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How do you get HIV?

HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. HIV is found in blood, semen, vaginal fluids, and breast milk. The virus spreads mainly through unprotected sex/ sexual contact. You can also get HIV by sharing needles. HIV can take up to ten years to show symptoms or get someone really sick. The only way you can ‘tell’ whether or not somebody has the virus is by getting an HIV test. HIV damages your immune system so that one might not be able to fight of common illnesses that someone without HIV would be able to fight off. These illnesses include small things, such as the common cold. HIV cannot be cured. HIV can, in some cases, develop into AIDS. HIV becomes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) when an HIV-infected persons T-cell count goes below 200 or when they develop one or more opportunistic infections. AIDS requires medical treatment, or it can result in death. You can prevent HIV/AIDS by having protected sex (using male/female condoms), abstinence, and by not sharing needs needles. Make sure to attend Curtis High School’s HIV/AIDS week, February 9- February 12.

Teen Health Educator
Sophomore / CHS

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