. There are a few occasions even though uncommon where manufacturers unintentionally place a test inside a box with a totally different expiry date. An example would be having the expiration date on the package stating August 2014 while that on the wrapper indicating September 2014. If you happen to come across such, it is safer to take the closest date as the expiration date. As it is always said, better safe than sorry.
Other than the sensitivity level, price and accuracy of a pregnancy test, it is now clear to see that expiry date is a critical factor when it comes to selecting the correct pregnancy test. From the information presented, it is clear to see that taking a test using an expired pregnancy test is as good as not taking one in the first place. For this reason as earlier stated, the first thing you should look at when out shopping for a pregnancy test is confirm on its expiration test. When not sure about it even after looking at the manufacturers expiration date stated on the product you can confirm this information with the shop attendant for clarity purposes. After this has been confirmed, you will be able to purchase your home pregnancy test. With such a test you will be able to get accurate results as long as all the instructions presented are followed to the letter.