In the era coming off the heels of a global pandemic, at-home testing is becoming more the norm than not. We are now in the age of self-diagnosis, which is both convenient and economical. Obviously, when needed, seeing your doctor is the first recommendation; however, when it comes to testing for common infections like a UTI, an at-home test can be a great first-level screening test.
The sooner you know, the sooner you can get treatment and get on with your life. And you can do all of that while binge-watching your favorite show. Talk about multitasking. If you get recurring UTIs or are just curious about how the at-home testing kits for UTIs work, here's a quick how-to guide to test yourself for a UTI at home in just three steps. Easy peasy.
How to Use Your At-Home UTI Test Kit in 3 Steps
At-home tests are a great way to detect a UTI before going to see your doctor. At-home UTI test kits use the exact same method doctors use to test your urine, giving you equally reliable results. It's quite simple; the test works by detecting if both leukocytes (white blood cells) and nitrite are present in your urine. If they both are, it is a strong indicator that a UTI may be present, and you can call your doctor with the results or connect to a healthcare provider via the Checkable App. If you are experiencing UTI pain and know the symptoms, an at-home UTI test can make it easier for you to get treated faster.
- Step 1: After washing your hands, sit on the toilet and open your UTI test kit. Start by using a wipe to gently clean the outside of your urethra to prevent contamination. Remove the test strip and hold it in your urine stream facing down for one or two seconds to saturate the test pad. Hold the test strip in one hand while you finish your business, making sure not to touch it.
- Step 2: Lay the test strip on the wrapper or a piece of toilet paper and set a timer for two minutes. After the first minute, read the result of the nitrites test by comparing the color of the square on your test strip with the color on the chart printed on the foil pouch. After the second minute, match the leukocyte test result color to the color on the chart as well.
- Step 3: Interpret the results. The color of each test pad indicates whether the test was positive or negative for leukocytes or nitrites. If the colors on your test strip match the chart for both leukocytes and nitrites, that means it is positive, and it is a strong indicator that a UTI is present. However, interpreting the results can be tricky if one is a match and one isn't.
- Negative leukocytes and negative nitrites indicate that neither substance was detected in your urine. However, that doesn't necessarily rule out a urinary tract infection. If you are experiencing UTI symptoms but get a negative result, follow up with your doctor for a urine culture.
- Positive leukocytes and negative nitrites or Negative leukocytes and positive nitrites mean that one or the other was detected in your urine. Though it is normal to have a few white blood cells and bacteria in your urine, testing positive for either one can be a sign of a potential UTI, and again, you should follow up with your doctor as it could also be an indication of other health conditions like BV or trichomoniasis.
- Positive leukocytes and positive nitrites mean that both leukocytes and nitrites were detected in your urine, which most likely means that you have a UTI and should start taking antibiotics pronto.
Checkable's at-home UTI tests are designed to help get you treated faster if it is positive; however, if negative, it’s important to review results with a doctor for further testing. Untreated UTIs can cause more severe infections, so always err on the side of caution. In the meantime, start taking Checkable's Urinary Tract Balance at the first sign of a UTI. It contains D-Mannose, Cranberry Juice Powder, Hibiscus, and natural Dandelion herb to help prevent UTIs and minimize your symptoms.