A visit to a sexual health clinic for a series of tests is not high on people’s list of priorities for things they’d like to do. Unfortunately there are circumstances where this is unavoidable but it is better to know just exactly what is going to happen when you do go. One way to reduce the need is to have Home StI kits around like those available from bexleysexualhealth but there may well be a time when the trip has to be made.
The first thing to remember is that the tests are completely uncomplicated and that modern medicine has come up with cures for pretty much all of the known sexual diseases. You should also be aware that anything done will be treated in the utmost and strictest of confidence. The other important thing to remember is that the staff are not judgmental people. They are not there to make you feel guilty or bad, in fact they want to now everything that has happened so that they can make sure that they know how to help you in the best way possible. You can go yourself, even if you don’t have any of the symptoms associated with sexual disease. They won’t tell you parents but if they feel that you need extra support or that you are at risk they might ask another health care professional to come and help you but only if you agree to it. The clinic won’t tell your GP if you don’t want them to either, you don’t even have to give them your real name but you will have to give them some correct contact details in case they can’t give you the results there and then.
There will be a few questions but the Doctors and nurses will need to ask them. They are very simple such as when do you first have sex, was it unprotected (without using a condom) if you’ve had any of the symptoms you would associate with a sexual disease and why you think you might have them. You can see female or male doctor whomsoever you feel the most comfortable with.
Based on what you’ve told them the Doctor can ask you to take all or just a few tests. The most common is to give them some of your wee in a cup or take a blood test, they won’t need too much. They might need to inspect your bits or take a swab of the urethra (where you pee from) which can be painful but only for a second or so. If your a girl then they might need a swab from your vagina but you’ll be able to do that yourself.
The main thing is not to worry. You’ve taken a big step but it will be ok.