What Over the Counter STD Test Options Are Available from Brick & Mortar Stores?
Over the counter STD tests are available from brick and mortar stores. You’ll find a lot of tests at your favorite stores: Wal-Mart, Walgreens and so on. Pricing isn’t too bad either, depending on the retailer.
You can also go to a doctor and ask for standard OTC STD test kits, but there’s a catch: privacy.
What About Your Privacy?
If you’re looking for privacy, you won’t get it at your local Wal-Mart – that’s for sure. Privacy is a major reason that people choose mail order kits online over a local store when testing for an STD.
Let’s face it: we see a lot of people at these big stores.
You risk having a friend or family member seeing you with a test kit in-hand. If you don’t care about everyone knowing that you might have a disease, then this isn’t much of a problem. An over the counter test kit may be a good option for those who could care less about their privacy.
But there are other concerns when buying a test in person:
- Ask for the test. You’ll need to ask the person behind the counter to get the test for you in many cases. If you know the person, this makes for a very awkward situation. You’ll also be overheard by others, which is never fun.
- Receipts. If you carry around a store receipt, you’ll find that a lot of people tend to dig these up at the wrong times. Women know this when they have purses overfilled with receipts that seemingly spill out when they don’t want them to.
Privacy isn’t the key focus of an OTC STD kit. You have no real privacy when buying a test in public, and you might also get lucky. Sometimes, the store is dead and you won’t see a familiar face anywhere.
The chances of this happening are slim.
What STD Testing Kits Do Walgreens and Wal-Mart Offer?
We’re using Wal-Mart and Walgreens as just an example because they seem to be in every town in the country. You can swap these names out with most pharmacies and similar retailers and find these very same tests behind the counter or down an aisle.
If you’re on a hunt for STD tests, you’ll find that the country will matter, too.
We’re going to be focusing primarily on the U.S. market, but these same tests, or something very similar, are likely to be found in most countries.
The tests that are available in my local Wal-Mart, include:
OraQuick HIV Test
OraQuick provides an industry-leading STD test, and it’s geared toward HIV. The test, available at Wal-Mart, will provide the same great results as going to a doctor. In fact, the test is the same as the tests you’ll find in your doctor’s office.
But now the test is available for you, too.
This is an oral swab test, and it’s super easy to use. The best part is that the results are provided in as little as 20 minutes.
You’ll know within less than half an hour whether or not you have HIV. This is considered a regular way to test for HIV, and it’s 91.7% accurate when testing people with HIV and 99.9% accurate when testing people that don’t have HIV.
And that’s it. You might not even find Walgreens STD test kits because the company is pushing heavily for consumers to go into their clinics. You’ll be able to get tested by a professional in some Walgreens stores, but this is a major privacy concern, too.
Store Brought STD Test Problems
If you buy an STD test at the store, there are a few problems that you may come across. The key most important problems that I have found with store-bought tests rather than online tests is that:
- Expiration. A lot of stores fail to replace their old and expired STD tests. This doesn’t mean that the tests don’t work at this point, but there may be a risk that the test is inaccurate.
- Handling. People in brick and mortar stores have a tendency to throw kits around. The handling of these items is key to their effectiveness, so if some employee hurls the test behind the counter, you may have a faulty test – it does happen.
- When you buy an STD test online, there is a higher level of service when you use STDCheck.com or MyLabBox. These companies will work with you and try to help you along the way, from testing to treatment.
Yes, the brick and mortar stores are great for HIV testing, and these stores have a lot of reasons why they offer just these tests. First and foremost, the test will use an oral swab which will test for the disease.
The same cannot be done with other serious STDs that require blood work.
Also, the test doesn’t need to be sent out to a lab. You won’t need to sit and wonder “how long does it take to get STD test results?” – they’ll be available in minutes.
But you’re so very limited in the number of tests you can buy.
HIV is a sexually transmitted disease that no one ever wants to get. This disease is highly deadly, and while treatment has come a long way, there is no cure for HIV yet. Your life is forever changed with this disease.
The problem is that all of the other life-changing STDs can’t be tested for with OTC tests, including but not limited to:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitis C
And the list goes on and on.
You won’t find an in-depth STD screening at your local pharmacy store, Wal-Mart, CVS, Walgreens or Target. You’ll find the HIV test in stores. I have noticed some different tests in online stores, but they’re not available in brick and mortar stores.
I always find better deals at other online retailers or directly from the test seller than on these retailers’ websites.
When you choose a test from STDCheck.com or MyLabBox, you’re choosing the best option in my opinion. The reason I find that these outlets are much better than a brick and mortar store is because:
- Privacy is upheld. You can order and test without seeing a soul. This means that if you do have an STD, only the people you choose to tell will know.
- Variety is offered. There are a variety of STD test kits and options available from these two outlets. The great thing is that you can have a battery of tests performed and make sure that you’re free from all STDs.
- Quality is also better. There are never issues with the quality of these tests because they come directly from the manufacturer. This means that you can be positive that the test is accurate.
- Lab results are often certified. This means that you will have peace of mind in knowing that your results are very accurate. There is always room for error, but lab results will be much higher in accuracy, which is always a good thing.
Overall, I am disappointed with the selection and options offered at my local brick and mortar stores. Aside from the HIV tests, they really do not offer the variety or privacy that most people demand when taking an STD test.