This page is designed to help you select the STI test or screen that suits you best. This is dependent on your sexual activity and what you know, or do not know, about your sexual partner. If you are unsure about a particular infection or just want general peace of mind regarding your sexual health, Better2Know recommends either the Full Screen, the Platinum Screen or the Early Platinum Screen.
I had unprotected sex on a one-night stand
You should abstain from sex with anyone until you get tested and are aware of your status. Many of our STI tests and screens require a minimum period of incubation – which is the time between contracting an infection and getting tested – but you can still transmit an STI during this period. If you require results quickly, Better2Know provides a number of confidential screens that can detect a range of infections after a shorter incubation period. Such screens include:
- The Better2Know Early Platinum Screen (suitable 14 days after potential exposure): HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Syphilis, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Herpes I/II, Ureaplasma, Mycoplasma, Trichomonas and Gardnerella. Results are available within five working days from the samples' arrival at the laboratory.
- The Better2Know Early Detection Screen (appropriate 10 days after exposure): HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C. Results are available within one to five working days from your sample's arrival at the laboratory.
- The Better2Know Comfort Screen (suitable 14 days after any incident – urine only): Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Herpes I and II, Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma, Trichomonas and Gardnerella. Results will be available within five working days from the receipt of your sample by the laboratory.
- The Better2Know Peace of Mind Screen (appropriate 14 days after infection): Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea and Syphilis. Results will be available within five working days from when the sample arrives in the laboratory.
I have had unprotected anal sex
It is very easy to pass on STIs like HIV through unprotected anal sex, as the lining of the rectum is thin and delicate. This makes small tears and cuts quite common. Specifically for those who have received anal sex, Better2Know would recommend a Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea test of your rectum. This test would take a small swab from your rectum to detect an infection in that area.
I have performed oral sex without protection
It is possible to catch an STD by giving oral sex. If this applies to you, Better2Know would recommend a Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea test of your throat. This test takes a small swab from your throat, giving you fast, accurate results within one to five working days from your sample’s arrival at our certified laboratory. If you had a cut or tear in your mouth at the time, there is a possibility of HIV transmission, and you should consider an HIV test.
I have received oral sex
Certain infections can be transmitted from the mouth. This is more likely if the person who gave you oral sex had a cut or sore in their mouth, or if you have a cut or sore on your genitals. The infections that can be transferred in this way are most commonly Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea, but can also include HIV. In this instance, we would suggest that you have a Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea and HIV test. If you think the person who gave you oral sex had a cold sore, we would also suggest a test for Herpes.
My ex-partner has told me they have an STI
The first thing we advise you to do is to try and find out what infection they have tested positive for. If your ex-partner has one STI, there is a chance they may have others. They might not have received testing for all the infections that Better2Know tests for. We suggest that you receive testing for whatever your ex-partner is positive for, along with a full range of other infections to be certain of your sexual health status. If you are unsure or do not want to ask, Better2Know recommends the Full Screen, which includes testing for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, HIV and Syphilis and Hepatitis B, Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma. If you are female and have unusual discharge or odour, we would suggest a WSW Screen, such as the Comfort Screen, Comprehensive Screen, Confirm Screen or a vaginal swab.
I have had unprotected sex with a sex worker
Unprotected sexual intercourse with a sex worker carries a great deal of risk due to the large number of partners that each sex worker may have been with. If you have had sex with a sex worker, have reason to suspect they may be a drug user (potentially leading to the contraction of blood related infections), did not use a condom, had an open cut or sore on your genitals, or your partner had blisters or sores, then you should consider the Better2Know Platinum Screen. If the encounter was less than 28 days ago, you are eligible for the Early Platinum Screen, which will detect the same array of infections at half the period of incubation.
The condom split / came off
We understand it can be extremely worrying in a situation where you have done the right thing but have been let down by the condom. As far as your testing needs are concerned, in this situation both you and your partner should be tested as infection can go both ways. The Better2Know Full Screen offers confidential testing for: HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Syphilis, Hepatitis B, Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma. If you are sure that your risk of contracting HIV is low, you may want to consider the Peace of Mind Screen. This popular screening option tests for Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea and Syphilis just two weeks after any incident you are concerned about.
We did not have sex, but touched one another intimately
Certain harmful infections can be passed on through bodily contact alone. It is unlikely that you will catch, or pass on, HIV unless you both had cuts on your body that made contact with one another. If you are worried that you might have been exposed to an STI by touching your partner intimately, you can choose our Blemish Screen. One of the most common STIs transmitted through touch is HPV. The Human Papilloma Virus can cause genital warts and even cervical cancer in women, as well as cancers of the mouth, throat, anus and penis. HPV testing is available for women at any time, but men must have a visible wart or lesion to swab.
Herpes, both type I (usually found around the mouth) and type II (usually found around the groin) can be passed on when touching any infected area. We can test for Herpes by blood (if you have no symptoms), urine, or a swab of the symptomatic area. Syphilis can also be passed on by touch if your partner had an open syphilis sore during the encounter. If you have a lump, blister or bump that you are unsure about, Better2Know would recommend our Blemish Screen.
I have suffered a needle stick injury
Needle stick injuries are most common in the healthcare profession. They can also be prevalent amongst social carers and legal staff who work with patients in a health or social care environment. You should access PEP (Post Exposure Prophylaxis) within 72 hours of suffering such an injury. This can reduce your chances of contracting HIV if indeed you have come into contact with HIV infected blood. With needle stick injuries, the most common concern surrounds blood born STIs, including HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and, less frequently, Syphilis.
I am going to have a baby / I have been asked to donate sperm
Before you consider having a baby it is important to be certain that you are not carrying any sexually transmitted infections. STIs can be passed on to your baby before he or she is born, and can also make it more difficult for you to become pregnant. If you are considering being a sperm donor, you should also get tested to be sure you are not passing any infection on to the mother.
Both men and women should have a Platinum Screen and should be tested for HPV and Herpes before planning any pregnancy. These tests will detect the most common STIs, and after appropriate treatment you can start trying to have a baby. Testing for HIV is particularly important as, left untreated, an HIV infection can lead to serious health complications and even death. It is also important to test for HIV before getting pregnant as the chances of passing on the infection to your baby can be minimised with the right treatment.
I am pregnant
If you find out you are pregnant and have not been tested, it is important that you get yourself tested now. Though many STIs can be symptomless, they may still affect your pregnancy, potentially causing undue harm to your unborn child. Infections such as HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Hepatitis B, Syphilis, Herpes and HPV can all be passed from mother to child. These STIs, along with further infections such as Mycoplasma, Ureaplasma and Gardnerella, can lead to early rupture of the membranes and pre-term birth. In the case of HIV, with the proper treatment you can minimise the chances of passing this potentially life-threatening illness on to your child. For expectant mothers who are concerned about their sexual health, Better2Know would suggest either the Full Screen or the Platinum Screen. You should also consider an HPV test, as this too can be passed on from mother to child.
It only happened once
With a sexually transmitted infection, once is all it takes. Of course, the chances are increased if you have been with multiple partners, but if you sleep with someone without knowing their sexual history, you remain at risk. If you have no outward signs of infection, then Better2Know would suggest the Full Screen. If you have a blemish, spot, lump, wart or blister then we recommend a Blemish Screen, which will take a swab of the area you are concerned about. This screen tests for Herpes, HPV and Syphilis. If you are female and have either unusual discharge or odour, we would advise you to select one of Better2Know’s bespoke WSW screens.