Prevention is better than no cure. A doctor's visit. Hello there. What can I do for you? Doctor. I've heard a lot about HIV but I don't really understand what it is. Could you explain please? Sure. It's a very serious health topic. HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It is a deadly virus that causes the condition AIDS. It can kill you. What? It can kill me? Isn't that a cure for it? No there is no cure for HIV or AIDS. It can affect anybody who is not careful. Since there is no cure, prevention is the best defense. It is important to know the facts so you can protect yourself and stop it from spreading. Why is it dangerous and how does it kill? Okay. Let me explain it to you. Why is this dangerous? A body is like a country with a defense system called the immune system. Every country has a defense system with commanders and jawans to protect the country from foreign attackers. Similarly, our body's immune system army protects us from foreign germs and infections. Our skin is like a strong wall which protects us from many attacking germs. Inside our body, our immune system army chiefs, also known as CD4 T-cells, maintain order among the jawans to keep us healthy and fit. Our jawans follow all the commands of the army chief to kill different foreign attackers. One type of foreign attacker, is a virus. Have you heard of flu, measles, chicken pox, polio, cold and cough? These are all viruses. One of the deadliest viruses in the world is HIV. The Human Immunodeficiency Virus. HIV cannot survive in the air, like some other viruses and you cannot get it from the air. However, HIV is very powerful and dangerous if it enters your body. This virus is deadly because it is able to attack the army chiefs and kill them. HIV starts multiplying and takes over the body. This is when a person is HIV positive. Without the army chiefs, the jawans do not know what to do and therefore, are unable to fight against any foreign attackers. All the time, HIV destroys so many army chiefs in the body that the immune system finally collapses. When this breakdown of the immune system happens, a person is said to have aids or applied immune deficiency syndrome. AIDS patients are so vulnerable to infections that even very weak germs can cause serious infections or death. A major problem in India. HIV AIDS is a global problem. India has one of the largest number of people living with HIV AIDS in the world. It is important to know all the facts, so we can prevent others from getting infected. HIV AIDS can affect any one, man or woman, girl or boy, rich or poor, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian or any religion. It can affect anyone. Of all the people in India who have HIV or AIDS, 90% of them do not know they are infected. You, or someone you love could have it. So it is important to understand the facts. Know the facts. Is it easy to get HIV? No, it is not easy. You cannot catch HIV from the air like cold and cough, nor can you get it from food or water. You cannot get HIV from any animals such as chickens or cows. It can only survive and travel through certain human body fluids. All humans have fluids in their bodies. For example, tears sweat and saliva, the liquids in your mouth. The virus can only be passed through tree fluids. This is a three point mantra; three point mantra, one blood. Two, breast milk. Three, sexual fluids. OK. What about other body fluids? How do I know which ones are safe and which ones are dangerous? Good question. Let me explain. How does someone get infected? Part one; High risk fluids. There are two categories of body fluids, the high risk dangerous fluids and the no risk safe fluids. HIV can only be passed through high risk fluids which are blood, breast milk and sexual fluids, our three point mantra. Blood is a high risk fluid. The virus can enter from sources like blood transfusions, used razor blades or used needles and syringes. Sometimes it can pass from a mother to child while the mother is pregnant, during childbirth or through mother's milk. Blood and breast milk are high risk fluids. HIV can pass through sexual fluids if they are directly transferred from an infected person to someone who is not infected. These are high risk fluids. HIV cannot spread through any other fluids. It cannot spread through saliva, saliva is a no risk fluid. It cannot spread through mucus, which is nose fluids or cough. Mucus is a no risk fluid. It cannot spread through sweat. Sweat is a no risk fluid. It cannot spread through tears. tears are no risk fluids. It cannot spread through body waste, urine and stool are no risk. How does someone get infected? Part two, direct transfer. Remember, our skin is like a thick wall which protects us and HIV cannot survive in the air. The virus must find a way to have direct transfer into your body in order to survive. What is direct transfer? Direct transfer can take place in two ways; First, direct transfer occurs through cuts or wounds on skin, which allow the virus to enter blood. These cuts can occur anywhere on the body or direct transfer can occur through natural openings in bodies like mouth, or private parts. Remember, the virus cannot survive in the air like the flu or cold and cough. The virus is powerful, only if it enters the body through direct transfer. How do you know if you might be infected? Use the triangle test. Step one. Is there a high risk fluid? If no, stop here. There is no HIV risk. If yes, proceed to step two. Step two, is there direct transfer? If no, stop here. There is no HIV risk. If yes, proceed to step three. Step three, there is a possible HIV infection. Go see a doctor. But I heard that you can be infected if someone with HIV or AIDS coughs on you. Is this true? Let's look at the diagram again. This time you answer the questions through my doctor's challenge. Doctor's challenge, when asked a question, think of the correct answer. Remember the triangle test. Can you get HIV from someone sneezing or coughing on you? No, you cannot. Let's find out why? Are saliva and mucus high risk fluids? No, they are not. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from someone sneezing or coughing on you. Can you get HIV from sharing a needle with someone? Yes you can. Let's find out why? Is blood a high risk fluid? Yes it is. Is there a direct transfer? Yes there is. Then, there is a possible HIV infection. Go see a doctor. You can get HIV from sharing a needle with someone. Can you get HIV from shaking someone's hand? No you cannot. Let's find out why? Is skin a high risk fluid? No, it is not even a fluid. