First of all, let’s make sure we’re all on the same page about HIV. That’s because this virus interferes with your immune system, weakening it so that it can’t fight diseases that enter your body and try to take hold and make you sick.HIV is related to but distinct from Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, or AIDS. If you are diagnosed with AIDS, that means that HIV has damaged your immune system and as a result, you are getting sick because your body can’t fight back against other infections.Since that’s not how most adults operate, the good news is that there are an increasing number of ways you can protect yourself against becoming infected with HIV, while still being able to connect sexually with your HIV positive partner.Latex and polyurethane condoms (both male/external and female/internal types) are a literal physical barrier against HIV — the holes in those materials are too small for the virus to get through.With proper medication and care, you can get the number of these copies very low, reducing the likelihood of transmission significantly.The only foolproof way of not getting an STD is not having sex in the first place.Notice fluids not on this list, including spit, sweat, and tears.Let’s say you know that the other person in question has HIV in their system.
The main ones are having unprotected sex (we’ll get to protection tools later) with someone who has HIV and sharing needles with someone living with HIV when you inject drugs.What this really means is that in order for you to be exposed to HIV, the other person who could be exposing you to it needs to have it.The fluids through which HIV can be transmitted are blood, semen, precum (also called pre-seminal fluid), vaginal fluid, breast milk (only for mother-to-child transmission), and rectal fluids, also called anal mucous.However, the same isn’t true for lambskin condoms, which are more porous and allow HIV to pass through.Possibly the most exciting and definitely the newest prevention tool available is Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, or Pr EP. Pr EP is a pill you take every day, and if you do that you can be protected from HIV by up to 99 percent.
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