Can Hiv/aids Be Prevented
You can reduce the risk of spreading HIV by:
- Getting tested for HIV
- Choosing less risky sexual behaviors. This includes limiting the number of sexual partners you have and using latex condoms every time you have sex. If your or your partner is allergic to latex, you can use polyurethane condoms.
- Getting tested and treated for sexually transmitted diseases
- Not injecting drugs
- Talking to your health care provider about medicines to prevent HIV:
- PrEP is for people who don’t already have HIV but are at very high risk of getting it. PrEP is daily medicine that can reduce this risk.
- PEP is for people who have possibly been exposed to HIV. It is only for emergency situations. PEP must be started within 72 hours after a possible exposure to HIV.
NIH: National Institutes of Health
What Is Hiv And Aids
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus is a virus that infects the immune system. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome . AIDS is the most advanced stage of the HIV infection and causes the immune system to become vulnerable to other infections. HIV can also be known as “the AIDS virus.”
The full name for AIDS describes several of the characteristics of the disease.
Acquired indicates that it is not an inherited condition.
Immune Deficiency indicates that the body’s immune system breaks down.
Syndrome indicates that the disease results in a variety of health problems.
It takes on average, 5-10 years for the initial HIV infection to progress to AIDS if not treated. While there is presently no cure or vaccine for HIV, with proper medical care, HIV can be managed and a near-normal lifespan can be expected with early treatment.
Stay Away From Illegal Drugs
Youâre at high risk for HIV if you share needles or syringes with others. The safest thing to do is to not share needles. Use only new, sterile needles. Some drugstores even sell them without a prescription. If you canât get fresh needles, you can clean used needles with bleach, but you still have a chance of getting HIV from them. Though injected illegal drugs are the most dangerous, any type of recreational drug use can raise your risk. This is because they lower your inhibitions and make it more likely youâll have unprotected sex. This raises your chances of getting HIV. If you do use drugs, always carry condoms.
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Nicole Cutler Lac Mtcm Dipl Ac
Nicole Cutler, L.Ac., MTCM is a long time advocate of integrating perspectives on health. With a Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience from the University of Rochester and a Master’s degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine from Five Branches Institute, Nicole has been a licensed acupuncturist since 2000. She has gathered acupuncture licenses in the states of California and New York, is a certified specialist with the National Acupuncture Detoxification Association, has earned diplomat status with the National Commission of Chinese and Oriental Medicine in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology and is a member of the Society for Integrative Oncology. In addition to her acupuncture practice that focuses on stress and pain relief, digestion, immunity and oncology, Nicole contributes to the integration of healthcare by writing articles for professional massage therapists and people living with liver disease.
Top Tips For Oral Sex
It can take a while to work out what makes someone feel good. The best thing to do is to keep communicating with your partner. Ask them to tell you what feels nice and let them know when you are enjoying something.
If youre happy and comfortable with someone, oral sex can be a great way to get physically closer and learn what turns each other on. If you find you arent enjoying something you can stop at any time you want, and the same is true for your partner.
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Sex Toys Fingering Fisting And Hiv
Sex toys, such as dildos, come into direct contact with rectal/vaginal fluids and mucous membranes. This means sharing an uncleaned dildo or other toy can pass on HIV. Using sex toys on your own has no risk.
There is no direct risk of HIV from fingering or fisting , but be aware of being rough. Damage to anal/vaginal tissues, especially if there is any bleeding, will increase risk of HIV transmission if you then have anal, vaginal or oral sex later.
Get Tested For Hiv Regularly
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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How Are Hiv And Aids Treated
Medicines can help people with HIV stay healthy. They can also prevent HIV from progressing to AIDS.
Health care providers prescribe a combination of different medicines for people with HIV and AIDS. They must be taken exactly as prescribed or they won’t work. These medicines:
- help keep the number of CD4 cells high
- reduce the viral load of HIV
Regular blood tests will check the number of CD4 cells in the body and the viral load.
If an HIV-positive person’s CD4 count gets low, doctors prescribe daily antibiotics. This prevents pneumocystis pneumonia, which happens in people with weakened immune systems.
How Do People Get Hiv
HIV spreads when infected blood or body fluids enter the body. This can happen:
- during sex
- through sharing needles for injecting drugs or tattooing
HIV also can pass from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth, or breastfeeding.
HIV is NOT spread through:
- pee, poop, spit, throw-up, or sweat
- coughing or sneezing
- sharing eating utensils or drinking glasses
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Don’t Misspeak About Aids
Language and how we use it is very important. It reveals a lot about what we think and how we feel. When talking about AIDS, there are a number of disrespectful and dehumanizing words we may use unintentionally.
