Over the years there’s been lots of misconceptions as regards the much dreaded HIV/AIDS. Information spilling here and there leading to a wide range of assumptions, yet the virus keeps on the rise with each passing day. With this, it has become necessary to arm ourselves with knowledge so as to combat the spread of the disease. While some folks are of the belief that being promiscuous, gay or poor lands you an automatic HIV ticket, factual information reveals otherwise. So as we mark the World Aids Day today December 1st, theme – “Leadership. Commitment. Impact.”, we bring you facts because as we all know information is power! 7 most popular misconception about HIV/AIDS;
1. Kissing, hugging and physical contact is not safe
Contrary to speculation making rounds, HIV cannot be contacted via kissing or any other phyiscal contact for that matter. You only stand a risk if both parties have large open sores or bleeding gums and blood is exchanged. HIV can’t be gotten from sweat or urine, but you can get it through; blood, semen, vaginal fluids, breast milk and the likes.
2. AIDS and HIV are same
Okay, calm down; when someone has HIV it doesn’t automatically mean they’ve got AIDS. While they are related they are different. Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is the most advanced stages of HIV infection, when the immune system becomes extremely weak or fails totally.
3. Sharing cutlery, coughing or sneezing spread AIDS
HIV cannot transmitted simply by eating with the same cutlery or sharing the same food or toilet with an infected person, because the virus does not survive on surfaces. So an individual cannot get the virus through meme touching or coughing, it is completely safe.
4. No sex with infected person
Although the risk is high, the fact that a partner has the virus and the other does not doesn’t ultimately rule out sex – the virus can be prevented from infecting your partner when condoms are used. Condoms help protect against HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
5. Both partners have HIV, so no protection needed
The fact that two partners are infected with HIV doesn’t mean they are at leverage to have sex without protection, there will be consequences which could lead to the advanced stage – AIDS. Every infected person must ensure protection – Even the antiretroviral drugs don’t prevent the passing the virus to others. Use a condom always
6. Infected mother always transmit HIV to infant
An infected expectant mother thanks to recent development many not pass the virus many thanks to development in research. If a mother takes HIV drugs and is virally suppressed, the chances of transmission can be brought to the minimal.
7. AIDS is the end of the road
High mortality rate, this was the case from the early times owing to lack of diagnosis and treatment, however with recent development in medication, care and support, a positive change has been brought about, with more individuals managing the disease leading healthy lives.