AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is a fatal disease that targets the immune system of the human body and the infected person’s immune system will be very low that even a simple disease such as a common cold could prove deadly. It is recorded that an estimated 2.2 million people die due to HIV every year. The origin of the virus is unknown, though some believe it was transmitted from apes somewhere in Africa.
Various researches have been undergone by various countries to find a cure for the disease, yet there is no proven cure for the disease till date. Advancements in science and technology had produced various treatments to slow down the progress of the disease, but the drugs are very costly and are not practical in poor countries such as Africa where the disease is widespread and so prevention is the best option.
How it Spreads?
It is important to know how the disease spreads so that we can follow preventive methods:
Sexual Contact: HIV is mainly transmitted through sexual contact from a person who is HIV positive. If an infected person has unsafe sexual contact with another person there is a surety that at the disease will be transmitted. Hence, if you a person who is sexually active and cannot abstain from constant sex, it is advisable that you use condoms and prevent exchange of bodily fluids.
Heredity: It is likely that a parent who is HIV positive is likely to transmit the disease to his/her unborn child.
Blood Transfusion: One of the most lethal attributes about HIV is that the infected person may not know that he is infected with the virus and simple blood transfusion in case of an emergency may lead to giving the gainer HIV. It is reported that 25 percent of infected people are not aware of their disease. The virus can be transmitted through blood transfusions, used needles, shaving blades, etc.
People infected with HIV face a very hard life as they have to undergo frequent medications and be extra careful every time and they are also mentally hurt as they are certain about their inevitable end. And the sad thing is that instead of supporting them in their needful time, many people ridicule and discriminate them and most infected persons cannot live a successful social life. To help these patients gain confidence many counselling is given by government and various social empowerment groups are available where people can share their thoughts with others and gain the confidence to live life.
People in underdeveloped and developing countries need to be educated about the disease and made them know about how the disease spreads and how it affects the body. Also, people have to be thought that the disease cannot be transmitted through a simple touch or a handshake and hence not to consider infected persons as some vile untouchable being but to show compassion towards them and treat them as any normal person.