In the 1980’s, scientists discovered HIV. You might think, everyone already knows all about this virus, right? Wrong! Some questions about this virus still get frequently asked. We’re going to be mentioning and answering a few of them.
Before we jump right in, let’s define HIV. HIV is an acronym for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It is a virus that attacks your body’s immune system, making it difficult for it to fight off infections and diseases. HIV invades important cells in your body, uses those cells to make more copies of itself, and then destroys them. If left untreated, HIV may lead to AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way. Let’s get to the main gist.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
1. How is HIV Transmitted?
Contrary to common belief, HIV is not transmitted through unprotected sex alone. It can be transmitted through other means like, transfusion of unscreened blood, breastfeeding of a child by an infected mother, and sharing of unsterilized sharp objects. It is however most commonly transmitted through unprotected sex and through injection drug use.
2. Can I Get HIV By Kissing, Hugging, e.t.c.?
HIV is only transmitted through body fluids like blood, semen, breast milk, vaginal fluid and rectal fluid. It can therefore not be transmitted through hugging, kissing, hand shaking, and other non-sexual physical contact.
3. How Can I Tell If I Have HIV?
Many people who have HIV don’t have symptoms at all for many years. Here’s a shocker, it is possible to have HIV for 10-15 years without showing symptoms. This is why it is advisable to get tested. Don’t wait for symptoms to show up!
4.Are HIV and AIDS The Same?
Let’s look at it this way; HIV is a virus, and AIDS is a syndrome. They are not the same thing. HIV is a virus you can catch and spread to other people, while AIDS is a syndrome that develops with time in people that have HIV, and have not had the right treatment or any treatment at all. If properly treated, HIV will not develop into AIDS.
5.Will I Die If I Have HIV?
With proper treatment, anyone with HIV can live as long and healthy as someone without HIV. HIV is not a death sentence.
At Vaccine Network for Disease Control(VNDC), we are passionate about sensitizing communities about HIV. Vaccine Network for Disease Control is implementing the 4gates project in Delta state, Nigeria. VNDC works with health facilities to identify and support HIV infected and affected households.Aside this, the team carries out community HIV testing and links those positive to treatment and care. In 2020 alone, VNDC carried out HIV testing for 1300 beneficiaries and sensitized 2114 adolescents in Warri and Delta State.
More information about VNDC’s contribution to HIV prevention, treatment and care can be found on our website- thevaccinenetwork.org and social media channels. Twitter: @VaccineNet_NG Instagram: Vaccine_network