I decided to write about ovulation kits today. There is such a huge choice of ovulation kits available now, that it can be quite confusing which one to go for.
What are ovulation test kits ?
They all work by testing urine for the presence of Luteinising Hormone (LH). LH is the hormone that is released just prior to ovulation and the ovulation test kits detect the LH surge.
This is great because it gives you prior warning of when you are going to ovulate. Research has shown that if you have intercourse just prior to ovulation the sperm are waiting for the egg and that this can increase the chances of conception. This also gives you opportunity to have intercourse on the 3-4 most fertile days of your cycle which again increases the chances of conceiving.
Urine LH test kits are not to be confused with other ovulation detectors that tell you that you have ovulated but do not give you prior notice (ie basal temperature monitoring and saliva ovulation microscopes)
What types of ovulation kits are there ?
There are 3 basics types of urine ovulation kit. They are midstream ovulation kits, cassette ovulation test kits, and ovulation test strips.
The midstream ovulation test kit is the most expensive type of kit. In a midstream ovulation test kit the strip is enclosed in a plastic casing and the user urinates directly on to ovulation tester.Advantages of the midstream test kits are that they are discreet. You do not need to collect a urine sample and they can be performed easily (by most women) in any toilet. Only fiddly bit for some can be directing the urine stream onto the tester without getting splashed with urine (I speak from experience-lol)
The urine is then absorbed by the test strip encased in the sampler and the result read after several minutes. Most tests are interpreted using the appearnace of two lines, except the digital ovulation test kits which give a definite yesy you have ovulated rather than two lines for you to interpret.
Ovulation Test Cassette Kits are a mid price test. They are more complicated to use than the ovulation midstream or ovulation test strips, however there is less likelyhood of user error performing the test as you use a pipette to add exactly the correct quantitiy of urine. They are very popular with research labs or clinics performing multiple tests as they are highly accurate and give consistent results.
Ovulation Test Stips are the cheapest type of ovulation kits and for some the simplest. You simply dip the test strip into a fresh urine sample, and read the result, after the set time, by interpreting the appearance or not of two lines on the test strip.
Advantages to this type of ovulation test kit is that they are much cheaper to manufacture and therefore much cheaper to buy, although usually just as accurate. Disadvantages are that they require you to collect a urine sample into a container. If you are at work or out and about this is going to be trickier unless you have a very big handbag. If you are testing at work it may be simpler to use a midstream ovulation test kit !
My top tips for performing urine ovulation test kits
1) Always make sure you read the instruction for the ovulation test kit that you are using, before performing the test, as they do vary from test to test, and the time at which you read the result is of significance.
2) Use a timer if possible so you read the test at the correct time. This could be trickier if you are doing it in the toilet at work ! Some of those timers are very loud-lol
3) As you will be performing the ovulation tests over several days, try to perform the ovulation test at the same time each day
4) I have found that it is best not to have a drink for 2 hours before I perform a LH test
5) make sure the place you are performing the test is well lit-this helps in two ways-you can see what you are doing so the likelyhood of getting urine all over the floor or all over you is reduced, and it makes interpreting the test much easier if you can see it properly.
6) If you are testing over several months, it may be worth trying different type or brand of ovulation test kits each month until you find the one that suits your needs & your budget the best.