There are no “AIDS victims”
One of the most important changes we should make is to stop using the term victim to refer to people who are living with AIDS. By calling someone an AIDS victim we are saying that he or she is powerless in the face of this disease and should have no hope. We should instead use our words to emphasize the strength and the hope of those fighting AIDS.
There are no “innocent victims”
Early in the epidemic — and even today, unfortunately — it was common for people to talk about the “innocent victims” of AIDS who caught the disease “through no fault of their own.” This implied that anyone who caught the disease because of doing something unsafe was some sort of guilty perpetrator of AIDS who deserved to suffer a terrible death. This sort of judgment, which casts some as innocent and lays blame on others, serves only to increase the stigma attached to this awful disease. No one with AIDS deserves to have it. No one deserves to suffer.
There are just people with AIDS
Do not ask how a person caught HIV
What Activities Are Safe
While certain sexual activities, such as mutual masturbation, barrier-protected oral sex, and oral to anal contact have little or no risk of HIV transmission, some of these activities may have the potential for transmitting other STIs. While HIV is transmitted only by blood, semen, vaginal fluid, and breast milk, other STIs can be transmitted by simple genital skin-to-skin contact or oral sex.
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Is Hiv And Aids An Occupational Concern
Where ever there is the possibility of contact with blood in the workplace, workers should take precautions to prevent contact with the skin, eyes or mucous membranes .
Routine Practices are recommended to prevent the spread of HIV in the workplace. Routine practices are based on the principle that all blood, body fluids, secretions, and excretions except sweat, non-intact skin, and mucous membranes, unless they contain visible blood, may contain transmissible infectious agents. Steps involve using protective clothing such as gloves, gowns or aprons, masks and protective eye wear when dealing with people’s blood and other blood-contaminated body fluids such as semen and vaginal secretions. They also do not apply to saliva except in dentistry where saliva is likely to be contaminated with blood.
Hand washing after contact with blood, blood-contaminated body fluids and soiled items is also recommended to reduce the risk of infection.
The best approach to most diseases is to prevent their occurrence – occupationally-related diseases are no exception. In the case of HIV, prevention is the only cure.
Who Is At Risk For Hiv Infection
Anyone can get HIV, but certain groups have a higher risk of getting it:
- People who have another sexually transmitted disease . Having an STD can increase your risk of getting or spreading HIV.
- People who inject drugs with shared needles
- Gay and bisexual men, especially those who are Black/African American or Hispanic/Latino American
- People who engage in risky sexual behaviors, such as not using condoms
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How Do You Give A Woman Oral Sex
Before you begin giving a woman oral sex, she may enjoy it if you spend some time kissing and touching her upper thighs and the area around her vagina first, to help her get aroused.
The whole genital area is sensitive, but for most women the clitoris is the most sensitive part. Gently part the outer lips of the vagina and look for the vaginal opening, and the hooded clitoris just above it.
Start off softly, using a relaxed tongue to make slow movements and work up to faster movements with a firmer tongue. You can experiment moving your tongue in different ways and try different rhythms taking cues from your partner to find out what she enjoys most.
Occupational Groups At Risk Of Exposure To Hiv
According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, the following list indicates the occupational groups most at risk of exposure to the human immunodeficiency virus.
- Surgeons, Nurses and Nurses Aides are at risk of needle stick injuries, cuts from sharp instruments and exposure through skin lesions to potentially infectious blood and body fluids
- Physicians and Laboratory Workers continuously handle infectious samples. Doctors, in diagnosing HIV patients, carry out physical examinations and collect blood samples. Laboratory technicians analyze potentially infected samples
- Ambulance Workers are potentially at risk because they attend to accidents and fatalities. Blood contact is a possibility for workers when removing injured people from the scene of an accident. The same can be applied to Police Officers and Firefighters
- Dental Workers are exposed daily to the blood and saliva of patients
- Embalmers, embalming the bodies of persons with a HIV infection presents a risk because HIV can live for hours in a deceased body. The same can be applied for Post-Mortem Attendants
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I’m Pregnant And Have Hiv Will My Baby Get Hiv
If you are getting treatment for HIV, the answer is most likely no. When HIV medicine is used consistently and correctly, a pregnant woman living with HIV who is treated for HIV early in her pregnancy can lower the risk of delivering a baby with HIV to less than 1%. Without treatment, this risk is about 25% in the United States.6
All women need to be tested for HIV during their first prenatal care visit, early in the pregnancy. High-risk women who get a negative HIV test result should be tested again later in pregnancy.
