Home DNA testing kits are now widely available. It was not so long ago when DNA testing was the sole preserve of the wealthy. DIY home DNA testing kits are available throughout the United States. In fact, pharmacy chains have added these kits in stores nationwide because of their popularity. It is possible to conduct one of these tests for less than $30. This is a far cry from the hundreds of dollars that DNA testing in a lab costs. Although lab tests are more accurate, home DNA testing can provide enough proof to confirm a suspicion or refute an allegation. The general method of taking the test involves placing a swab inside the cheek, putting it in an envelope, mailing it to a lab and waiting for results.
The most obvious and common reasons for home DNA kits is for paternity and maternity testing. More than 30% of men in the United States who have taken a paternity test have found out that the child they believed was theirs was actually fathered by another man. The man believed to be the father swabs his cheek and the child in question is also tested in the same way. The results are sent off and the results will show whether or not there is a DNA match. Obviously, no DNA match means no paternity. The same applies for maternity testing. It is not a foolproof method however because cheating is possible. This is why paternity/maternity tests do not stand up in court.
Long Lost Relatives
While paternity/maternity testing can tear a family apart, home DNA testing can also be used to bring a family together. If you suspect that someone you know may actually be a brother or sister, you can take a DNA test. Thousands of lost long siblings and family members have been reunited in this manner. Home DNA tests may hold the key to creating a family tree. Ancestors and relatives can be discovered by digging through genetic databases. Ancestors can be discovered from centuries ago because the Y chromosome does not change for generations.
A home DNA testing kit is also useful when it comes to finding out whether or not you are predisposed to contract certain medical conditions. There are hundreds of maladies that may be hereditary. If your parents or grandparents suffered from a serious illness, you have the right to know if you will be afflicted by it too. However, if a genetic test shows that you are predisposed to suffer from a medical condition, it does not mean you will definitely contract it during the course of your life. There is always the chance that the illness could skip a generation for example.
Home DNA testing has changed the lives of millions of people around the world. Instead of wondering “what if?”, they can get definitive answers to searching questions that have plagued them for years. Home DNA testing can discover the identity of an unknown parent, reunite you with long lost relatives or inform you of a hereditary disease. Although the results of these tests are not 100% accurate, they are often more than enough proof for most people to rest easy.