The subject of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) is a sensitive one, for sure. Whilst we need to be aware and open about these issues, in order to prevent or manage them, we also need to be aware that embarrassment and a lack of symptoms can be a barrier to someone seeking help, which may turn into a more serious issue in the future.
A doctor will usually only test for STDs if the person is either pregnant, they suspect they may have been exposed to an STD, or they are experiencing some symptoms which could be associated. If however you feel that you may have been exposed, but you’re too worried to go to the doctor, or too embarrassed, what do you do?
There are many home testing kits available nowadays, which cut out the embarrassment, and make it possible for everyone to get treatment, should they need it, without ignoring a potential issue which could cause serious problems in the future.
Most home testing kits come with the following items:
- A sterile urine collection cup
- Instructions on what to do
- Instructions on how to transport your urine sample to the laboratory
- A pre-paid envelope in which to send your sample
How to Home Test
Every kit will be subtly different, so always check the actual directions which are sent with the kit. Overall however, most kits will require you to give a urine sample, into the sterile cup which is supplied with the kit, before sending it to the laboratory to be tested in one STD clinic. From there, you will wait around 2 to 3 days for your results, which will be communicated to you either by accessing a secure online portal, or a phone call. If you do require treatment, then the laboratory will contact your doctor for the correct treatment, or they will directly contact the pharmacy, ready for you to pick up.
This service is totally personal and totally confidential, however it is not fool proof. These test do not cover HIV or hepatitis, which can only be detected by a blood test taken by your doctor, and they do not differentiate between some other common STDs. What they do however, is pick up and flag any other issues, without you needing to make an embarrassing visit to your doctor’s surgery.
Whilst some people are still on the fence about STD home testing kits, there is no denying that making it easier for everyone to be able to check whether they have any issues is a positive step indeed. Too many are too worried to venture to the doctor’s for such a test, out of fear or embarrassment, but the actual focus on doing it in the home, takes much of that away.