What Is HIV

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What is HIV/AIDS?
HIV stands for Human immunodeficiency Virus. This virus weakens a person 's ability to fight infections. During HIV infection, the virus attacks and destroys the infection-fighting CD4 cells, a type white blood cell. The loss of CD4 cells makes it difficult to fight infections, and so, one would be most susceptible to any and every illness. A person with the loss of 200 and more CD4 cells is said to have the more advanced stage of the HIV infection, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDS. This is the stage at which all of a person’s ability to fight infections is lost.

Having HIV does not always mean that you have AIDS. It can take many years for people with the virus to develop AIDS. HIV and AIDS cannot be …show more content…

Talk with your sex partner or partners about their sexual history as well as your own sexual history. Find out whether your partner has a history of behaviours that increase his or her risk for HIV.

Alcohol and drugs
With the use of alcohol or drugs, be very careful. Being under the influence can make one careless about practicing safer sex.
Never share intravenous (IV) needles, syringes, cookers, cotton, cocaine spoons, or eyedroppers with others if you use drugs.

If someone already has HIV
If you are infected with HIV, you can greatly lower the risk of spreading the infection to your sex partner by starting treatment when your immune system is still healthy.
Experts recommend starting treatment as soon as you know you are infected.
Tell your sex partner or partners about your behaviour and whether you are HIV-positive.
Follow safer sex practices, such as using condoms.
Do not donate blood, plasma, semen, body organs, or body tissues.
Do not share personal items, such as toothbrushes, razors, or sex toys that may be contaminated with blood, semen, or vaginal fluids.
If you are pregnant
The risk of a woman spreading HIV to her baby can be greatly reduced if she is on medicine that reduces the amount of virus in her blood to undetectable levels during pregnancy.
Continues treatment during pregnancy.
Does not breast-feed her baby.
The baby should also receive

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