Any one who knows me knows that i'm very passionate about the HIV and AIDS crisis. I've had friends live with this disease and die by this disease. From here on out, I don't want anymore of my friends and family members contracting the disease. I don't want their friends or family members contracting it, or theirs. Let's keep the ball rolling. The people that I know with the disease have been living wonderful and full lives. They take care of themselves and stay informed.
Now it's your turn to stay informed.
- Know your own HIV status and your partner’s too
- Condoms Keep you safer than any other form of birth control. Not counting Abstinence of course.
- If you are in a committed relationship (so you aren't using condoms), and know that your partner has cheated or even suspect it, get tested. If you decide to stay with him/her, start using condoms again.
- Never reuse or share anything you use to prepare or inject your drugs.
- If you are pregnant, or think you might be, please talk to a doctor or your local health department about getting an HIV test
The are various types of HIV test that you can receive are:
Antibody Tests: The most common HIV tests look for HIV antibodies in your body, rather than looking for HIV itself:
- Enzyme immunoassay (EIA) tests use blood, oral fluid, or urine to detect HIV antibodies. Results for these tests can take up to two weeks.
- Rapid HIV antibody tests also use blood, oral fluid, or urine to detect HIV antibodies. Results for these tests can take 10–20 minutes.
If you get a positive result from either of these tests, you will need to take another test, called a Western blot test, to confirm that result. It can take up to two weeks to confirm a positive result.
These tests are not as common as antibody tests, but they can be used to diagnose HIV infection earlier—from 1-3 weeks after you are first infected with HIV. Antigen tests require a blood sample.
PCR Test (Polymerase chain reaction test)
This test detects the genetic material of HIV itself, and can identify HIV in the blood within 2-3 weeks of infection.