STD Testing- What You Need to Know

The identification and knowledge of sexually transmitted diseases has continued to grow every year. People are becoming more aware of the danger of STDs constantly. Education is the first step towards prevention when it comes to STDs.

When people are aware of the potential diseases they can get and how they can get them, they avoid them and actually think through the consequences.

Many STDs and STIs have no obvious symptoms. People are almost completely unaware when they contact them. This is part of the reason that people need to get tested. Testing is the only sure way for a person to know that they have one.

Where to Get Tested for STDs

A lot of people aren’t sure of where they should get tested for STDs or STIs. Many seem to believe that they are tested every year at their annual checkup. The truth is that this is only rarely the case. Annual checkups typically only include cursory examinations.

There are options for testing. Typically people should see their family doctor when it comes time for STD tests. Alternatively you can also go see an STD clinic.

STD Clinics

There are many clinics that specialize in testing and lab work specifically for STDs and STIs. These clinics have the entire procedure on site and this allows patients to have the process completed quickly and discreetly.

There are many different tests that can sometimes need to be completed, so it can be very convenient for people if a clinic has all of the tests at the exact same location. Additionally some people don’t feel comfortable discussing their sexual history with their family doctor.

Common STD Tests

Unsurprisingly, for every STD, there is also a test that can be completed to determine if someone has contracted it.

  • Chlamydia Test - Chlamydia is a very common STD. Unlike some other STD tests, this one is taken by either urine or by swabbing the genitals. Additional tests may need to be done if oral or anal sex was the primary method of infection.
  • Gonorrhea Test - Like chlamydia, gonorrhea is also tested in a similar fashion. In addition there are also the oral or anal transmission tests that may need to be completed as well.
  • Herpes Test - Herpes is one of the more complicated tests. Rather than a standard test, there are actually two tests that could be performed. If it seems like there might be symptoms, then the test is done with a swab of the symptomatic area. This can quickly determine the results. If there are no symptoms, then a full blood test must be done with blood drawn from the arm.
  • HIV Test - HIV tests are typically completed by a cheek swab. However depending on the person, they may also need to conduct a blood test to check for HIV.

Typically tests will take approximately two weeks until the results come in. During that time, sexual intercourse should be avoided until the results are final.

Anonymous STD Testing

There are many people who prefer to have their STD testing done anonymously. While that can’t happen for every test, there are many clinics that will actually allow it. Anonymous testing is often not covered under health insurance and will have to be paid out of pocket. 

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