Recently, at-home STD tests have become famous for individuals seeking privacy, convenience, and quick results. Several companies offer reliable STD home test kits for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), allowing users to test themselves without visiting a healthcare provider.
This article comprehensively reviews the best at-home STD tests, their features, and how to choose the best one.
Best At-Home STD Tests – Quick Overview
- iDNA At-Home Testing – Best At-Home STD Tests Overall
- Nurx STD Testing – Best At-Home STD Tests With Insurance
- LetsGetChecked – Best At-Home STD Tests for Quick Results
Introduction to STIs
STIs (sexually transmitted infections) involves the transfer of an organism between sexual partners through different routes of sexual contact, including oral, anal, or vaginal. Despite being preventable with proper education and barrier control, STIs often remain unidentified in many populations, especially medically underserved areas.
STIs significantly burden healthcare systems globally due to their high incidence and potential complications if left untreated. Healthcare professionals need to have an in-depth understanding of STIs’ natural history, patterns of transmission, and effective prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment strategies. 
What are At-Home STD Tests?
At-home STD tests are kits allowing individuals to test for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) from the comfort of their homes. These tests typically involve collecting blood, urine, or swab samples sent to a laboratory for analysis.
There are two primary types of the best at-home STD tests. The first involves ordering STD home test kits, collecting samples, and returning them for analysis. The second type consists in ordering a test online, going to a lab for sample collection, and receiving results online.
This option is ideal for individuals who prefer professional sample collection but want to avoid a doctor’s appointment. 
At-home testing services must abide by telehealth standards in the following circumstances: Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)- and Certified Analytics Professional (CAP)-certified guidance available to customers who test positive for STD.
Best At-Home STD Tests
iDNA At-Home Testing – Best At-Home STD Tests Overall
iDNA’s best at-home STD tests provide a hassle-free testing experience to individuals concerned about their sexual health. By offering a self-collection method, iDNA eliminates the need for individuals to visit a lab or healthcare facility for testing. The process is simple and can be completed from the comfort of one’s home.
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Convenient and discreet testing from the comfort of one’s home.
- The Complete Test and Standard Test options cover a wide range of STDs.
- The self-collection method eliminates the need for lab visits.
- Inclusion of Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma tests for a more comprehensive view of sexual health.
- Membership plans offer cost savings and additional benefits.
- iDNA does not accept insurance directly, but reimbursement may be possible through FSAs or HSAs.
- Results may take up to 7 days to be available, which could be longer than other testing options.
iDNA Test Options and Pricing
iDNA At-Home STI Tests offer a range of test options to suit different needs. These options include:
The Complete Test is iDNA’s most comprehensive option, thoroughly analyzing one’s sexual health. This test includes screening for chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis C, herpes, HIV, HPV, Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma, syphilis, and trichomoniasis.
The test covers many common STDs and offers individuals peace of mind. The Complete Test costs $298.
The Standard Test is a more concise option, targeting the most prevalent STDs. This test includes screening for chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, hepatitis C, herpes 2, HIV, and syphilis.
The Standard Test is suitable for individuals who have previously undergone comprehensive testing and are looking for a check-up. The Standard Test costs $198.
Customizable Test Bundle
For individuals who require specific testing or want to screen for multiple STDs, iDNA offers a customizable test bundle. This bundle allows individuals to select the specific tests they need, ensuring a tailored approach to their sexual health. The pricing for the customizable test bundle starts at $78 and varies based on the selected tests.
iDNA’s best at-home STD tests utilize various collection methods depending on the specific test chosen. These methods include:
- Blood Sample: Some tests may require a small blood sample to be collected using a finger prick method.
- Urine Sample: Urine samples are commonly used for testing certain STDs.
- Vaginal Swab: For tests targeting infections specific to individuals with vaginas, a vaginal swab may be required.
Acceptance of Insurance
While iDNA At-Home STI tests do not accept insurance, they provide an itemized receipt that can be submitted for reimbursement through flexible spending accounts (FSAs) or health savings accounts (HSAs). This allows individuals to offset the costs of testing potentially.
In the event of positive test results, iDNA At-Home STI tests offer access to a medical support team. This team can provide guidance, answer questions, and discuss treatment options with individuals, ensuring they receive the necessary support.
iDNA At-Home STI tests do not provide medication as part of their online STD testing services. However, their medical support team can recommend and guide individuals towards appropriate treatment options.
