If you have not had an HIV-test, but think you may be positive then why not test?
There are many reasons to test.
- A routine sexual health check-up every year that includes HIV is recommended for anyone who is sexually active.
- The same is true for anyone who has had other risk factors for HIV – for example by sharing drug injecting equipment.
- Testing is free, easy, and confidential. In the UK the test has become much more routine, so that there is no longer a requirement for pre-test counselling.
- Many sexual health clinics (also called STI or GUM clinics) offer both appointment-based and drop-in services. Some tests give a result while you wait – within an hour.
- Modern HIV tests (called fourth generation) are accurate a few weeks after an infection. There is no longer any need to wait for three months before testing.
- People who worry about HIV most are often people who had had the lowest risks. Finding out for sure will stop you worrying, and let you get on with life.
- If your results are positive and you do have HIV, then finding out now could be critical to your health. The earlier you find out the earlier you can access care.
- At least one third of all people in the UK are diagnosed late. This is after they have been HIV positive for many years, and after HIV has damaged their immune system so much that the response from treatment will already be reduced.