Importance of Testing

Testing yourself for HIV is important for your health, your relationships, your life and your future.

The growth of new infections continues to pose serious health risks. According to the CDC, today in the U.S. 1.2MM people are infected with HIV. 20% of those infected are unaware of their HIV status. Those undiagnosed 20% are responsible for up to 70% of the new infections each year in the United States.

The fact is that HIV is preventable, and you can reduce or eliminate your risk. And early detection can lead to early treatment and better outcomes. Many people live long, normal lives with early detection and proper care, because the advancements in HIV options have been significant.

How often should people test?

How often you should get tested for HIV depends on your circumstances. If you have never been tested for HIV, you should be tested at least once. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends being tested at least once a year if you do things that can result in HIV infection. These include:

  • Sex (vaginal, oral or anal) with multiple sex partners
  • Sex with someone who is HIV positive or whose HIV status you don't know
  • Sex between a man and another man
  • Using illegal injected drugs or steroids
  • Shared needles or syringes
  • Exchanging sex for money
  • A diagnosis or treatment for hepatitis, tuberculosis or a sexually transmitted disease like syphilis

If you have been exposed to events that could result in HIV infection, you should test 3 months after the event. If you feel you are at risk of being infected with HIV, it is a good idea to test regularly.

See what leading experts in the HIV/AIDS community have to say about the importance of testing and the benefits of OraQuick's in-home HIV test.