Monday, December 01, 2008

Bloggers Unite: World AIDS Day

Bloggers Unite
Today is December 1 - World AIDS day. To help raise awareness and to hopefully help someone understand AIDS better, I am joining with other bloggers across the world to post about AIDS. I don't know of anyone in my world who has AIDS or HIV, but I know that it's something that affects all of us in some way. Today, I visited and found lots of information about awareness campaigns. I also visited and found some interesting information. I knew most of this, but I wanted to post it here, just in case someone reading this does not know.

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is caused by HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). By killing or damaging cells of the body's immune system, HIV progressively destroys the body's ability to fight infections and certain cancers. Over one million Americans are living with HIV/AIDS today. Worldwide, the figure is over 33 million. Effective HIV care—including antiretroviral drug therapies and regular access to primary health care—can help people manage their HIV disease and live longer. (

I also thought it was well worth posting this information, as there are still a lot of misconceptions about AIDS out there and prevention is so important.

HIV and AIDS are life threatening conditions. There is no cure yet for HIV/AIDS. The transmission of HIV occurs through three well documented means: 1) having sex (anal, vaginal, or oral) with someone infected with HIV; 2) sharing needles and syringes with someone infected with HIV; and 3) being exposed (fetus or infant) to HIV before or during birth or through breast feeding. HIV transmission can be prevented through avoiding behaviors that expose someone to the means of transmission and by taking preventive measures if identified risk behaviors occur.

To protect yourself, do not inject illicit drugs and remember these ABCs:

B=Be Faithful

HIV is not transmitted through day-to-day activities such as shaking hands, hugging, or a casual kiss. You cannot become infected from a toilet seat, drinking fountain, doorknob, dishes, drinking glasses, food, or pets. You also cannot get HIV from mosquitoes. (

I can't describe how terrifying it is to take that test and wait for its results. When my ex husband and I split up and I found out he had been unfaithful, I went to the doctor and asked to be tested for everything. Thankfully, I was negative for all possible diseases and six months later I was still negative - and then a year later, still negative. By that time, my doctor told me I was absolutely fine and didn't need to test again, so I was, needless to day, extremely relieved. It was an ordeal I never wanted to have to go through and one I never want to go through again.

So if you have engaged in risky behavior, such as unprotected sex, please get tested for your own peace of mind and for your future partners. Let's stop the spread of this disease. Nobody should be getting AIDS anymore, not since we know how to prevent it.

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