CAC/IT/No 78985

HIV   stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus .It is a virus that infects humans and damages the immune systems thereby allowing opportunistic infections to come in and attack the body.

AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome .It occurs when the immune system lymphatic power has been lowered to the point that it can’t resist infections.

HIV   belongs to a group of RNA (Ribonucleic acid) Virus known as RETRO VIRUS which are capable of changing their RNA to DNA by using an enzyme called REVERSE TRANSCRIPTASE.

HIV destroys the white blood cells called Helper T Cells. HIV can remain dormant in human cells for years and replicates itself as human cells divide.

Eventually, HIV becomes active ,producing many viruses causing the bursting and killing of the Helper T Cells, thus the body immune system is greatly destroyed thereby giving room for opportunistic infections to manifest (such as Tuberculosis, Skin Cancer, Herpes (itching, burning sensation, and oral or genital blisters), Pneumonia etc).

WAYS BY WHICH HIV IS TRANSMITTED

1.      Having unprotected sexual intercourse with infected person.
2.      Through sharing sharp or pointed objects with infected person.
3.      Transfusion of infected Blood or Blood products.
4.      From infected mother to her unborn baby during pregnancy or delivery.

WAYS BY WHICH HIV IS NOT TRANSMITTED

1.      Sneezing
2.      Mosquito bite.
3.      Touching.
4.      Utensils sharing
5.      Holding or shaking of hands.

WAYS OF PREVENTING HIV INFECTIONS

1.      Abstinence from all forms of unprotected sexual intercourse
2.      Being faithful to one uninfected sexual partner.
3.      Consistent and correct use of condom.
4.      Do not share sharp and skin piercing instruments (Clipper, Blade, Needle, String, etc) with people.
5.      Avoid transfusion with an infected person.
6.      During pregnancy, it is essential for an infected mother to use anti-retroviral therapy religiously, while she is advised to deliver her baby in a Clinic that has HIV/AIDS facilities. This is to give room for the health personal to administer preventive drugs on the child not later than 72 hours after delivery.

REFERENCES

1.)               IDODO UMEH COLLEGE BIOLOGY 4TH EDITION.
2.)               PEER EDUCATION TRAINING MANUAL.
3.)               MANUAL FOR TRAINING PEER EDUCATORS (NYSC).

Written By: Cornelius Emmanuel
Cornelius is a 16-year old ABC Scholar And a High School Leaver. He is an ISERH Ambassador and doubles as the Secretary of ISERH AMBASSADOR’S FORUM. He enjoyed the ISERH’s sponsorship of his WAEC consequent to his performance in Aspiring the Best Competition (ABC) Nov. 2014 Edition.

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