Lifestyle Changes And Complementary Treatments
A healthy lifestyle can ease some of the effects of HIV or its treatment:
- Stick to a balanced diet. Energy and nutrients help your body fight HIV. A healthy diet may also let your medications work better and could ease side effects. But be careful to prevent foodborne illness by avoiding raw meat and eggs.
- Get regular exercise. It boosts strength and endurance, lowers your risk of depression, and helps your immune system work better.
- Donât smoke. Smoking can make you more likely to get a serious condition like cancer, pneumonia, heart disease, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease . People with HIV who smoke tend to have shorter lifespans than those who donât.
- Get your vaccinations. Ask your doctor about whether they recommend that you get vaccines against pneumonia, flu, hepatitis A or B, or HPV.
Some people say that complementary therapies — those done in addition to standard medical treatment — help them feel better and live fuller lives with HIV. These may include:
Always talk with your doctor before adding a traditional practice or nutritional supplement to your HIV treatment plan.
Stage : Acute Hiv Infection
Within 2 to 4 weeks after infection with HIV, about two-thirds of people will have a flu-like illness. This is the bodys natural response to HIV infection.
Flu-like symptoms can include:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Mouth ulcers
These symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to several weeks. But some people do not have any symptoms at all during this early stage of HIV.
Dont assume you have HIV just because you have any of these symptomsthey can be similar to those caused by other illnesses. But if you think you may have been exposed to HIV, get an HIV test.
Heres what to do:
What You Can Do
Get tested for HIV. CDC recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care. People with certain risk factors should get tested at least once a year.
If you were HIV-negative the last time you were tested and answer yes to any of the following questions, you should get an HIV test because these things inc rease your chances of getting HIV.
- Are you a man who has had sex with another man?
- Have you had sex —anal or vaginal— with a partner who has HIV?
- Have you had more than one sex partner since your last HIV test?
- Do you have another sexually transmitted disease ?
- Do you have hepatitis or tuberculosis ?
- Have you had sex with someone who could answer yes to any of these questions or someone whose sexual history you dont know?
You should be tested at least once a year if you answered yes to any of these questions. Sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing , depending on their risk.
If you think youve recently been exposed to HIV during sex or through sharing needles, syringes, or other injection equipment , talk to your health care provider or an emergency room doctor right away about taking post-exposure prophylaxis . You must start PEP within 72 hours of a possible exposure, but the sooner you start PEP, the better.
Also, anyone who has been sexually assaulted should get an HIV test as soon as possible after the assault.
Also Check: Cookie Johnson Hiv Positive
Reducing Hiv Risks From Chemsex And Drug Use
- Inject drugs.
- Forget to take your HIV medications.
- Are taking PreP it can be less effective if it is mixed with other drugs.
Symptoms And Stages Of Hiv Infection
- There are three stages of HIV infection. The symptoms vary in type and severity from person-to-person.
- Stage 1 after initial infection can feel like flu but not everyone will experience this.
- Stage 2 is when many people start to feel better and may last for 10 years or more. During this time a person may have no symptoms.
- Stage 3 is when a persons immune system is very badly damaged and can no longer fight off serious infections and illnesses.
- The earlier a person is diagnosed with HIV and starts treatment, the better their health will be over time.
- Some people dont get any symptoms during stages 1 and 2, and may not know they have the virus, but they can still pass on HIV.
The signs of HIV infection can vary in type and severity from person-to-person, and some people may not have any symptoms for many years.
The stages below describe how HIV infection progresses in the body if it is left untreated. Without antiretroviral treatment for HIV, the virus replicates in the body and causes more and more damage to the immune system.
However with effective treatment, you can keep the virus under control and stop it from progressing. This is why its important to start treatment as soon as possible after testing positive.
Also Check: Can Hiv Lay Dormant
Caring For An Hiv+ Family Member Or Friend
HIV cannot penetrate healthy skin. In order for it to enter the body, there must be a break in the skin. As a safeguard against contact with blood or body fluids, a person providing care for bleeding wounds should wear disposable gloves. This is a precautionary measure to ensure that the person is not exposed to the virus through tiny cuts in the hands that may be unnoticed.
