Whether you are an adult seeking sexual health or a young adult searching how to get STD tested without your parents knowing, everyone should feel free to get tested without judgment. Even though getting tested shows maturity and accountability, some still find the process uncomfortable or even embarrassing.
Due to the social stigma, there are many people who either delay getting tested or do not know how to set up an appointment. Of course, people should feel lost when taking responsibility for their health. This article will discuss the different ways to be tested for STDs and the benefits of each.
It is recommended by the Center for Disease and Prevention Control (CDC) that all sexually active persons get tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) at least once a year. This practice of active awareness puts both you and your partner(s) sexual health first. Being tested identifies any infection and the needed treatment while preventing the spread of STDs.
Heading to one of your regular physicians for testing may be the first idea that comes to mind. This could be your primary care physician or a specialized physician, such as a gynecologist, a women’s sexual health specialist, or a urologist, a men’s sexual health specialist.
Getting tested at a doctor’s office provides accurate results by trained professionals as well as treatment options when needed. However, this is not the most discrete method of getting tested. Many people feel uncomfortable going out in public to get tested or may feel uncomfortable discussing testing with their established physician. While some doctor’s offices and clinics check-in staff have discreet methods of asking for the purpose of the visit, some staff ask without the consideration of privacy. The speed of getting your test results can vary greatly and range from 3 to 10 business days.
For those who wish for a higher level of privacy, at-home tests may be a good choice for basic testing. There are products that can be purchased online or in stores such as Walgreens and CVS. With this method of testing, you can administer the test yourself in the comfort of your home.
No need for the awkward silence as you wait for the cashier to check your items; the kit can be ordered online and shipped to your front door. However, caution should be taken when purchasing at-home tests online as many are not certified. Inaccurate results are also a possibility due to user error. While at-home tests can answer whether or not you have an STD or STI, your options for pursuing treatment for positive results can be limited.
Other establishments that offer STD testing include walk-in clinics, such as urgent care centers or Planned Parenthood. These clinics are often reported to be inexpensive or free, depending on the location. Similar to doctor’s offices, you should expect accurate results from these tests. Another benefit is that a walk-in clinic is great for investigating STD symptoms that might easily be confused with symptoms of other illnesses.
However, walk-in clinics admit patients on a first-come, first-serve basis. This means that there may be an extended wait, which can be inconvenient for people with full-time jobs. Another similarity to doctor’s offices would be price. Depending on your access to insurance, the fee for the visit, tests and any necessary prescriptions can vary. This method may also not be the best idea if your goal is to remain discrete; the lab may call or mail the results and billing to your phone, email or physical home address.
A fourth option for sexually transmitted disease testing involves online testing. Online testing with Priority STD Testing offers a way to order STD lab tests online. Professional care counselors are available by phone or chat to provide support. Once you have placed the order, an extensive network of FDA-approved testing centers (labs) are available for your visit. These testing centers provide a number of different kinds of testing, so your reason for visiting will be confidential and not obvious to other people at the center.
Testing at these centers will never involve invasive procedures or visual examinations, just simple urine and blood tests. Once the testing center has these samples, you should receive fast and accurate results within 24 to 72 hours in a confidential manner. The results will never be mailed to a physical address.
If there is concern that you may have contracted an STD, it is best to get tested as soon as possible. Getting tested sooner rather than later can avoid future complications with your sexual health. No one should have to feel embarrassed in order to stay healthy.