World AIDS Day


Hello readers. Today, December 1st, marks more than just the rush to buy Christmas presents. It also marks World AIDS day. To commemorate the day, I decided to post some myths (and facts) about AIDS and what you can do to protect yourself from the deadly virus.

MYTH: I can get HIV by being around someone who is HIV positive. 

REALITY: HIV  is not spread through touch, saliva, tears, or sweat. You cannot contract it by breathing in the same air, touching the same doorknob or toilet seat, hugging, kissing or using the same exercise equipment. You CAN contract AIDS or HIV from infected blood, semen, vaginal fluid, or mother’s milk.

MYTH: Only homosexuals and drug addicts contract AIDS.

REALITY: ANYONE can contract AIDS at any time. As a matter of fact, 16% of men and 78% of women who contract AIDS are heterosexual. African-Americans (42,6%), Whites (33.3%), and Latinos (21.4%) have the highest prevalence of contracting the disease.

MYTH: You can’t get HIV from having oral sex.

REALITY: Although oral sex is less risky than other sexual acts, you can still contract HIV from having oral sex with someone who is HIV positive.

MYTH: You can get HIV from mosquitoes.

REALITY: Because HIV spreads through blood, many people think that insects such as mosquitoes can spread the disease. Several studies have shown that there is no evidence to support this. When  mosquitoes or other insects bite, they don’t inject the blood of the person or animal they last bit. In addition to this, the virus has a short lifespan inside insects.

MYTH: HIV is a death sentence.

REALITY: Not necessarily. Thanks to new treatments and antiretroviral drugs, many people with AIDS are living longer and fuller lives. HOWEVER, they ARE NOT a cure! Many of the drugs are expensive and produce a variety of serious side effects. In addition, certain strains of the disease are drug resistant.

MYTH: You would know if someone had AIDS.

REALITY: Many people with HIV don’t show symptoms until several months or even years later. The only way to definitely tell if someone has AIDS or HIV is to take a test.

HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF

Although it is important to be able to separate fact from fiction when it comes to HIV and AIDS, it is equally important to protect yourself (and others) from contracting the disease. Here are a few simple ways to do that.

  • ALWAYS practice safe sex. Safe sex is great sex! Although many people feel that condoms make sex less pleasurable, they can protect you from many sexually transmitted diseases and prevent unwanted pregnancy. Think of this way. What’s more important? 30 seconds of pleasure or years filled with disease and devastation?
  • Limit your sexual partners. Having sex with multiple people at the same increases your risk of contracting the disease.
  • Don’t use the same needle twice! Dispose of all needles after ONE use and do not share them!
  • Get tested! The best way to make sure that you don’t have HIV is to get tested.

For more info visit http://www.avert.org/

3 thoughts on “World AIDS Day

  1. Thank you for helping to raise awareness about this pandemic.

    I would like to say to anyone who reads this: PLEASE GET TESTED. PLEASE HAVE PROTECTED SEX. PLEASE ASK YOUR PARTNERS TO GET TESTED. PLEASE DISENGAGE FROM RISKY SEXUAL BEHAVIOR. PLEASE PRACTICE MONOGAMY. PLEASE TAKE CARE OF YOURSELVES AND YOUR HEALTH. AIDS and HIV are real. Don’t become a statistic.

    These days, ppl with HIV are living longer because of anti-retroviral drugs BUT these very drugs are damaging the body way worse than the virus is. PPL have been known to develop cancer, liver and kidney failure, diabetes and the likes….so you cannot live forever on these drugs. Your organs WILL eventually give out.

    HIV/AIDS doesn’t have a face or a type or a race! Before you get involved with someone, get tested (together), if you’re both negative, remain FAITHFUL to each other.

    PLEASE take YOUR health into your own hands and do not let someone else decide your fate for you. A trip to the clinic before you get sexually involved with a man or woman CAN save you a lifetime of agony and pain. That minute (or 15) of pleasure is soooooo NOT worth it. Be safe y’all!

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