Returns and Shipping
iDNA At-Home STI tests offer free shipping within the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii. They also provide a 30-day window for returns and refunds, ensuring customer satisfaction.
iDNA offers two membership plans, providing individuals with additional benefits and cost savings. The $24.99-per-month membership includes discounted tests, affordable doctor consultations, and one free monthly test of choice.
The $49.99-per-month membership offers the same benefits, with the option of a free doctor’s consultation or a free test every month. These membership plans make regular testing more accessible and affordable.
Why We Chose iDNA At-Home STI Tests
We chose iDNA At-Home STI Tests as one of our top picks due to its comprehensive range of testing options, convenient self-collection method, the inclusion of Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma tests, and membership benefits. iDNA’s commitment to providing accurate and accessible sexual health testing aligns with our mission to help individuals make informed decisions about their well-being.
Nurx STD Testing – Best At-Home STD Tests With Insurance
Nurx is a company that aims to provide freedom and accessibility in reproductive healthcare. They offer various services, including the best at-home STD tests for men and women, herpes and migraine medication, and birth control without needing in-person doctor visits.
While Nurx may not screen for as many STIs as other providers, they offer at-home testing for six common infections and screening for high-risk HPV strains.
- Convenience: Nurx’s STD home test kits provide a convenient and discreet way to get tested for STDs without visiting a clinic or doctor’s office.
- Wide Range of Tests: Nurx offers a comprehensive range of tests, including online STD testing, HPV screening, emergency contraception, and HIV PrEP, allowing individuals to address various aspects of their sexual health.
- Affordability: Nurx is committed to making at-home STI testing more affordable, with transparent pricing and options for individuals with or without health insurance.
- Expert Guidance: Each test has unlimited access to a Nurx medical provider, ensuring individuals can seek guidance and support throughout the testing process.
- Limited At-Home STI Testing Options: While Nurx offers testing for common STIs, their range may be more limited compared to other providers. Individuals seeking a more comprehensive STD screening may need to explore other options.
- Consultation Fees: Nurx charges a $15 medical consultation fee for each test, which may be a drawback for some individuals. However, this fee includes unlimited access to a Nurx medical provider for a year.
- Insurance Coverage Limitations: While Nurx accepts insurance for most tests, limitations may depend on your specific plan and whether the partner lab is in-network.
Nurx STD Testing Kits
Nurx offers various at-home STD testing kits to suit different needs. Let’s take a closer look at the available options:
Basics Covered Kit
The Basics Covered Kit is a comprehensive testing option that covers chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV for all genders. It is suitable for individuals who haven’t been tested in over a year and provides a convenient way to ensure your sexual health is checked.
Healthy V Kit
The Healthy V Kit is specifically designed for individuals with vaginas. It includes testing for chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, and HIV. This kit caters to the unique needs of individuals with vaginas and provides peace of mind regarding their sexual health.
Full Control Kit
The Full Control Kit is the most inclusive option, covering chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis C, HIV, and syphilis. It suits individuals who want a comprehensive STI screening and haven’t been tested in over a year.
High-Risk HPV Screening
In addition to the online STD testing, Nurx also offers an HPV screening test. This test determines your risk for cervical cancer by screening for 14 high-risk HPV strains. It is recommended for individuals aged 30 to 65 with a cervix. The test can be ordered online, and you’ll receive STD home test kits in the mail for a quick and painless swab.
Nurx understands that accidents happen and offers emergency contraception options like Plan B and Ella. These can be ordered online and delivered to your door in discreet packaging. It’s important to note that the legality of emergency contraception may vary depending on your state, so it’s always best to check the regulations in your area.
For individuals at high risk of contracting HIV, Nurx offers both Truvada and Descovy, the two FDA-approved brands of PrEP (preexposure prophylaxis) for HIV prevention. After reviewing your results from an HIV test kit, a Nurx professional will determine if PrEP is suitable for you and provide a 3-month supply of daily pills.
How Nurx STD Testing Works
Now that we’ve explored the different STD home test kits and services offered by Nurx, let’s take a closer look at the process of getting tested:
Ordering Your Test Kit
To get started, you’ll need to visit the Nurx website and select the at-home testing kits that best suits your needs. Once you’ve chosen it, simply add the kit to your cart and checkout. Nurx accepts all major credit cards as payment, ensuring a seamless purchasing experience.
