HIV and AIDS contamination are two of the most known, but also the most feared diseases in the world. It is known about them that they are taken especially by sexual means and that they can be deadly. But there are also myths related to these diseases, which give rise to prejudices and bizarre and totally unjustified behaviors towards those suffering from AIDS or infected with the HIV virus!
Myth - If you are infected with HIV, it means you have AIDS!
If you have been infected with HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus), it does not necessarily mean that you have the disease (AIDS - acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). HIV is a virus that destroys the body's CD4 cells, cells that fight AIDS. If the infection is discovered early and treated effectively, you can have the virus in your body for years without giving birth to the disease. You are diagnosed with AIDS if you have the HIV virus in your blood, but also other associated infections or if the number of CD4 cells drops below 200. So, in other words, you can get HIV without necessarily triggering the disease in the body.
Truth - It is almost impossible to contract the HIV virus by simply touching or by regular contact with a person!
You cannot get HIV if you hug a sick person, if you use the same towel or if you share the same glass. In addition it is very difficult to contract HIV and if you kiss with someone. The patient must have an open wound in his mouth for you to contaminate yourself. The most common way of spreading the virus remains unprotected sexual contact. After that, the use of needles or joint injections or tattoos with unsterilized equipment become the main causes of HIV transmission.
Myth - If you have AIDS, you only have a few years to live!
Every person who becomes infected with HIV manifests itself in a certain way. Some may develop AIDS even in the coming months after contracting the virus, while others may live for decades without having AIDS.
Myth - You know when you have HIV, because there are specific symptoms!
Unfortunately, HIV infection is asymptomatic in most cases, and when symptoms appear, it already means that AIDS has occurred. Symptoms are similar to those of other disease (mononucleosis) and include fever, fatigue, irritation and sore throat. Usually they disappear after a few weeks and may not appear for years.
Myth - HIV infection can be cured!
There is no cure to completely cure HIV, but there are many treatments that can keep the virus in check and help you have a strong immune system. Some drugs interfere with the proteins the virus needs to develop, and others prevent the virus from destroying CD4 cells.
Truth - Anyone can get infected with HIV!
This is true! From infants to the elderly, anyone is prone to the risk of getting infected with the dreaded virus if they don't take care of it. The main means of prevention is condom protection during sexual intercourse, avoiding the sharing of those or other medical instruments with another person and avoiding contact with an open wound of an HIV patient.
Myth - Sex is safe if both partners have HIV
Just because both people are infected with the virus does not mean that they no longer have to protect themselves. Using a condom also protects you against other sexually transmitted diseases as well as other strains of the HIV virus, which may prove resistant to the anti-HIV medication you take until then.
Truth - You can have a healthy baby if you are infected with HIV
Women with HIV can make a healthy baby. It is true that you can infect the baby during pregnancy or at birth, but with the help of doctors and proper care you can significantly reduce this risk. Pregnant women can take medicines to treat the infection and thus protect the baby from the flu.