Thursday, July 18, 2024

How Can You Protect Yourself From Hiv And Aids

Will Treating Someone For Stds Prevent Them From Getting Hiv

HIV: How to Protect Yourself and Others

No. Its not enough. Screening for STDs can help assess a persons risk for getting HIV. Treatment of STDs is important to prevent the complications of those infections, and to prevent transmission to partners, but it should not be expected to prevent spread of HIV.

If someone is HIV-positive and is diagnosed with an STD, they should receive counseling about risk reduction and how to protect their sex partner from getting re-infected with the same STD or getting HIV.

Health care providers with STD consultation requests can contact the STD Clinical Consultation Network . This service is provided by the National Network of STD Clinical Prevention Training Centers and operates five days a week. STDCCN is convenient, simple, and free to health care providers and clinicians. More information is available at www.stdccn.orgexternal icon.

How Can I Protect Myself

The best way to protect yourself from HIV is to not have sex and not share needles.

If you decide to have sex, reduce your risk of getting HIV by:

  • using a condom every time you have sex
  • getting tested for HIV and making sure all partners do too
  • reducing the number of sexual partners you have
  • getting tested and treated for STDs having an STD increases the risk of HIV infection

Understanding how HIV spreads can help you make safer choices about sex. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions about HIV and if you want to get tested.

Syphilis Treatment Can Be Less Effective In People With Hiv

Having HIV may also make syphilis harder to treat. This may be due to HIVs impact on the immune system.

A assessed syphilis treatment in 510 people with and without HIV, finding treatment was ineffective in 10.94 percent of people. Being HIV-positive was associated with a three-fold increase of ineffective syphilis treatment or syphilis reinfection.

A looked at the medical records of 560 people with both HIV and syphilis. While the type of syphilis treatment used didnt impact the outcome, several other factors associated with ineffective syphilis treatment were found, including:

  • low levels of antibodies in a rapid plasma reagin syphilis test
  • a previous history of syphilis
  • CD4 count lower than 350 cells per milliliter

The process for diagnosing syphilis in people living with HIV uses the same types of tests as for HIV-negative individuals. Lets explore this further.

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How Does Hiv Spread

HIV spreads when infected blood, semen or vaginal fluids enter the body. Because symptoms can be mild at first, people with HIV might not know they’re infected. They can spread HIV to others without knowing it.

HIV can spread:

  • during sex
  • through sharing needles for injecting drugs or tattooing

HIV also can pass from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth, or breastfeeding.

HIV does not spread through:

  • pee, poop, spit, throw-up, or sweat
  • coughing or sneezing
  • sharing eating utensils or drinking glasses

Contaminated Blood Transfusions And Organ/tissue Transplants

Protect Yourself

If adequate safety practices are not in place, healthcare workers can also be at risk of HIV from cuts made by a needle or sharp object with infected blood on it. However, the risk of occupational exposure, is very low in most countries.

If you think you have been exposed to HIV, the only way to find out if you have HIV is to have an HIV test.

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What Is The Risk Of Getting Hiv Hepatitis B Or Hepatitis C

The risk of getting HIV, hepatitis B or C depends on the amount of virus in the blood or body fluid and the type of contact. For example, a piercing through the skin poses a greater risk than a splash on the skin.

The emergency department health care provider will tell you whether your exposure puts you at risk of these infections.

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How Can I Help Protect My Children From Hiv

One way to help protect your children from HIV is to talk to them about HIV, AIDS, and the sexual behaviors that raise their risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections . The earlier you start talking about it, the better. By the third grade, almost all children have heard about HIV.7

According to a 2013 national survey of high school students:8

  • About half of all students have had sex at least once
  • One-third are sexually active
  • Nearly half of the students who are sexually active did not use a condom the last time they had sex

Get tips on talking to your children about HIV in our Communication Skills Building section.

Send your teens to our Know The Facts First website for teen-friendly information on STI prevention.

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How Is Hiv Recognized

Doctors use laboratory tests to confirm HIV infection. The Elisa and Western Blot analyses identify people who have been exposed to HIV. These tests determine if the blood contains particular antibodies that result from contact with the virus. They do not identify who among a group of infected individuals will develop the disease. The presence of antibodies or HIV markers means the person has been infected with HIV but no one can predict when and if they will get AIDS related symptoms.

Doctors diagnose AIDS by blood tests and the presence of specific illnesses such as pneumocystis carinii pneumonia or Kaposi’s sarcoma. These diseases overcome the weakened immune system and are responsible for the high death rate among AIDS patients.

Watch Out For ‘miracle Cures’

Protecting Yourself and Your Partners from HIV

Some treatments are advertised for AIDS as “miracle cures” or as having some “secret ingredient.” They are not approved by FDA. They have not been scientifically tested. There is no proof that they work. They could even hurt you. Don’t use anything to treat HIV or AIDS unless your doctor or clinic says it is o. k.

