Today is world AIDS day and even though we have come very far with the virus over the last 20+ years, many people still remain uneducated about the true facts. So, we decided to give you five common misconceptions about HIV to help you become more educated in the subject.
1. Can HIV be spread through mosquitos and other insects?
No. HIV does not reproduce and cannot survive within insects. There is also no evidence that mosquitoes can transmit HIV and is regardless to the location of where they are.
2. Can HIV be spread though saliva, tears, sweat and toilets?
No. HIV can only be spread through semen, vaginal fluid, blood or milk from an HIV-infected person. It is not possible to get HIV through breathing the same air, eating food handled by others, sharing phones, clothing and cutlery, or hugging and kissing them.
3. Will HIV automatically spread to an unborn baby?
Pregnant women with HIV have plenty of options to reduce the risk of their child being HIV positive. It is possible that a woman who is treated for the virus early in her pregnancy has about a 2 percent chance of having an HIV-positive baby. However, without treatment the risk rises to around 25 percent.
4. Do you have to use contraception if both partners are HIV positive?
Safe sex is extremely important if you and your partner both are HIV positive. There are different variations of the virus, and you can be infected with a type you don’t already have. This can make the treatment for the virus a lot more difficult.
5. Is HIV/AIDS a death sentence?
AIDS related deaths have dropped by a massive 42 percent since 2004 according The United Nations. As of June 2015, around 16 million people were receiving treatment for HIV — twice the number of those receiving treatment in 2010.
Times are changing, as more people speak up about living with HIV or AIDS people start to realise you can be HIV positive and still live a long and happy life.Treatment and support are huge factors in the recovery process and get better everyday throughout the world.
There you have it; five of the most common misconceptions surround HIV/AIDS. Hopefully you have learnt something from this and can use it to help educate others about the virus.