Relax and follow these simple steps

A throat swab can test for chlamydia and gonorrhoea if you’ve had oral (in your mouth) sex, or have been deep kissing as this has been shown to be a way that people can pass on gonorrhoea.

You might find the following tips helpful:

  • Read the printed instructions in your kit first - this has the most up-to-date information

  • Give yourself enough time, so you’re relaxed. 

  • It helps to have a mirror handy to see where you are putting the swab

  • It is best to avoid taking a throat swab immediately after eating and drinking.

Here's your step-by-step guide on how to collect your sample

Before you start

  • Wash your hands

  • Unpack your kit

Be careful you don't touch the tip of the swab. Once the swab is out of the packet, try to make sure the swab doesn't touch anything else apart from the area of your body you are swabbing.

How to take a throat swab sample at home

Take your test

01. Collect your sample

  • Wash and dry your hands before opening the sample kit. 
  • When you're ready, open your mouth and look into a mirror. You'll notice an arch across the back of your mouth

  • Avoiding the tonsils, run the swab across the back of your throat behind the arch.

  • Make sure to also swab the sides of your throat, including over and around where your tonsils are - similar to completing a COVID test.

  • Remove the swab from your mouth being careful not to touch your tongue.

You're all done, get ready to return your samples to us. 

02. Returning your samples

  • Place the swab back into the collection tube, pushing tightly to close the lid

  • Place sample collection tube into the transport pack.
  • Place your samples in the box with the completed return slip. Insert the two large tabs into the slots and seal with the security tape included in the kit. 

  • The box is free to return, so pop it in any postbox.

Last reviewed March 2022

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