What It’s Like Swabbing Yourself For A COVID Test
Sure, there are at-home tests you can do but what if you got to a testing location and had to swab yourself?
That is what happened to me and my boyfriend yesterday when we went to get our COVID-19 tests.
I will admit, I was nervous. I have heard everyone's stories about how far up your nasal cavity they stick that swab and I'm honestly a big baby about that kind of stuff.
Yes, as someone who has two tattoos and has had her nose pierced twice, needles don't bother me but a swab going up to my brain had me shaking in my boots.
I absolutely appreciate everyone's tips on places to go to get tested even if you are not currently showing symptoms and will keep those in mind as we now have more and more friends and family testing positive, this may not be our first rodeo.
We ended up going to a Rite Aid pharmacy and tried to follow the informational video they sent us which must have been from a different location or something as it looked a bit different.
I had to call inside, told the lady we were there for our back-to-back appointments and asked where we go to get our test and the lady said "uhhh...around the building?" meaning you just go through the drive-thru window.
We thought that was a bit strange but off we went.
They then walked us through the process and sent our swabs and test tubes through the window. We opened them up and stuck those things about an inch up our first nostril. You swizzle the swab around, about an inch up, for three seconds and then hold it there for 15 (the lady counted for us).
The funny part wads she, with authority, told us "You will cry, you will probably sneeze, but DO NOT pull it out."
Jordan sneezed, I cried, it was not fun.
Once you swabbed both nostrils, you put the swab in the tube, seal it up and send it back for the results.
As crazy as it was to swab myself, only thinking "I am absolutely not qualified for this" I actually think I prefer it this way.
I already get weird about strangers in my face (as any normal person probably is) so this way eliminated that.
Also, I think maybe that's why people complained about how far it goes. They are not you, they are not feeling for you where you are shoving that swab, so they probably are putting it as far as they think for good measure. If that makes sense, you know your body and you know whereabouts they tell you you should have it!
All in all, my nose was runny the rest of the night and while it was not fun, as Jordan put it, "what a bonding experience." My only regret is not taking pictures/a video but in the moments where I am trying to listen and make sure I do it right, it really slipped my mind.
If you or someone you know is looking to get a COVID-19 test, Rite Aid is not a bad place to go! Not all locations provide testing and you DO need an appointment as they need to prepare test tubes with your name and information on it. The tests are also free for anyone 18 and up so make sure to bring your ID for that reason and so they can confirm all the info!
Interested in what happens after your swabbing? Here's a look at a COVID test's trip to results:
From Swab To Lab: A COVID-19 Test's Trip To Results