Once you receive your test STD home test kits in the mail, it’s time to collect your samples. Each kit has detailed instructions on managing your samples, whether it’s a urine sample, a vaginal swab, or a finger prick. It’s crucial to follow the instructions carefully to ensure accurate results.
Sending Your Samples
After collecting your samples, you’ll need to carefully package them according to the instructions. Nurx covers the cost of shipping both ways, making it incredibly convenient. Simply drop off your package at a designated shipping location, and it will go to the lab for testing.
Receiving Your Results
Once the lab receives your samples, they will begin processing and analyzing them. Results are typically delivered to your secure online account within seven days. Nurx ensures the accuracy of your results by processing samples in CAP-accredited and CLIA-certified labs.
In the event of a positive result, Nurx’s medical team will be in touch to discuss the next steps and provide guidance on treatment options.
Pricing and Insurance Coverage
Affordability is a key aspect of Nurx’s mission, and they strive to make over-the-counter STD testing accessible to everyone. The cost of Nurx STD testing depends on whether you have health insurance. Let’s break it down:
With Health Insurance:
If you have health insurance, Nurx works with partner labs that may be in-network with your insurance. In this case, your out-of-pocket expenses will depend on your specific plan’s coverage and whether the lab is in-network. To determine your potential costs, checking if your insurance is in-network with Molecular Testing Labs, Nurx’s partner lab is essential.
Without Health Insurance
For individuals without health insurance, Nurx offers transparent pricing for their over-the-counter STD testing kits. The Basics Covered Kit costs $150, the Healthy V Kit costs $190, and the Full Control Kit costs $220. These prices include the kit, lab testing, and shipping both ways.
Additionally, patients will pay a $14.50 service fee and a $15 medical consultation fee, which includes unlimited access to a Nurx medical provider for any questions or concerns regarding their at-home STI testing and results.
LetsGetChecked – Best At-Home STD Tests for Quick Results
LetsGetChecked, founded in 2014, is a health and diagnostics company specializing in home laboratory testing services. They offer various tests, including fertility screening, heart health assessments, digestive health evaluations, at-home STI testing, and cancer screenings.
Their goal is to provide an alternative to traditional clinic-based diagnostic testing, allowing individuals to conveniently and privately monitor their health.
- Wide Variety of Tests: LetsGetChecked offers an extensive range of tests, catering to various health concerns and conditions. Whether you’re interested in STI screening, general wellness assessments, or specific cancer screenings, they have you covered.
- Free Nurse Consultation: If you receive a positive test result, LetsGetChecked provides a free consultation with a nurse. This ensures that you can access professional guidance and support during a potentially stressful time.
- Discreet Packaging: LetsGetChecked understands the importance of privacy regarding sensitive health matters. All STD home test kits are delivered in unmarked packaging, ensuring your testing experience remains confidential.
- Convenience: With LetsGetChecked, you can skip the hassle of scheduling appointments and waiting at clinics. STD home test kits are delivered right to your doorstep, allowing you to collect your sample at a time that suits you best.
- Fast Results: Once your sample arrives at the laboratory, you can expect to receive your confidential results within 2 to 5 business days. This quick turnaround time ensures that you can take appropriate action promptly.
- Limited Shipping Availability: LetsGetChecked currently doesn’t ship to all countries. Before ordering a test kit, ensure they offer shipping to your location.
- Limited Individual Testing: Some conditions, such as STIs, can’t be tested individually through LetsGetChecked. If you’re specifically concerned about a particular infection, be aware that their testing options may include a broader panel rather than single tests.
- Potential for Inaccurate Results: It’s crucial to follow the instructions provided by LetsGetChecked carefully to ensure accurate testing. Mishandling or improper sample collection can lead to unreliable results.
How Does LetsGetChecked Work?
Now that we’ve explored the pros and cons, let’s delve into the step-by-step process of using LetsGetChecked.
Ordering and Activation
- Choose Your Test: Visit the LetsGetChecked website, app, or other authorized platforms to browse their range of tests. Select the test that aligns with your health concerns and add it to your cart.
- Anonymous and Confidential: LetsGetChecked values your privacy. Your test kit will arrive in discreet, unmarked packaging, ensuring your testing experience remains confidential.
