Getting Tested Is The New Sexy!

The key to stay safe is getting regularly TESTED for HIV and other sexualdiseases/infections every 3-6 months and knowing HOW to keep yourself safe. Safe Masti is your one-stop solution for testing clinics/labs, useful information on preventing HIV, and de-stigmatising life after HIV. Let’s start now!

Getting Tested Is The New Sexy!

The key to stay safe is getting regularly TESTED for HIV and other sexualdiseases/infections every 3-6 months and knowing HOW to keep yourself safe. Safe Masti is your one-stop solution for testing clinics/labs, useful information on preventing HIV, and de-stigmatising life after HIV. Let’s start now!

Difference between being HIV+ and having AIDS

by | May 11, 2018 | HIV, Living With HIV, Mental Health | 0 comments

Many people presume that the words HIV+ and AIDS are interchangeable. They are not. Calling an HIV+ person an AIDS-infected person is akin to declaring a sick person dead. Let’s take a look at some of the differences between these two words

DEFINITION HIV, which stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus, is just that, a virus that can cause infections in the body. AIDS, which stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, is a condition that occurs when HIV causes irreparable damage to the immune system.

SYMPTOMS You can be HIV+ and not display any symptoms. But one often produces flu-like symptoms a few weeks after the infection and this should act as a red flag. AIDS is a collection of symptoms that result from opportunistic infections. These are infections like TB or pneumonia that a healthy person with a properly functioning immune system would not contract.

DIAGNOSIS A person who doesn’t have any trace of HIV in their body is diagnosed as being HIV-. Anyone who gets infected by HIV is diagnosed as being HIV+. A person is diagnosed as having AIDS when they are in the final stage of HIV infection. This condition occurs when their immune system gets totally destroyed by opportunistic infections and the body is too weak to fight back.

TESTING If your body has been infected by HIV, your immune system will produce antibodies against the virus. These can be detected by conducting a simple and easy blood and/or saliva test. AIDS testing is more complicated. Our bodies contain immune cells called CD4 cells, which should be in the range of 500 to 1,200 in a healthy person. If this count drops below 200, it means that the person has transitioned from being HIV+ to contracting AIDS.

TREATMENT If you have tested positive for HIV, the earlier you start treatment, the better it is for your immune system. Antiretroviral treatment (ART) slows down HIV’s multiplication in the body. So, the human body is able to maintain its immunity for much longer – thereby increasing its ability to heal, fight off diseases and recuperate. Unfortunately, there is no treatment or cure for AIDS.   So, a person can be HIV+ and not have AIDS. BUT, a person who has AIDS will always be HIV+.   Bottom line, get tested regularly to ensure early diagnosis and treatment, arm yourself with proper information on HIV and AIDS, and most importantly, practice safe and protected sex.

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