How is HIV transmitted through Sex #WorldAIDSday

Today is World AIDS day. A day set to remind people about Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). 

It’s an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness. 

HIV can be contracted through SEX, shared needles, shared syringes and other equipment that exposes to the HIV infected blood, shared razor blades, blood transfusion of infected blood, transmission from infected pregnant mother to infant, and occupational needle-stick injury.

In this post, I will review the different ways HIV is sexually transmitted.

How women can catch HIV:

A woman can get HIV during vaginal sex because the lining of the vagina and cervix may allow HIV to enter her body if her male partner’s body fluids carry HIV, including blood, semen (cum), and pre-seminal fluid (pre-cum). Using condoms or medicines to protect against transmission can decrease this risk.

Though the risk of HIV transmission through oral sex is low, several factors may increase that risk, including sores in the mouth or vagina or on the penis, bleeding gums, oral contact with menstrual blood, and the presence of other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

Anal sex is the highest-risk sexual behavior for HIV transmission. It is possible for sex partners to get HIV through anal sex from certain body fluids—blood, semen (cum), pre-seminal fluid (pre-cum), or rectal fluids—of a person who has HIV. Anal sex is also one of the ways women can get HIV.

How men can catch HIV:

Men can also get HIV from having vaginal sex with a woman who’s HIV-positive because vaginal fluid and blood can carry HIV. Men can get HIV through the opening at the tip of the penis (or urethra); the foreskin if they’re not circumcised; or small cuts, scratches, or open sores anywhere on the penis. Using condoms or medicines to protect against transmission can decrease this risk.

Though the risk of HIV transmission through oral sex is low, several factors may increase that risk, including sores in the mouth or vagina or on the penis, bleeding gums, oral contact with menstrual blood, and the presence of other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

Anal sex is the highest-risk sexual behavior for HIV transmission. It is possible for sex partners to get HIV through anal sex from certain body fluids—blood, semen (cum), pre-seminal fluid (pre-cum), or rectal fluids—of a person who has HIV. The vast majority of men who get HIV get it through anal sex. 

Safe activities:

  • Abstinence

 

  • Activities like oral sex, touching, and kissing carry little to no risk for getting or transmitting HIV.

Take home points: Reduce your risk of catching HIV by

  • Knowing your HIV status. Knowing your partner’s HIV status.

 

  • You can lower your risk for getting and transmitting HIV by using condoms the right way every time you have sex.
ADVERTISEMENT

 

  • Choosing lower risk sexual activities.

 

  • Taking daily medicine to prevent HIV, called pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).

 

  • Taking medicines to treat HIV if you have HIV, called antiretroviral therapy (ART).

 

 

Reference:

https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/risk/index.html

https://www.worldaidsday.org/about/

https://www.avert.org/professionals/hiv-around-world/sub-saharan-africa/nigeria

Written by Dr. Ngozi Onuoha

Image designed by Dr. Ngozi Onuoha

ADVERTISEMENT
Please follow and like us:
Facebook
Pinterest
LinkedIn