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What Is Art And How Does It Help Prevent Hiv

Antiretroviral therapy is a combination of medicines that slows down the effects of HIV in your body and can help you stay healthy for many years. It can also lower or even stop your chances of giving HIV to anyone else.

ART lowers the amount of HIV in your body sometimes to the point where HIV wont show up on standard blood tests. If your HIV viral load is so low that certain tests cant see it, its called undetectable. When someone has an undetectable viral load, they cant spread HIV to others during sex.

Its important to remember that even with an undetectable viral load, HIV is still present in your body. If you stop treatment your viral load can go up, making it possible to pass HIV to others you have sex with. Your doctor or nurse can help you find the treatment thats best for you to help keep your viral load low, so you can stay healthy.

How Is Hiv Transmitted

The person-to-person spread of HIV is called HIV transmission. People can get or transmit HIV only through specific activities, such as sex or injection drug use. HIV can be transmitted only in certain body fluids from a person who has HIV:

  • Blood
  • Vaginal fluids
  • Breast milk

HIV transmission is only possible if these fluids come in contact with a mucous membrane or damaged tissue or are directly injected into the bloodstream . Mucous membranes are found inside the rectum, the vagina, the opening of the penis, and the mouth.

In the United States, HIV is spread mainly by:

  • Having anal or vaginal sex with someone who has HIV without using a condom or taking medicines to prevent or treat HIV
  • Sharing injection drug equipment , such as needles, with someone who has HIV

HIV can also spread from a woman with HIV to her child during pregnancy, childbirth , or breastfeeding. This is called perinatal transmission of HIV. Perinatal transmission of HIV is also called mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

You cannot get HIV from casual contact with a person who has HIV, such as a handshake, a hug, or a closed-mouth kiss. And you cannot get HIV from contact with objects, such as toilet seats, doorknobs, or dishes used by a person who has HIV.

Use the You Can Safely ShareWith Someone With HIV infographic from HIVinfo to spread this message.

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How Can You Protect Yourself From Hiv And Stds

  • Avoid or put off having sex. If you do have sex, use a male latex or female condom every time.
  • Latex male condoms and female condoms, when used the right way every time, are very effective in preventing HIV and many other STDs. Condoms may prevent the spread of other STDs like HPV or genital herpes, only when the condom covers the infected areas or sores.
  • Talk with your partner about HIV and STDs.
  • Dont share drug works
  • Get STD and HIV counseling and testing.

To find out if you might have an STD, visit your doctor or clinic as soon as you can.

How Long Does It Take To Develop The Disease

Thank to PrEP and PEP, you can protect yourself and love ...

There is no fixed period between the first contact with HIV and the development of the disease. Signs and symptoms resulting from infection with HIV develop in stages. Many infected individuals may have no symptoms for several years. But others may develop symptoms within three years from the time of infection.

Symptoms of HIV infection are fever, swollen lymph glands in the neck and armpits, sweating, aches, fatigue, unexplained weight loss and diarrhea.

Within eight years, about 50 percent of all infected people develop specific conditions categorized as AIDS. These conditions include a lung disease called “pneumocystis carinii pneumonia,” skin tumours called “Kaposi’s sarcoma,” fungal and viral infections such as candidiasis and herpes zoster, and severe diarrhea.

Some AIDS patients also suffer from dementia resulting in problems with memory and thinking. AIDS patients are prone to various infections of the brain, just as they suffer from an unusually high number of cancers, bacterial and viral infections of other parts of the body.

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How Can You Protect Yourself From Getting Hiv

Practicing safer sex using barrier protection correctly during penetrative sex, such as condoms or insertive condoms can prevent HIV transmission. Avoiding sharing sex toys and using barrier protection when using them, can be a way to protect yourself. Practicing safer sex also helps protect you from other treatable infections such as Chlamydia and Gonorrhea.

Using your own disposable needles or other drug equipment i.e. pipes, bills, straws, cookers, etc.

Getting tested for STIs regularly.

Future Outlook Of Hiv Treatment

The great news is that a lot of progress has been made in terms of HIV prevention and management.

A person living with HIV can prevent the disease from progressing into AIDs by taking HIV treatment drugs known as antiretroviral therapy. People who are HIV-positive should receive regular vaccinations to protect themselves from diseases. They should also practice safe sex and take care of their bodies by staying active, reducing stress, and eating healthy to preserve their immune system.

You may be wondering how much does

Treatment cost per year?

After all, this medication must be taken for the entirety of a persons life, and the cost of HIV treatment can certainly add up.

