Taking covid tests on a regular basis have certainly become commonplace for many around the UK these days. It’s important to know how to read the results, however, so that you can be sure you are covid-free and aren’t running the risk of spreading the virus without knowing it.
Lateral flow tests are a very quick and easy way to see if you have covid, providing fast and reliable results in just 30 minutes. Unlike PCR tests, these ones do not have to be sent to a lab for analysis, working by detecting the antigens in the virus.
If a red line appears next to the control marker C on the test, this indicates a negative result. If a second line appears next to the control marker T, this indicates a positive result. However, it’s possible that the line next to the marker T could appear very faintly and it’s important to know what this means so you can isolate if necessary.
When you have a high viral load, the second line next to the T will be clear, but if you have lower levels of the virus, the test will be less sensitive so the line next to the T could appear very faintly. But this is still a positive test result, so the necessary precautions should be taken.
If you have a positive result, it means you are likely to be infected with the virus and you pose a risk to others through infection. As such, make sure the test result is reported to the NHS and then take a PCR test as well in order to confirm the result.
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