Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Do I Have an HIV Infection?



Question. Do I Have an HIV Infection?



The most common question I get is; Do I have an HIV infection? The fact of the matter is regardless of what symptoms a person may or may not have, the only way to know if there is an HIV infection is by getting an HIV test. This feature does help answer the question; Do I have an HIV infection?.


Answer: Unfortunately, HIV is not as easily diagnosed as you would think. Understandably, people who think they may have been infected are afraid; they are afraid to see a doctor and they are afraid to get tested. These simple steps will help you find out if you have indeed been infected.


Step 1 - Are you having symptoms?
Not everyone who has been HIV infected will shows signs of the infection. Others may have symptoms that are much like other very common illnesses such as the flu. What symptoms if any do you have? Are they symptoms of HIV?


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Step 2 - Get examined by your doctor.
As stated earlier, if you are having symptoms they may be very similar to other common illnesses and infections. If you are feeling ill, don't assume you are infected and don't try to diagnose your symptoms yourself. Find a doctor, schedule an appointment and have he or she examine you thouroughly. Trying to diagnose yourself will make you crazy and may result in serious illness being missed.


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Step 3 - Get an HIV Test
The most important thing you can do for yourself and your partner is to get an HIV test. And HIV test is truly the only sure way you can know whether or not you have been infected. You can get tested by your family doctor, at a free and anonymous testing site in your community, or even by purchasing a home test kit. Get tested and get the peace of mind you are looking for.


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Symptoms and Prevention of HIV & AIDS


The symptoms of HIV can be very subtle or even non-existant initially. Regardless, HIV is a disease that has had a public health impact all over the world. Since the early 1980s, HIV has changed the face of the world we live in. Today, the epidemic continues and for many, HIV is a daily companion. In order to control the HIV epidemic, we all need to learn as much as possible about the disease. For those living with HIV, comprehensive and up-to-date information is an essential part of a healthy life. There's no better place to start our education than at the beginning: HIV symptoms and prevention.


Safer Sex and Prevention


The key to putting a halt to the HIV epidemic is prevention. The HIV/AIDS site at About.com provides a comprehensive collection of safer sex and HIV prevention resources. The first step in controlling HIV is to prevent new infections and safer sex is key. This group of resources provides you with the tools to take that first step toward safer sex and HIV prevention.


Testing and Diagnosis


HIV Testing is the first step to take when trying to find out if you have HIV. Never rely on symptoms of HIV to decide if you are infected. HIV testing is the only way to know for sure. The importance of early diagnosis of HIV can't be overstated. Decades of HIV and AIDS research has proven that the earlier HIV is diagnosed, the better the prognosis and the likelihood of a long, healthy life. So how are HIV and AIDS diagnosed?


The Biology of HIV


HIV is a very complex disease that impacts our body in many different ways. Understanding how HIV works and what it does to our body will help you better understand the disease. Understanding HIV can allow you to take control of the illness and live a healthy, productive life. These resources will explain the biology of HIV.


HIV Symptoms and Associated Illnesses


HIV symptoms, if they occur can be uncomfortable, inconvenient, and can make you sick. While HIV symptoms may not occur initially, most people at some point in time will experience some HIV symptoms or associated illnesses. These resources will help identify and deal with the symptoms of HIV.


Opportunistic Infections


HIV impacts the body's ability to protect itself from illness and infection. When these infections strike, you need comprehensive information to guide you. This collection of resources provides the information you need to recognize opportunistic infections and to take steps to resolve them before your health suffers.


Data & Statistics


The numbers are sobering at times. But the statistics we collect help us better understand the epidemic and take steps to halt its spread. Track the epidemic around the world -- and in your own backyard -- with this collection of current HIV and AIDS statistics.



We're both positive. Do we need to use a condom?

This question is one of the most common I receive and one of the most misunderstood. People feel that once you have HIV, what's the sense in protecting yourself any longer...after all what else could possibly happen? What more could a person get? Well the answer is plenty...unprotected sex between HIV positive people is very risky and can jeopardize the health of both partners. Here's how.
What Are The Best Condoms?

Answer: Sexual contact between two HIV infected people most certainly requires a condom. Different strains or types of HIV can be passed between two HIV infected people, making treatment of the infection even more difficult. This transfer of one HIV strain to another HIV infected person is called reinfection

For instance, if person "A" has an HIV type that has been responsive to therapy and person "B" has an HIV type that hasn't, passing that type of HIV from "B" to "A" will make it harder to treat person "A", possibly making therapy ineffective in person "A" as well. Also keep in mind, condom use is also important in preventing the transmission of other sexually transmitted diseases.

For more information click:
source: About.com






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