Homemade pregnancy tests

Although this is very rare nowadays, in the past homemade pregnancy tests were very common; pregnancy has been an important part of women’s lives for many centuries now and people discovered ways of testing for pregnancy, just like we have used modern technology to produce a range of tests today.

Egyptian women tested their urine to see if it could make seeds grow; if the seeds grew, the woman was believed to be pregnant but if the seeds failed to grow she was not pregnant. Medieval women tested the colour of the urine to test for pregnancy; a clear, lemon colour was thought to indicate that a baby was on the way. By the 19th century, women were relying on common symptoms of pregnancy to determine whether they were pregnant or not; we still use these symptoms, including tender breasts, missed periods, nausea and aches, to detect pregnancy today.

In the 20th century, the pregnancy hormone was identified and testing became much more accurate. However, some women shunned testing and instead relied on their intuition, claiming that they simply felt different when they were pregnant (this is most common amongst women that have already had children).


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