What to know before testing DNA?

When you get a DNA test kit, you will receive a set of instructions to…

When you get a DNA test kit, you will receive a set of instructions to take a DNA sample from your body to the laboratory. You will be asked to spit into a tube or wipe your mouth with a cotton swab. For example, some people have difficulty producing enough saliva for a saliva test. If you often suffer from dry mouth, consider a cheek swab test. Another trick is to think of lemons, the taste of lemons. Sometimes just the thought can cause the saliva in the mouth to increase. Saliva is not a pleasant subject. So, instead of imagining the bitter taste of lemon in your mouth and your face cringing a little at the sour taste that makes you drool, let’s talk about some important things you should know.

Knowing which provider to choose

Of course, you also need to know which provider to contact when it comes to DNA testing. Each provider is characterised by the different services they offer, and of course you need to choose the right one. For example, some agencies specialise in paternity tests. You can then choose between a home paternity test or a real legal paternity test. DNA tests use some of the same information when it comes to health and lifestyle information. This is indeed a matching process, but instead of looking for relatives, test providers look for matching characteristics, especially genetic markers for certain diseases and traits.

Different kinds of tests

In general, there are three different types of tests: autosomal, Y-DNA and mtDNA. Nowadays, autosomal testing is the most common. They can be obtained from both males and females and can be traced back to both sexes. Y-DNA testing can only be done on males and can be traced back to the lineage of father to grandfather and great-grandfather. mtDNA is maternal, allowing you to trace your ancestry through your mother, her mother and her mother. Autosomal testing can give you high-quality genetic information going back about four or five generations. Because Y-DNA and mtDNA testing focuses more on one side of the line, you may get information going back further, but less data on the family structure. Of course, there are also paternity tests that prove who the real father of a child is. This can be useful when it has to be proven whether someone is the father in the case of non-recognition and/or refusal to pay child support.