NEW: COVID-19 testing sites have been added to our calendar.
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The pandemic that is shaking our world to its core, is a pernicious disease that’s baffling scientists and the entire medical profession. But clarity is available on the personal front. There are COVID home-test kits and lab centers that can help you determine if you have been infected with the coronavirus as well as if you have the necessary antibodies to fight the infection. Here’s everything you need to know about testing for the virus that is changing the way we live life from one moment to the next.
There are several types of COVID tests that fall into 2 main categories. There’s an antibody test and a COVID antigen test. The COVID test for antibodies is a simple blood test. It will tell you if you have been exposed to the coronavirus, and whether your body has developed the antibodies it needs to protect itself against this invader.
COVID-19 antibody test kits check for immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. If you were exposed to COVID, then your body will have produced the IgG antibodies, and they’ll show up in your blood test. It can take up to 14 days to create these antibodies, though most people (roughly 91%) develop them earlier.
Currently, there aren’t any at-home COVID-19 antibody tests. However, you can go to a lab to get your blood test for COVID-19 antibodies. It’s good to know if you have antibodies, but it’s also important to know that having antibodies doesn’t mean you are immune from catching coronavirus again.
The antibody test is not the same as a COVID antigen test. The second type of COVID testing is for the actual disease. It tests to see if you currently have an active infection. This is even more important to know because if your test comes back positive, it means you are an active carrier of the disease and can pass it along to other people.