Getting an STD test can be daunting if you have never done it before, but it doesn’t have to be a hassle. You may be surprised by how fast, easy, and affordable it can be!
In this article, we will introduce all your options to get tested quickly and discreetly. With an at-home or online STD test, you can get accurate results in as little as 24 hours and receive a free consultation from a doctor.
There was a time when you had to schedule an appointment at the doctor’s office to get an STD test, and then wait a week or more for your results. Thankfully, those days are behind us. In the comparison table below, you can see how these new testing methods compare to STD tests at traditional doctors’ offices and public clinics.
|Testing Method||Waiting Times||Speed of Results||Positive Consultation|
Private Testing (Walk-In Clinic)
10-20 Minutes with No Wait
Free With Positive Result
At-Home STD Testing
Free With Positive Result
Call for Appointment
Call for Appointment
Out-of-Pocket Cost Required
Limited Hours and Long Lines
This is one of the most popular ways to get tested for STDs today. These tests combine the best of both worlds for convenience and accuracy. You will order the test online at home, but you can walk into a professional lab testing center to get tested. This reduces the likelihood of errors.
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You can order the test within minutes, without leaving the house.
This form of testing is private and discreet.
Online STD testing is cost-effective.
Even though you will need to visit a testing center, it should be easy to find one near you.
You do not need to wait or book an appointment. Testing takes only minutes.
If you have a positive result, then some companies will follow up with you. STDCheck.com lets you call in for a free consultation with a doctor. Sometimes, you can get your prescription written over the phone.
You will have to leave your house for the testing.
You may not find tests for every single disease. For example, STDCheck.com does not seem to offer a trichomoniasis test.
You don’t even need to leave your house to get tested for STDs this way, which makes it the most discreet option. Everything is done through email and snail mail.
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FDA-approved testing means accurate results if you follow the instructions with care.
Order online, collect your sample within five minutes, send it back, and wait. There is nothing more to it! This is the most convenient method for STD testing.
Your discretion is assured.
Within just a few days, you will hear back about your results.
Accuracy is high if you correctly follow the directions, but there is less control in your home environment than in a professional testing center, so accuracy may be lower than it is with walk-in tests.
It takes a few more days to get your results than it does with walk-in tests.
Another option is to simply visit your regular clinic and talk to your doctor.
You can talk to your doctor right away about your concerns. Your doctor is familiar with your records, and they know you, which may provide some useful context.
An STD test from your local clinic should be accurate, assuming you trust the lab that the clinic uses.
This is the most expensive way to get tested. Instead of spending under $200 for a comprehensive panel, you might spend $2K.
This is also one of the slowest ways to get tested—especially in rural areas. It is common to wait weeks to see a doctor, and then wait weeks again for your test results.
There is nothing confidential about getting tested this way.
Getting tested at a clinic is inconvenient. It involves scheduling, driving, waiting, and other potential hassles.
Many people find visiting the doctor’s office for STD testing to be embarrassing.
One last option for STD testing is a trip to a free clinic. If you go to a public STD-testing clinic, then you may get a free or discounted test, depending on your financial situation.
In conclusion, we do not advise a visit to a free clinic or your doctor’s office for STD testing. The doctor’s office is expensive, and both options can potentially involve a lot of hassle.
You might not have to pay for STD testing. Obviously, if you are on a tight budget, then this can be a significant benefit.
Accuracy should be high. A public health clinic using a professional lab can provide you with accurate results.
Testing is not always free. In some cases, you might get a single free test, and then you must pay for the rest.
You may not be able to use the clinic at all. Some free clinics are only available to low-income customers. If you are above the income ceiling, then they may not even serve you.
The process is not discreet.
There may be an extensive wait. Free and low-income clinics are notorious for extremely lengthy wait times. You could end up sitting in the waiting room for hours, and then find yourself waiting weeks to find out whether you have an STD.
It can be inconvenient to drive to the testing center and back. You might also feel embarrassed about going.