AIDS and HIV Information

Reducing The HIV Risk Factors

What is a risk factor?  It is something that raises your chances of getting a disease or a condition.  Risk factors for AIDS are well-known and following some safety procedures can reduce your risk.  Certain lifestyles increase your risk factors of getting the HIV virus and AIDS.  It is possible to get the virus with or without some of these risk factors; but the more risks you have, the higher your chances are of developing AIDS.

Some risky behaviors that will increase your risk of developing AIDS are simple to learn and to avoid.  The first is having unprotected sex with someone you know has had multiple partners, both homosexuals and heterosexuals.  Most people who have the HIV virus or AIDS got it by not following safe sex habits.  Having sexual relations with someone who is infected with the HIV virus is the biggest risk factor getting AIDS.  The danger of having unprotected sex with multiple partners is that AIDS virus is often not detected until the person has developed serious signs of the disease. 

The signs of the HIV virus may only include mild flu-like symptoms after being infected.  As the disease progresses the flu-like symptoms occur again but are much stronger in intensity.  If you know you are at risk for getting the HIV virus, you should have a test to find out if you are positive for having HIV antibodies. 

If you are using a condom there is still a danger of being infected by the HIV virus.  Condoms are not foolproof.  They can be broken, or tiny tears can allow the virus to be transferred from one person to another.  The vagina, vulva, rectum, mouth, and penis call provide entry points for the HIV virus.  Remember, having unprotected sex with one person is like having sex with all of their previous partners also.

Did You Know? 

There are some ways you cannot get AIDS! Many of these myths persisted for years after scientists proved AIDS could not be transferred in these ways.

You cannot get AIDS from food or water. Again, it is only transferred by sexual contact or contact with body fluids of an individual who has HIV or AIDS. Yes, I know there was a myth flying around you could get AIDS by getting a mosquito bite, but again this is not true. Insects and animals cannot transfer the virus to a human. It is fine to adopt a pet from a person who has AIDS. Giving blood cannot give you AIDS.

The danger is in receiving tainted blood that has been donated by someone who has AIDS. Since 1985, this has been rare because all donated blood is run through tests to insure it is not infected with HIV. It is safe to give blood because all medical equipment used is sterilized and clean.

Last, you cannot get AIDS from having every-day contact with a person suffering from AIDS. Shaking hands, giving a hug, or being in the same room with an AIDS patient will not cause you to be infected.

If you are a drug user you will be at higher risk for getting infected with the HIV virus.  Many drug users use contaminated needles and other drug paraphernalia.  If you are a drug user, contact your community health service to ask about a needle and syringe exchange program.  Many times, they will provide you with clean needles and syringes to help prevent the spread of AIDS.  Even a tiny speck of blood can transfer the HIV virus.

There are certain medical conditions that can put you at higher risk for developing AIDS.  If you already have a sexually transmitted disease such as syphilis, genital herpes, gonorrhea it gives you an increased risk of getting the HIV virus from an infected partner. 


AIDS Facts

If you have increased risk factors for developing AIDS, you should have a test done regularly every year.

Some medical procedures may put you at an increased risk too.  Blood supplies were not tested for the HIV virus before 1985.  Contaminated blood, platelets, or plasma can infect an otherwise low risk, healthy person with the HIV virus.  Since the blood was not tested, there were many cases of a person getting AIDS because of a blood transfusion.  Two other risk factors are from receiving transplanted organs and from artificial insemination.



Better Your Health

HIV and AIDS Information and Resources
World Health Organization’s AIDS Staging
History of AIDS Looking Closer at the HIV Virus and AIDS
Living With HIV and AIDS
Know the Basics about AIDS
What are the Causes of AIDS
Homeopathic Ways of Treating the AIDS Patient
AIDS and the Nervous System
Options If You Are HIV Positive
The AIDS Patient and Opportunistic Infections
Advanced Signs of the HIV Virus
Tests For the HIV Virus
Other Health Concerns For The AIDS Patient
Prayer And Spirituality Used In The Treatment Of AIDS
How To Prepare For Your AIDS Medical Appointment
Aids and Viral Complications
Parasitic Infections Common to HIV Patients
AIDS Related Lymphoma
Treating AIDS Related Lymphoma
Serious Complications Associated With The HIV Virus
White Blood Cells And AIDS
Neurological Complications Associated with AIDS
What To Do If You Think You Might Have Aids
New Developments In AIDS Research
Coping With Your AIDS Diagnosis
The Symptoms of HIV Infection
Education Is The Key To Stopping the AIDS Epidemic
The Emphasis Must Be On Prevention for HIV and AIDS
AIDS Medical Terms
Take An Active Role In Your AIDS Medical Treatment
Reducing The HIV Risk Factors
Keeping A Positive Outlook For AIDS Patients
Acupuncture To Relieve The Side Effects Of AIDS Treatment
A Healthy Lifestyle Can Help You Treat AIDS
AIDS Patients Are In It For Life
Basic AIDS Information
Do You Need To Let Everyone Know That You Are HIV Positive
Important Vitamins and Minerals for a Person with HIV
Treatments Available for the Patient with HIV or AIDS
Ways You Cannot Get The HIV Virus
Treatments Available for the HIV Positive Woman
Understanding the Basics of HIV
The United States AIDS Policy
Treatment Guidelines for the AIDS Patient
Treating Serious Illnesses in The AIDS Patient
HIV Transmission
How The HIV Virus Progresses
The Fear the AIDS Stigma Brings
I Tested Positive For the HIV Virus: What Now
How To Tell Other People You Are HIV Positive
Facts And Myths Regarding HIV Transmission
Some Recent Advances In The Fight Against AIDS
Preventive Measures You Can Take Concerning HIV Infection
Dates In AIDS History
The Impact of AIDS On MSM, Men Who Have Sex With Men
Dealing With Malnutrition For The HIV Infected Person
Know Your Personal HIV Risk Factors
Keeping Yourself AIDS Free
Are Condoms Effective As Protection Against AIDS Transmission
Juicings Possible Benefits To The Person With HIV
What Are The Initial Signs and Symptoms of HIV Infections
Five Classes of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating AIDS
Dietary Needs And The HIV Patient
Misconceptions About AIDS
Oh No I have AIDS
The Staggering AIDS Statistics
Exercise May Boost Your Imune System
Aids And The Toll On Families
Immunization Needs For Adult AIDS Patients
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome: The Basic Facts
Is There A Silver Lining in The Cloud of AIDS
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