A Question And Answer Guide On The HIV Home Test

HIV infection is rampant everywhere in the world. It is a sexually transmitted disease that can also be spread through blood transfusion, breast milk or needles. It is very important to know your status if you often find yourself having vaginal intercourse with different people or anal intercourse with men. The latter is usually a case of a man getting intimate with a man anally. If you are feeling shy or fearful, you can do a HIV home test.

What is the test about?

People have this option now and it has helped very many know about their HIV status without facing a doctor directly. In the US there is a HIV home test called OraQuick that is recognized by the FDA for over the counter use. It is an in-vitro investigative home use testing kit for HIV-1 and HIV-2. The user must test their oral fluid for antibodies. OraQuick should not be used with plasma, vaginal fluid, sweat, blood, semen, breast milk or urine.

For this HIV home test to work as intended, it should be used as instructed.

When should you check your status?

Perhaps you are wondering when to test for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus at home. The best time to use a recommended HIV home test kit such as the one mentioned above is at least three months after a suspected infection. This is why the doctors recommend getting regular tests if you often have intercourse without protection. Also those who share needles or syringes with other drug users should get tested often.

Women who suspect they are pregnant should attend all ante-natal clinics. HIV can be detected early enough in their body fluids and actions can be taken to protect the fetus. A HIV home test must be taken as soon as the risk event occurs. The risk event is defined in different ways as shown below.

• When a man or a woman has had intercourse with many people.
• When one has had intercourse with a person whose HIV status is unknown to them.
• When a person has gotten intimate with a person who is HIV positive.
• When two males have had anal intercourse.
• When people have injected their skin with illicit drugs via needles / syringes.
• If one does intercourse with strangers in exchange for money.
• In case you have been treated for other sexually transmitted diseases like syphilis, gonorrhoea, and hepatitis and so on.

Who else should use the testing kit at home?

Perhaps you are humbly married but for some reason you are suspecting that your spouse is seeing other people. Knowing your status via a HIV home test will be very important. Maybe you are pregnant and you just want to know you are healthy to protect your baby. Could it be that you are 17 and over teenager who is sexually active? Getting tested is a must-do thing in your case.

When will using a HIV home test be unnecessary?

If you feeling scared or anxious about being tested, or testing yourself, leave it for a while until you calm down. Some tests can be ineffective, especially; if the seal appears to have been tampered with. A broken seal may mean that some necessary contents are missing or destroyed. It is obviously unnecessary to use a HIV home test if you already are HIV positive. It will not reverse your status. Check the outside of the box for the expiry date of the kit. An expired testing system is useless. Are you sixteen or younger? If so you should avoid using the testing system.