The infected person should reserve a thermometer for personal use. It should be washed with warm soapy water after each use, soaked in rubbing alcohol for 10 minutes, dried and stored.
How Is Hiv Diagnosed
An HIV antibody test, either from a blood sample or an oral sample , can tell whether you have been infected. A negative test result means no HIV antibodies were found. This usually means you are not infected. However, if you engaged in behavior that could spread the virus within three months of having the test, antibodies may not be detectable and you should be re-tested. A positive test result means antibodies to HIV were found. This means you are infected with the virus and can pass HIV to others even if you have no symptoms. You are infected for life. Even if you think you have a low risk for HIV infection, consider getting tested whenever you have a regular medical check-up.
Don’t Miss: How Long Can Hiv Lay Dormant
How Can I Protect Myself
The only foolproof way of not getting an STD is not having sex in the first place. Since thatâs not how most adults operate, the good news is that there are an increasing number of ways you can protect yourself against becoming infected with HIV, while still being able to connect sexually with your HIV positive partner.
Fever And Night Sweats
People with HIV may experience long periods of low-grade fever. A temperature between 99.8°F and 100.8°F is considered a low-grade fever.
The body develops a fever when something is wrong, but the cause isnt always obvious. Because its a low-grade fever, those who are unaware of their HIV-positive status may ignore the symptom.
Sometimes, night sweats that can interfere with sleep may accompany fever.
HIV-positive women may also have more severe premenstrual symptoms.
Also Check: Does Cookie Johnson Have Hiv
Get Tested Regularly If You Are At Greater Risk Of Hiv
If you are at greater risk of HIV get tested regularly.
Gay, bisexual, trans and other men who have sex with men should get tested every 3 months . This may vary depending on how many sexual partners you have during the year.
Talk with your doctor or sexual health specialist for advice. They can also provide information about how to reduce your risk for HIV and other STIs.
What Are The Treatments For Hiv/aids
There is no cure for HIV infection, but it can be treated with medicines. This is called antiretroviral therapy . ART can make HIV infection a manageable chronic condition. It also reduces the risk of spreading the virus to others.
Most people with HIV live long and healthy lives if they get and stay on ART. It’s also important to take care of yourself. Making sure that you have the support you need, living a healthy lifestyle, and getting regular medical care can help you enjoy a better quality of life.
Read Also: How Does Cookie Johnson Not Have Hiv
Articles On Sore Throat
Everyone knows what a sore throat feels like. Itâs one of the most common health complaints, particularly during the colder months of the year, when respiratory diseases are at their peak.
The raw, scratchy, burning feeling at the back of your throat is often the first warning sign that you have a cold, or that the flu is on the way. But it can also be the first symptom of more serious conditions, so you should watch how it develops.
Call your doctor if your sore throat feels worse or lasts longer than the run-of-the-mill type.
The Quick & Dirty Guide To Telling If Someone Has An Std
Getting tested for STDs is the only way to know with 100 percent certainty whether someone has an STD. However, there are certain signs and symptoms that can be useful if youre worried about how to tell if someone has an STD. We cannot stress enough that the most common symptom of STDs are no noticeable signs or symptoms at all!
Also Check: Can You Get Hiv From Dried Blood
How Can A Woman Reduce Her Chances Of Contracting Hiv
HIV is transmitted through bodily fluids like blood and semen. Using injection drugs, having unprotected sex and having multiple sex partners increases the chances of acquiring HIV. The only way to be absolutely certain you do not become infected with HIV is to not have sex and not use injection drugs. You also can avoid infection by only having one sex partner as long as your partner does not have HIV and has sex only with you. According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention , using a male or female condom every time you have vaginal or anal sex can greatly lower your risk of infection. Using condoms for oral sex will reduce your risk for other STDs as well. It also is important not to douche, since douching removes some of the normal vaginal bacteria that can protect you from infection.
Side Effects Of Hiv Treatment
People on current HIV treatments may experience mild side effects including:
- tiredness and fatigue
- skin rashes.
If you are on treatment, see your doctor every 3 to 6 months.
Regular blood tests are necessary to make sure your treatment is working and not causing serious side effects. It is recommended that you also get tested for STIs and talk to your doctor about your sexual health and overall wellbeing. Ensure you are having routine screening for cancers and keeping your vaccinations up to date.