HIV treatment drugs are, unfortunately, quite expensive without insurance, costing an average of over $23,000 per person. Some medications are covered under insurance plans, Medicare, and Medicaid, which can help to lower the costs.

There are several programs and services that provide financial assistance so people living with HIV can receive the proper medication, such as the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, AIDS Drug Assistance Program, and non-federal Patient Assistance Programs.

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is working to develop new HIV treatments and alternatives to prescription medication, such as injections or implants. They have been developing long-acting HIV drugs that can neutralize antibodies to attack and even kill HIV-affected cells.

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Are You Aware Of Your Status

All individuals should get tested for HIV at least once a year. Below are options for local testing sites:

The most common HIV tests look for HIV antibodies. Enzyme immunoassay tests use blood, oral fluid, or urine to detect HIV antibodies and can take up to two weeks. Rapid HIV antibody tests use blood, oral fluid, or urine to detect antibodies and take 10-20 minutes to receive results. If you test positive for HIV after taking an EIA or rapid antibody test, you will need to take another test, called Western blot test, to confirm that result. It can take up to two weeks to confirm a positive result.

The FDA has approved one home testing kit. Home Access HIV-1 Test System is not an HIV testing kit, but allows you to collect samples of your blood to send for laboratory testing. For more information, read Testing Yourself for HIV-1, the Virus that Causes AIDS.

For more information on HIV testing, visit

Get Tested For Hiv Regularly

HIV PrEP: Protect Yourself Against HIV

If youre currently HIV negative, its important to be tested for any change in your status. If a test shows youve contracted the virus, your risk of spreading it to someone else is greatest in the acute phase, or the first two to four weeks after being infected. During that period, the viral load spikes, increasing the likelihood youll transmit the virus. Although some people experience flu-like symptoms in the acute phase, many are not aware that they are infected because they dont feel sick at all or might not feel sick until later, according to the CDC.

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What Is The Link Between Syphilis And Hiv

In the United States, approximately half of MSM with primary and secondary syphilis were also living with HIV. In addition, MSM who are HIV-negative and diagnosed with P& S syphilis are more likely to be infected with HIV in the future. Having a sore or break in the skin from an STD such as syphilis may allow HIV to more easily enter your body. You may also be more likely to get HIV because the same behaviors and circumstances that put you at risk for getting other STDs can also put you at greater risk for getting HIV.

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Rates Of Three Major Sexually Transmitted Diseases Appear To Be At Their Highest

Rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis went up in 2016, the third year in a row, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions recently released annual report on sexually transmitted diseases.

In total, more than 2 million cases of these three bacterial STDs were reported in the U.S. last year, the highest number ever, according to the CDC report. A majority of the cases1.6 millionwere chlamydia.

Chlamydia infections rose by 4.7 percent in one year, gonorrhea by 18.5 percent, and syphilis by 17.6 percent.

While these conditions can usually be cured with antibiotics, according to the CDC, if left untreated they can lead to serious health consequences, including pelvic inflammatory disease, infertility, stillbirth, and increased risk of HIV transmission.

A question thats arisen is whether the CDC statistics reflect a true escalation in infections.

Better reporting may play a role, notes Philip Chan, M.D., an assistant professor of medicine at Brown University and medical director at the Rhode Island STD Clinic at The Miriam Hospital in Providence. But a lot of us suspect there is a real increase as well.

What might be causing a genuine increase isnât clear at this point. People could be using fewer condoms and having more partners, says Chan, who adds that researchers dont yet have a lot of evidence that condom use is falling.

As we await additional data, hereâs what to know to protect yourself and those you love from STDs.

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What About Oral Sex

The best way to reduce the risk of becoming infected with HIV while performing oral sex is to maintain good oral hygiene. That, in addition to not flossing or brushing your teeth right before or after performing oral sex, will also reduce the risk of transmission.

Performing Oral Sex on a Woman When performing oral sex on a woman, a dental dam or common kitchen plastic wrap can be used as a barrier to protect from HIV transmission. It covers the area you are performing oral sex on . If you do not have a dental dam, you can also use a new, unused, non-lubricated or flavored condom by stretching it out and cutting it down the side, then stretching it out in the same way you would a dental dam or plastic wrap.

Performing Oral Sex on a Man In addition to good oral hygiene, proper use of a non-lubricated or flavored condom on a man can significantly decrease risk of HIV transmission. If a condom is not available or an option, not accepting semen into the mouth or spitting rather than swallowing will reduce the risk. You can also use the harmonica method by focusing on the shaft of the penis while avoiding the head.

Performing Oral Sex on the Anus For oral to anal contact, or rimming, a dental dam, plastic wrap, or a condom can be used in the same way described above under the heading Performing Oral Sex on a Woman. This can be a great barrier against not only HIV, but possible hepatitis A exposure.

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