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from shaking someone's hand. Can you get HIV from a toilet? No you cannot. Let's find out why. Are urine and stool high risk fluids? No, they are not. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from a toilet. Can you get HIV from animals such as cows or chickens? No you cannot. Let's find out why. We do not have to go through the triangle test because you cannot get HIV from animals or insects, only from humans. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from animals or insects only from humans. Can you get HIV from hugging someone? No you cannot. Let's find out why. Is sweat a high risk fluid? No it is not. Therefore, there is no chance of an HIV infection. You cannot get HIV from hugging someone. Can a baby get HIV from breast milk? Yes they can. Let's find out why. Is breast milk a high risk fluid? Yes it is. Is there a direct transfer? Yes there is. There is a possible HIV infection, go see a doctor. A baby can get HIV from breast milk. Can you get HIV from kissing? No you cannot. Let's find out why. Is saliva high risk fluid? No, it is not. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from kissing. Can you get HIV from unprotected sex? Yes you can. Let's find out why. Are sexual fluids high risk? Yes they are. Is there direct transfer? Yes there is. Then there is a possible HIV infection. Go see a doctor. Both males and females can get HIV from having unprotected sex. Can you get HIV from a mosquito bite? No you cannot. Let's find out why, we do not have go through to the triangle test, because you cannot get HIV from animals or insects, only from humans. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. But Doctor, mosquitoes suck human blood. Why is there no risk of infection? Good question. Mosquitoes are a special case. Let me show you why there is no risk of infection. Let's look at the triangle test. Is blood a high risk fluid? Yes it is. Is there a direct transfer? No there is not. Mosquitoes only suck blood, they do not inject it. Therefore, there is no direct transfer. Therefore, there is no chance of infection. You cannot get HIV from a mosquito bite or any insect. Just remember, as a general rule, you can only get HIV from humans and not from any animals or insects. Appearances are deceptive. The guessing game. Can you tell by looking at a person whether he or she has HIV or AIDS? Remember, appearances can be deceptive. Who do you think has HIV or AIDS? Wrong. You cannot tell by looking at a person whether he or she has HIV or AIDS. Guess again, who do you think has HIV or AIDS? Wrong again. You cannot tell by looking at a person whether he or she has HIV or AIDS. One more time. Who do you think has HIV or AIDS? Wrong again. You cannot tell by looking at a person whether he or she has HIV or AIDS. Always remember, you cannot tell by looking at a person if he or she has HIV or AIDS. An infected person can look perfectly healthy and work like a normal person. They may not know themselves that they are infected. How do you know there is an infection? Some people show no physical signs of HIV or AIDS for years. Others may show signs like fever, cold and cough, headache, skin rash and sweat. But eventually, everyone who's infected gets extremely sick. Once HIV develops into AIDS, the symptoms are more severe. They become very tired, fall sick and lose a lot of weight. But those symptoms are similar to cold, cough and fever. Exactly. That's the scary part. Early symptoms are similar to colds, cough and fever. Because of this, many people don't know they're infected. If you have been involved with high risk fluids with possible direct transfer, you should go see a doctor and get tested. How do I protect myself from this virus? How do you protect yourself? Remember our three point mantra? In order to get HIV, you must have direct transfer of high risk fluids. Blood; do not share instruments such as razors, blades, needles and syringes. These instruments may be infected with tiny amounts of the virus which you cannot see with a human eye. Donate blood only to blood banks that use sterilized equipment. If you receive a blood transfusion, make sure clean needles and HIV tested blood are used. Blood and breast milk - mother to child; A baby can become infected in the mother's womb during childbirth or through breast milk. But with the help of a doctor, a pregnant woman can prevent the transfer of HIV to her baby. She can still have a healthy baby. Breast milk - mother to child; If you are infected and plan to have a baby, consult your doctor about using powdered milk or some other substitute. Sexual fluids; The bride and groom should get an HIV test before marriage. Remember, 90% of people who are infected do not know. Your partner may not know that he or she is infected. Just get tested. Always use a condom, it can help prevent direct transfer of HIV when used regularly and properly. If you cannot use one because you're trying to have a baby, then you must make sure both of you have been tested. The more partners you have, the more you are at risk. Make sure everyone has been HIV tested. Why is testing important? I know why, there may be no symptoms so testing is the only way to know if you have the virus. Plus, appearances can be deceptive. So testing is the only way to be sure. Very good. It's easy and painless to get tested. Go to the hospital and they will check your blood. It's just like testing your blood sugar. Ask your family doctor about testing. If you do not want anyone to know, go to a public or municipal hospital, where you can get tested anonymously. Although there is no cure for HIV AIDS, there are treatments that will help you live longer. With treatment, chances of infecting loved ones is reduced significantly. It is important to get medical help early. Thank you for teaching me so much. I'm wondering, what can I do to stop the spread of HIV? What can you do to help? Number one, spread the message. It is easy to protect yourself, know the facts and share them with your loved ones. Number two, get tested and encourage others to test, as well. It is better to be safe than sorry. Number three, healthy decisions now will ensure a healthy future. Join our team and together we will teach HIV and AIDS awareness. Let's save our India from being attacked by HIV. Together we will save lives. Let's work together.