How home health kits work and how to use them safely
Pharmacies have been selling self-testing health test kits for some time now, and as a result, they are now widely available. You can either buy them in store or order online. Your doctor may even recommend you use one or more of the kits.
These home health kits are a good way of ensuring that you can safely monitor your health without having to visit your doctor or emergency room more often than is necessary.
Self-testing health kits can be used to check for a range of medical issues such as infertility, sexually transmitted infections and even some cancers. They can be used to monitor blood sugar levels and test for food intolerances. Pregnancy tests also fall into the category of a home health test kit.
Some companies sell self-testing health kits in packages of many tests that check for the presence of multiple diseases such as diabetes, liver disease and urinary tract infections. Different tests use different methods. Many tests require you to dip a test strip into a urine sample, but some others ask you to provide a stool sample. Some come with a blood collection kit that you can use to take a blood sample which you then send to a lab for further tests.
Patients must follow the instructions carefully as each test is slightly different and taking blood, for example, requires a lot more care and attention than merely dipping a strip into some urine.
Always talk to a medical professional about the suitability of these kits and how to use them. If you are already taking medicine, you need to check with your doctor that it is safe to use a specific health kit.
Remember that a self-testing health kit can give you a good indication of what is happening inside your body, but it is never 100 per cent accurate. If you have genuine concerns – and especially if a test gives a positive reading – you should always consult with your doctor or other health professional.