Treatment, called antiretroviral therapy, works best when it is:
- Started as early as possible in pregnancy
- Also given during labor and delivery
- Given to the infant after birth
If you are HIV-positive and your viral load is greater than 1,000 copies per milliliter, your doctor may recommend delivering your baby by cesarean .
Get To Know People Living With Aids
Knowing people who are living with HIV helps to humanize the disease and allows you to see beyond the staggering headlines and statistics. AIDS isn’t really about numbers and risk groups-it’s about people, about friends and family, co-workers and caregivers.
Most of us are afraid or unsure of ourselves in unfamiliar situations. We also may feel uncomfortable around, or have wrong ideas about, people we don’t know. AIDS is a scary disease. People who have AIDS may seem scary as well. The obvious way to solve this problem is to get to know some people living with AIDS.
It’s important to remember the difference between being HIV positive and having AIDS. People who are HIV positive may be healthy they often look just like everyone else. You probably already know people who are HIV positive, and you just are not aware of it. Unless people tell you their HIV status, you can’t tell who has been infected. You can meet people with HIV anywhere — on the job, at a baseball game, at the grocery store — anywhere you meet people.
Those who have been diagnosed with AIDS, however, are beginning to feel — and show — the effects of a weakened immune system. As the disease progresses, they may need more assistance and support. These are probably the people you will meet if you begin volunteering for AIDS service organizations, whether you are delivering meals, providing practical support, or visiting the AIDS ward.
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Know Your Partners Viral Load Count
For ART to be effective, your partner has to take the medication every day, at the same time each day. Skipping doses can cause the virus to replicate unchecked and possibly mutate into a form thats resistant to the medication. If that occurs, your partners viral load count may increase, which means there is a greater likelihood that the virus can be transmitted to you.
Encourage your partner to get their viral load tested at least twice a year, if not more often. If the results demonstrate undetectable levels of HIV, then Its pretty safe ,” says Monica Gandhi, MD, MPH, associate division chief of the division of HIV, infectious diseases, and global medicine at University of California, San Francisco/San Francisco General Hospital.
Sharing Needles And Injecting Equipment
If you inject drugs, this could expose you to HIV and other viruses found in blood, such as hepatitis C.
It’s important not to share needles, syringes, injecting equipment such as spoons and swabs, or the actual drugs or liquids used to dilute them.
Many local authorities and pharmacies offer needle exchange programmes, where used needles can be exchanged for clean ones.
If you’re a heroin user, consider enrolling in a methadone programme. Methadone can be taken as a liquid, so it reduces your risk of getting HIV.
A GP or drug counsellor should be able to advise you about both needle exchange programmes and methadone programmes.
If you’re having a tattoo or piercing, it’s important that a clean, sterilised needle is always used.
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.
Sex With A Partner That Is Hiv+
Condoms should be used during all sex acts, whether it be oral, anal or vaginal intercourse. Condoms uses correctly and consistently form very good protection against infection with HIV and most other sexually transmitted diseases.
When using condoms, check the expiration date. Condoms kept in a cool and dark place can be used for 4 years after the manufacturing date. Never use oils, creams or Vaseline for extra lubrication when using condoms. Use a water or silicon based lubricant such as KY-Jelly or other brand.
There has been no evidence of spread of HIV infection through saliva. Kissing, including tongue/deep kissing is safe. However, if there are bleeding gum irritations in the mouth deep kissing should be avoided.
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Laboratory Monitoring Of Immune Function To Guide Therapy
Laboratory monitoring determines when antiretroviral therapy should be initiatedand when it should be changed because of toxicity, lack of efficacy, orresistance. The optimal frequency and precision of monitoring depends onnumerous factors, principally the following:
- the expected rate of change of variables of interest
- the expected frequency of events, such as development of resistance,adherence failure, and side effects
- the relative cost of monitoring versus the cost of providingineffective treatment
- the magnitude of the secondary effects of monitoring .
WHO has suggested a pragmatic approach to monitoring, with inexpensive,easy-to-measure parameters for monitoring in low-incomecountries. More specialized markersânamely, CD4 count, viral load, andresistance genotypingâwould be restricted to sentinel sites andtertiary care services , at least initially.
Monitoring to Guide Initiation of Antiretroviral Therapy
If laboratory monitoring is performed, its optimal frequency must bedetermined. The closer patients get to an antiretroviral therapy threshold,the more often they must be tested to detect a CD4 decline that falls withina specific CD4 range. As use of antiretroviral therapy expands in LMICs andas the costs of drugs fall relative to the costs of laboratory monitoring,collecting empirical data and constructing models to compare differentmonitoring strategies is becoming increasingly urgent.
Testing for Primary Resistance
Monitoring Response to Therapy