- Test Activation: Once you receive your test kit, it’s time to activate it. Create an account on the LetsGetChecked website or app, and follow the instructions to register your kit. This step is essential to ensure accurate tracking and processing of your sample.
- Sample Collection: LetsGetChecked provides clear instructions on collecting your sample, whether it’s saliva, urine, stool, or blood. Each of the STD home test kits have the necessary supplies and detailed guidelines to ensure proper sample collection.
- Accuracy Matters: Pay close attention to the instructions provided. Proper sample collection is crucial for accurate testing. LetsGetChecked offers instructional videos to guide you through the process and ensure the highest level of accuracy.
Returning Your Sample
- Secure Packaging: After collecting your sample, place it in the provided biohazard bag and return it to the kit’s box. Make sure the sample is securely sealed to prevent any leaks during transit.
- Prepaid Shipping: LetsGetChecked covers the shipping costs by providing a prepaid shipping envelope. Place the box containing your sample into the envelope and return it the same day.
- Sample Processing: Once your sample arrives at the laboratory, it undergoes thorough processing and analysis. LetsGetChecked’s medical team reviews the results to provide you with accurate and reliable information.
Receiving and Understanding Results
- Notification: You’ll receive an email notification once your sample has been received and your results are ready. Typically, results are available within 2 to 5 business days from the date the lab receives your sample.
- Secure Online Account: Access your results through your secure online account on the LetsGetChecked dashboard. They provide detailed result breakdowns, informative factsheets, and helpful next steps to ensure you understand your results.
Consultation and Treatment Options
- Positive Results Consultation: If your test results return positive, LetsGetChecked offers a free consultation with a nurse. This consultation allows you to discuss your results, ask questions, and receive guidance on treatment options.
- Treatment Options: Based on the consultation and the nurse’s assessment, LetsGetChecked can provide treatment options for certain infections in line with clinical guidelines. They may send medication directly to your home or prescribe it to your local pharmacy for your convenience.
The Origin of STIs
STIs is a global health issue recognized by all public health agencies. The specific condition or disease depends on the causative organism and its transmission mode. Some of the risk factors that increase the transmission of STIs include unprotected sexual contact with multiple partners, a history of STIs, sexual assault, alcohol consumption, prostitution, and intravenous drug use. 
The eight most common STIs include four curable infections (chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis) and four that are treatable but incurable (hepatitis B, herpes simplex virus, HIV, and HPV).
Epidemiology of STIs
The most common STI in the United States is the human papillomavirus or HPV. Globally, at least 291 million women have been infected with HPV. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) determined that roughly 2.4 million non-HPV-related STIs were reported in the US in 2020. 
In general, the overall rate of STIs is increasing in the US, with 2.5 million STD cases or more expected when the final data is reported for 2022. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 1 million new potentially curable STIs are acquired daily worldwide, most of which are asymptomatic. 
Importance of Regular STD Testing
Regular testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or infections (STIs) is crucial for overall health and timely treatment. STDs and STIs are widespread, and anyone sexually active is potentially at risk.
Frequently testing for STIs and STDs is essential as many infections have no symptoms or mild symptoms that can go unnoticed. Early detection and treatment can prevent long-term health problems and reduce the risk of transmission to others.
Untreated STDs can lead to serious health problems, including infertility, certain types of cancer, and increased risk of HIV. Therefore, regular testing, coupled with safe sexual practices, is crucial in preventing these outcomes. 
How Do the Best At-Home STD Tests Work?
The best at-home STD tests are straightforward to use. They work in three main steps: ordering the test, collecting the sample, and awaiting results. Upon ordering the test, the company sends the STD home test kits discreetly to the user’s home. The user collects their sample – a swab, urine, or blood sample – following the instructions.
Once the sample has been collected, it is packaged in the provided prepaid envelope and sent back to the lab for testing. The laboratory processes the sample, testing for the presence of specific STDs. The results are then made available to the user via an online portal or phone call.
Each of the best at-home STD tests for men and women may screen for different diseases, depending on the type and brand of the test. Commonly tested STDs include chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, syphilis, and herpes.
Are the Best At-Home STD Tests Accurate?
