How to Use DNA Testing to Detect Possible Health Risks

Do you wish to understand more about yourself? Why do I have a blue eye when my father’s eyes are brown? Why am I the odd one out in a tall family?

Do one thing: Order a DNA test kit, Spit into the tube, mail, and ship it off to a genetic testing company.

A few weeks later, log in to the lab’s portal to experience wizardry right before your eyes!    

The findings would predict, to a point of accuracy, things you have verified about yourself like your hair color, eye color, suggest your height and a lot more.

When you see this, don’t freak out. It’s simple: Send me your DNA and I will tell you about you. Oh! I forgot to mention- try as much as possible to get a good test kit. Although, that’s easier said than done. In fact, I could write a whole article on the best DNA test kits (top 6 compared). But not to worry, someone already did.      

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What is DNA?

Deoxyribonucleic acid popularly referred to as DNA is the chemical information store of your body. Basically, it is made up of your genotype which is expressed in your phenotype.

Most times, it is found in the nucleus of cells; where it is compressed to form chromosomes. These chromosomes are the primary unit of hereditary. In other words, when organisms reproduce, a certain portion of their DNA is transferred to the next generation.

So, you see – DNA plays an active role and is a major determining factor in the design of our bodies. 

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DNA testing

However, aside from helping us to understand the complexities of our bodies, DNA is a cheat code to discovering what the future holds for our bodies. DNA genetic testing involves the examination of the DNA.

Through DNA testing, we can discover abnormal changes in your genes(mutation) that could result in the manifestation of certain illnesses and diseases in the future.       

Still, there are many types of DNA testing; however, with a single aim; averting future crisis. 

Carrier testing

Do you understand who the carrier of disease is? Let me illustrate: Suppose the sickle cell trait is represented by the symbol ‘S’ and a normal cell- ‘A’, a person with sickle cell disease has a genotype ‘SS’ while a person with normal cells has the genotype ‘AA’.

However, carriers have the traits of diseases implanted in their bodies without the display of any symptoms associated with the disease. Therefore, they possess the genotype ‘AS’. Since such disorders are transmittable to your children, it is advised that you carry out DNA testing before having children.

Here’s why: carriers have a 25% probability of producing a child with the disease, while a union between a non-carrier and carrier has a zero percent chance of producing such a child.

This way, DNA testing has helped prevent the possible health week that accompanies sickle cell anemia.

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Predictive testing

Dwelling on the fact that DNA has a role to play in hereditary, genetic testing helps determine whether you stand a chance of developing a genetic condition especially if you have a family history of this particular condition.  

Diagnostic testing

If you are exhibiting certain symptoms similar to a different kind of genetic disorder, diagnostic genetic testing is used to confirm which of the suspected disorder is the culprit.

For instance, diagnostic testing is used to confirm a diagnosis of cystic fibrous or Huntington’s disease.  Diagnostic testing helps avert the health risks associated with the treating of the wrong disorder. 

You might need some counseling….

If the result comes out positive, it means you were tested positive for the suspected genetic change and vis-visa if the result comes out negative. Regardless of the result of the DNA testing, talk to your doctor, genetic counselor or geneticist about your worries, fear, and concern.

Doing so would make you more enlightened and help you make the right decisions and steps.   

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