HIV/AIDS is a virus that spreads through body fluids that affect particular cells in the Immune System, which are CD4 or also known as T-cells. Over a span of time, HIV can kill so many of these cells that the body cannot fight off infections/ diseases. When this happens, he infection of HIV leads to AIDS.
Our question is: How might HIV/AIDS affect someone's life on a daily basis?
The System it affects
HIV/AIDS affects the immune system. The Immune system is the body's defence against infectious organisms and other invaders. Through multiple steps called the immune response, the immune system attacks organisms and substances that attack body systems and cause illness/disease. How the immune system works is fascinating! It is a system that is made up of a network of cells, tissue, and organs that work in unison to protect the body. The cells imvolved are white blood cells, or leukocyte, which come in 2 basic forms that combine to find and destroy diseases - causing organisms or diseases.
Is there a cure, or can it be prevented?
Currently, there is no cure for HIV/AIDS but there are treatments HIV/AIDS. But there treatments for people who live with HIV/AIDS. If you have HIV/AIDS, you take combinations of medicines called "cocktails". The "cocktails" are designed to strengthen the Immune system to stop HIV from developing into AIDS during its early stages, or to relieve AIDS symptoms. These drugs are costly, and may have serious/ uncomfortable side affects, and they are not over the counter. They may only work for certain people and for limited periods of time. But, with the help of "cocktails" people who live with HIV/AIDS are able to lengthen their lifespan for many years.
Of course this doesn't mean that you cannot prevent yourself from HIV/AIDS, you most definitely can! To prevent HIV/AIDS, you can:
- Limit your number of sex partners. The less partners you have, there are fewer chances of you encountering someone who is infected with HIV or another STD.
- Get tested and treated for STDs and insist partners to do so too.
- Use contraceptives every time you want to have sex, it reduces the risk of HIV/AIDS or any other STD's.
- Make sure your immune system is strong and that you eat healthy and exercise.
There are multiple organizations that support and help and try to find cures for HIV/AIDS, for example:
- Global AIDS/ HIV organizations - Canadian foundation for AIDS research - The international AIDS vaccine initiative - The HIV medicine association (HIVMA)