Five myths and realities about HIV

Although there is extensive knowledge about the forms of transmission and prevention of HIV, there are people who have formed false ideas about the disease. Find here the most common

Five myths and realities about HIV

The acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) represents the most advanced stage of infection by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

In the latest global report published in Paris by Onusida, which is built according to El Mostrador based on the Spectrum model that makes estimates and projections of the epidemic, it was revealed that the global landscape of the response to HIV is at a precarious point .

Leer en español: Cinco mitos y realidades sobre el VIH

Onusida notes that "new infections are increasing in about 50 countries, AIDS-related deaths are not decreasing enough and about 40% of patients still have no access to treatment."

Although many people have a wide knowledge about the forms of transmission and prevention of HIV, a few others are unaware of this condition and great prejudices are formed around it. Find here a list of HIV myths and their realities:

1. MYTH: Sharing spaces like bathrooms or giving hugs and kisses to an infected person can make me infected.

REALITY: According to the Ministry of Public Health, the transmission route of HIV is through direct contact with fluids of high concentration of the virus; that is, blood, semen, vaginal fluids and breast milk.

Then, the forms of getting infected are reduced to unprotected sexual encounters, perinatally to the baby, during a blood transfusion with contaminated needles or during labor and lactation.

2. MYTH: Infected people become a threat when handling food.

REALITY: HIV is a virus that dies when in contact with air and the possibility of transmission is lost. That is why if someone infected is cut, the virus that is in the blood dies.

Also, it is impossible to get infected through the bite of a mosquito, because the virus can not survive outside the human body by not finding the T cells with which it multiplies.

3. MYTH: Infected people can not have children.

FACT: Infected people can have children naturally and safely. In fact, today there are many alternatives for the child to be born without HIV, as a treatment with antiretrovirals before pregnancy and throughout pregnancy.

4. MYTH: I can not get HIV because I'm not gay.

FACT: No person is exempt from being infected with the virus. In fact, according to El Independiente de Hidalgo, the majority of HIV positive people are heterosexual.

The risk has nothing to do with the sexual orientation of the people but about the care that is taken at the time of having sex. A heterosexual man or woman who does not use protection has a higher risk of becoming infected than a homosexual who practices safe sex.

5. MYTH: Using two condoms is better than one.

REALITY: On the contrary, using two condoms simultaneously increases the friction between them, so the possibility of breaking them is greater.


LatinAmerican Post | Luisa Fernanda Báez

Copy Edited by Laura Viviana Guevara Muñoz