You May Like: Hiv 1 2 Antibodies
Assessing High Risk For Hiv/aids
How Can You Tell If Someone Has An Sti
In short, determining for certain whether you or your partner has a sexually transmitted infection is impossible without having an STI test.
Some STIs can be transmitted not only by penetrative sex, but also by genital or bodily contact.
We have listed some of the obviously recognisable signs of common STIs here, but we will also discuss how you can find out if you or your partner has an STI which has yet to show symptoms, and provide some guidance on how to avoid contracting STIs in future.
You May Like: Does Cookie Johnson Have Aids
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Hiv
No two people with HIV will have the same symptoms, and some may not have any at all. But the infection can cause some common changes over time.
In the first few weeks: These first, flu-like symptoms happen because your body is reacting to HIV. Your immune system is trying to fight it off. The symptoms at this stage can include:
- Aches and pains in muscles and joints
Keep in mind that even if you have these symptoms, that doesnât automatically mean you are HIV-positive. Many different illnesses can cause these problems. Talk to a doctor or an HIV testing facility if you think you might be infected.
At this early stage of HIV infection, itâs important to know that you may not get accurate results from an HIV test. It can take 3-12 weeks for enough signs of the virus to show up on routine tests for the infection, which measure antibodies against HIV. A new kind of screening, called a nucleic acid test, can detect the virus itself during this early stage, but itâs expensive and not usually used for routine HIV testing.
Let the testing site or your doctor know if you think you might be recently infected. Also, be sure to use a condom every time you have sex, and take other steps to prevent spreading the virus.
After years with untreated HIV, youâre likely to get infections caused by bacteria, viruses, or fungi that your body is no longer strong enough to fight off. They can be a sign that your infection has gone from HIV to AIDS. You might have:
- Weight loss
How Often Do You Need To Get Tested For Hiv
How often you should get tested depends on your personal practices, risk behaviours, and how often you engage in them.
For most people, it is important to have a full sexual health test at least once each year. This testing includes:
Even if you always use condoms, it is recommended you get tested annually as condoms dont provide 100% protection against HIV and STIs.
Don’t Miss: Can You Get Aids From Dried Blood
What Are The Symptoms Of Hiv
Dr Dutt says most people with HIV experience a short illness with flu-like symptoms. This normally occurs 2-6 weeks after HIV infection and can last for a couple of weeks.
“Once these symptoms eventually disappear, you might not notice any symptoms for many years, even though the virus can continue to damage your immune system.
“This ultimately means that many people with HIV won’t realise they’re infected, unless they get tested for it,” she explains.
Other symptoms of HIV besides flu include:
- Swollen lymph nodes around the neck and groin.
- Skin rashes.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Hiv And Aids
When first infected with HIV, a person may have:
- increased number of infections
- infections that are more severe than is typical
Without treatment, HIV can lead to a very weakened immune system and progress to AIDS. Illnesses that happen in AIDS are called “AIDS-defining conditions.”
AIDS-defining conditions include:
- very fast and severe weight loss
- a lung infection called pneumocystis pneumonia
- Kaposi sarcoma
You May Like: Does Nba Youngboy Have Hiv
Symptoms Specific To Men
It’s important to note that these male-specific symptoms can also be signs of other conditions. If you have any of these, make sure to speak with your doctor.
- Breast tissue growth
Pain or burning while peeing. In most cases, this is a symptom of a sexually transmitted infection like gonorrhea or chlamydia. It may signal swelling of the prostate, a small gland beneath the bladder. This condition is called prostatitis. Itâs sometimes caused by a bacterial infection.
Other symptoms of prostatitis include:
- Pain during ejaculation
- Peeing more often than usual
- Cloudy or bloody pee
- Pain in the bladder, testicles, penis, or the area between the scrotum and rectum
- Lower back, abdomen, or groin pain
If you think you may have been exposed to HIV, see a doctor right away. If itâs been 72 hours or less, you can take something called post-exposure prophylaxis . You take HIV medicine once or twice a day for 28 days that may keep you from getting HIV.
If you have been exposed to HIV, there are other symptoms that aren’t exclusive to men but are important to keep an eye on.