One of the main concerns individuals have about the best at-home STD tests is their accuracy. According to various studies and expert opinions, these tests are generally reliable and accurate, provided they are used correctly. They use the same testing methods that clinics and doctors use, which have proven effective in detecting STDs.
However, the accuracy of the best at-home STD tests can be influenced by several factors. These include the quality of the test itself, proper sample collection, and the timing of the test. For instance, testing too soon after potential exposure may yield false negatives, as the infection may not yet be detectable.
It’s important to note that while the best at-home STD tests provide a convenient screening tool, they cannot replace regular check-ups with a healthcare provider. If the best at-home STD tests return a positive result, or if one experiences symptoms despite a negative effect, it’s recommended to seek medical attention for confirmatory testing and treatment.
The Best At-Home STD Tests for Instant Results
When it comes to the best at-home STD tests for instant results, there are a few standout options. These tests allow users to get their results within minutes, eliminating the waiting period associated with lab testing.
One popular option for these best at-home STD tests instant results is the iCare Rapid STD Test Kits, which offer results within 20 minutes. These tests use a small blood sample to test for various STDs, including HIV, syphilis, and herpes. Another option is the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test, which uses an oral swab to provide results within 20 to 40 minutes.
It’s important to remember that while these tests offer quick results, they may not be as comprehensive as lab-based tests. Therefore, they should be used as an initial screening tool, with any positive or uncertain results followed by a healthcare provider.
Taking an STD Urine Test at Home
Taking an STD urine test at home is a simple and non-invasive testing method for certain STDs. These tests typically screen for diseases such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, which are known to infect the urinary tract.
To take urine STD at-home tests, the user must collect a urine sample in the container provided in the test kit. The sample is then sent to a lab for analysis, and the user can access the results online or by phone after a few days.
While an STD urine test is an easy way to test for some STDs, it may not detect all types. Therefore, comprehensive testing that includes blood tests or swabs may be necessary for a complete evaluation of one’s sexual health.
What Comes in an At-Home STD Kit?
An at-home STD kit typically contains all the necessary materials to collect a sample and send it to a lab for testing. This includes a collection device (like a swab, lancet, or urine cup), instructions for collecting the sample, a biohazard bag for safe sample transport, and a prepaid return envelope.
Some at-home STD kits may also include additional materials, such as a registration card or a unique ID, to access the results. It’s important to read and follow all the instructions provided in the STD home test kits to ensure accurate results.
Best At-Home STD Tests: FAQ
In this section, common questions about at-home online STD testing are answered.
Are the Best At-Home STD Tests Accurate?
The best at-home STD tests vary in accuracy, but when conducted by reputable companies and using certified laboratories, the results can be highly reliable. It’s important to follow the instructions carefully and choose tests from reputable providers.
How Long Can STIs Go Undetected?
Depending on the infection and individual factors, STIs can go undetected for varying periods. Some STIs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, may not cause noticeable symptoms, leading to delayed detection. Regular testing is crucial for early detection and prompt treatment.
Do the Best At-Home STD Tests Provide Counseling or Follow-up Support?
Many of the best at-home STD tests offer follow-up support, such as consultations with healthcare professionals, if the results are positive. This allows individuals to discuss their results, receive guidance, and explore treatment options.
Can Insurance Reimburse the Best At-Home STD Tests?
Insurance coverage for the best at-home STD tests varies depending on the provider and insurance plan. Some tests may be covered by flexible spending accounts (FSA) or health savings accounts (HSA). It’s recommended to check with your insurance provider for specific coverage details.
Conclusion: The Future of STD Testing at Home
The best at-home STD tests represent a significant advancement in the field of sexual health. These tests provide a convenient and confidential alternative to traditional STD testing, empowering individuals to take control of their sexual health.
At-home STD tests provide a convenient and private way to monitor your sexual health. With a wide range of options available, individuals can choose the test that best suits their needs and preferences.
Whether you opt for iDNA, Nurx STD, LetsGetChecked, or another reputable provider, regular testing is essential for the early detection and treatment of STIs. Take charge of your sexual health by selecting the best at-home STD tests.
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 – Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), World Health Organization. Available at: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/sexually-transmitted-infections-(stis)#:~:text=More%20than%201%20million%20sexually,%2C%20gonorrhoea%2C%20syphilis%20and%20trichomoniasis. (Accessed: 02 September 2023).
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Author: Kire Stojkovski M.D
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