World AIDS day is celebrated across the globe on December 1 of every year since 1988. It was, in fact, the first world global health day. With proper treatment and meditation, the spread of HIV/AIDS can be managed. According to UNAIDS research done in 2017, new HIV ailments have reduced by 46%, and AIDS-reduced deaths have decreased by 22%. Here are 5 myths around AIDS busted.
Myth: I can get HIV by being around HIV+People
Fact: Research has shown that one cannot get HIV by- Staying in the same surrounding/environment as a HIV+person, -Touching anything that HIV+person has touched, -Drinking from the same water bottle, -Shaking hands or hugging someone who is diagnosed with HIV+
Myth: Condoms are the only way to prevent HIV
Fact: Although condoms are one of the ways to prevent HIV and STDs, it is not the only way to avert HIV exposure, he/she is prescribed pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) medication. PEP is another emergency medication that can be taken after having unprotected sex or other possible vulnerabilities.
Myth: You can tell if someone has HIV/AIDS by looking at them.
Fact: Symptoms of HIV or AIDS can go unrecognized for years as these symptoms can also be associated with common diseases or conditions. The only way to know if someone has HIV is by getting a test done.
Myth: HIV+People cannot safely have children.
Fact: There are risk of transferring the virus to the child but if the right treatment is started, there are higher chances that the baby may not contract HIV from mother. Once the mother is on HIV medication, she needs to follow that throughout the pregnancy and 4-6 weeks after birth o reduce the risk of transmitting it to her baby.
Myth: HIV is the same as AIDS
Fact: The HIV virus is responsible for AIDS, it does not mean that both are the same thing. A person infected with HIV virus, if left untreated, will develop AIDS over a period which is a serious condition where the person’s immune system is unable to protect.