More commonly known as HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus is a virus that debilitates the body’s defense structure. The primary classification of HIV is HIV-1 and HIV-2, HIV-1 being the more common type. Both of these HIV are persisting viruses that pose a risk to an individual’s health. Fortunately, there are adequate medical remedies for this virus. Proper and consistent therapy or medication can improve patients’ conditions so that they can lead normal lives.
Although HIV-1 differs from HIV-2 in terms of genetic composition, HIV-1 resembles the outcomes of HIV-2 in a patient’s body. The correspondence of these two virus types only amounts to fifty-five percent. It indicates that examinations and care procedures are unlikely to be the same for the two types. HIV-1 is the familiar variety of the virus globally, affecting roughly ninety-five percent of individuals with the virus.
The amount of HIV in someone’s blood, also known as viral load, influences how HIV can transfer. When an individual has a detectable viral load, the quantity of virus in their body is enough to relay HIV. When the viral load is “undetectable,” even though an individual is HIV-positive, they have too little of the virus, and they do not have the possibility of relaying it to their loved ones.
One way of keeping a low virus count is to undergo an intervention known as antiretroviral therapy. This treatment involves consuming several prescribed medicines each day to combat the virus and enable the body to recuperate. Antiretroviral therapy is a consistent form of medication that successfully turns viral load undetectable and makes the patient’s overall health better.
HIV can be acquired when an HIV-negative individual’s blood gets exposed to the bodily liquids of an HIV-positive individual like their blood and substances from the vagina and penis. Blood contact is possible through the mucous membrane, open cuts, and injection. One should keep in mind that HIV is not transferred through a mosquito bite, air, hugs, handshakes, and tears and sweat without HIV-contaminated blood.
This article explains in detail how HIV transmits from person to person.
1. Shared needles
HIV transmission happens when an individual with HIV shares needles with another individual. Syringes can be “shared” when injecting drugs and tattooing. In very uncommon instances, people working in hospitals can come in contact with HIV-infected needles. One can prevent this unusual occasion through strict safety protocols.
2. Sexual intercourse
Engaging in sexual intercourse with individuals infected by HIV will relay the virus. HIV can transfer through semen, vaginal and rectal discharge, and even pre-cum. Drinking HIV drugs regularly and wearing condoms can prohibit the transfer of HIV. Both anal and vaginal sex poses a threat of acquiring the virus, but anal sex has a maximized risk.
3. Breast milk
Another unusual occurrence of HIV transmission is feeding a baby of mother’s milk from an infected mother. A newborn can acquire the virus since pregnancy, too. Fortunately, HIV interventions in the US successfully minimize the chance of relaying HIV from female parent to newborn. This probability was down to one percent.
4. Performing oral sex
One can acquire the virus from engaging in sexual activity involving the mouth, although the chance is minimal. An individual without the virus acquiring HIV from an individual with the virus via oral sex happens very rarely.
5. Blood transfusion
Individuals can acquire HIV via organ transplant and blood transfer involving blood with the virus. Because of the meticulous examinations of concerned departments, the risk of virus transfer via blood transfusion is very small.
A person without HIV bitten by an individual with HIV may acquire the virus. Although very rare, there are recorded cases of these events. The bite on these occasions involved blood and a severe injury of tissue. Transferring HIV via biting in the absence of lesions is not possible.
Although the virus cannot be transferred via saliva, kissing both individuals who have oral bleeding can cause transmission.
8. Eating food that has been munched
Several documentaries are showing that there are instances of babies acquiring HIV via munched food. It can happen when a mother or father who has HIV chews and mixes blood into the baby’s meals.