Early Symptoms of HIV & AIDS

Based on just symptoms, you can’t tell if you really have HIV. You can find this out if you get tested for HIV. Once you know your status, making healthy decisions will be easier for you. Different people show different symptoms of the disease. Moreover, the symptoms also vary based on the stage of the HIV. Given below is a description of some common symptoms of this disease.

Early Stage of HIV

Typically, 9 out of 10 people with this disease show flu-like symptoms within a few weeks of infection. Some people don’t feel sick at this stage. They have acute HIV infection. Common symptoms include fatigue, mouth ulcers, swollen lymph nodes, sore throat, muscle aches, night sweats, chills, rash and fever, just to name a few. If you have these symptoms, chances are that you have HIV. For confirmation, however, we suggest that you contact a good doctor.

Clinical Latency Stage

If left untreated, the patient may move onto the next stage known as the clinical latency stage or chronic HIV infection. At this stage, the disease is active but the reproduction level is very low. The symptoms are also mild.

If you don’t take medicine to treat the disease at this stage, you may move onto the next stage within 10 years or so. In some people, the disease gets worse a lot faster. However, if you get treatment, this stage may last longer since the drugs can control the growth of the virus giving you more time.

Here, it’s important to keep in mind that you can still transmit the disease to people around you at this stage even if you show no symptoms. However, if you are on ART, you are not as likely to get the disease transmitted to others. So, you have to be careful and get the required treatment as soon as possible.

Progression to AIDS

If you don’t take meds for HIV, the virus will make your immune system a lot weaker. As a result, you will get AIDS, which is the last stage of this disease. Below are some symptoms of the disease:

  • Weight loss
  • Night seats or fever
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Inflammation of the lymph glands
  • Prolonged diarrhea
  • Pneumonia
  • Sores of the genitals, anus or mouth
  • Depression, memory loss or neurologic disorders

However, keep in mind that the symptoms listed above are not necessarily the indicators of HIV. They may also be related to other common diseases. Therefore, we suggest that you run some tests in order to find out which disease you have. The tests won’t cost you much and help you know the disease you have.

Most of the severe symptoms of the disease appear because of the opportunistic infection, which is the result of weakened immune system.

So, if you have been experiencing the symptoms listed in this article, we suggest that you get in touch with a doctor for your medical checkup. The doctor will prescribe some tests that can confirm whether you have HIV or not.

The Nature of HIV

The contagious nature of HIV places it in a different class than other chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes, and so forth. The contagious nature of HIV has a more debilitating psychosocial and psychological impact on the ill person’s mental and emotional state than non-contagious diseases and often leads to self-imposed isolation and a feeling of being totally inadequate.

HIV medications can help the body of the infected person but that person’s feelings of self-worth, self-esteem, and self-confidence suffer from a staggering blow that must be attended to just as directly as the treatment of their physical body.

Healing the mind of the HIV infected person goes a long way in healing the body of that person because the healthy mental state of the mind will produce far more antibodies to combat intrusions than a mental state that is depressed and dispirited about the condition of its physical health.

The most dangerous mindset that a person who is infected with the HIV virus can allow themselves to fall into is that of denial. Denial is so dangerous because it refuses to accept the existence of the disease which hinders the infected person from taking the necessary actions to treat the virus and also places other people in grave jeopardy.

Denial also has the side effect of confusing the brain where it will send wrong or mixed signals to the protection mechanics of the body and weakens the responsiveness of this system to both positive and negative external and internal stimuli.

A person can live a long reasonably healthy life with HIV, but that is not good enough when that person is living in a despondent mental and emotional state because of their constant awareness that a deadly plague is actively resident within them.

The powerful human nature of sexuality becomes a burden and a curse for those who are infected with any sort of sexually transmitted disease, and being infected with the HIV and Aids virus also has a good deal of shame and embarrassment that comes attached to them.

There is nothing that hinders a person infected with the HIV and Aids virus from living a productive and rewarding life if they do not wallow in the mindset of a defeatist. Being HIV positive may seem like it’s the end of your world, but it is not, it is merely one of life’s many obstacles and challenges that must be faced with a determination to overcome it.

Self-pity and denial are psychological contraband that must be removed from the mind and replaced with goods and services that are reinforcing and empowering personally and societally.

The nature of Hiv is silent and deadly. It feeds upon the cells of the body like and leech.

Hiv is: “Definition By Mayo Clinic Staff “

“Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is a chronic, potentially life-threatening condition caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). By damaging your immune system, HIV interferes with your body’s ability to fight the organisms that cause disease.

HIV is a sexually transmitted infection. It can also be spread by contact with infected blood or from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth or breast-feeding. Without medication, it may take years before HIV weakens your immune system to the point that you have AIDS.

There’s no cure for HIV/AIDS, but there are medications that can dramatically slow the progression of the disease. These drugs have reduced AIDS deaths in many developed nations. But HIV continues to decimate populations in Africa, Haiti and parts of Asia.”

The symptoms of HIV and AIDS vary, depending on the phase of infection.

Primary infection (Acute HIV):

The majority of people infected by HIV develop a flu-like illness within a month or two after the virus enters the body. This illness, known as primary or acute HIV infection, may last for a few weeks. Possible signs and symptoms include:

· Fever

· Headache

· Muscle aches and joint pain

· Rash

· Sore throat

· Swollen lymph glands, mainly on the neck

Although the symptoms of primary HIV infection may be mild enough to go unnoticed, the amount of virus in the bloodstream (viral load) is particularly high at this time. As a result, HIV infection spreads more efficiently during primary infection than during the next stage of infection.

Clinical latent infection (Chronic HIV):

In some people, persistent swelling of lymph nodes occurs during clinical latent HIV. Otherwise, there are no specific signs and symptoms. HIV remains in the body, however, and in infected white blood cells.

Clinical latent infection generally lasts around 10 years if you’re not receiving antiretroviral therapy. This phase can last for decades in people taking antiretroviral medications. But some people progress to more severe disease much sooner.

Early symptomatic HIV infection:

As the virus continues to multiply and destroy immune cells, you may develop mild infections or chronic signs and symptoms such as:

· Fever

· Fatigue

· Swollen lymph nodes – often one of the first signs of HIV infection

· Diarrhea

· Weight loss

· Oral yeast infection (thrush)

· Shingles (herpes zoster)

Progression to AIDS:

If you receive no treatment for your HIV infection, the disease typically progresses to AIDS in about 10 years. By the time AIDS develops, your immune system has been severely damaged, making you susceptible to opportunistic infections – diseases that wouldn’t usually trouble a person with a healthy immune system.

The signs and symptoms of some of these infections may include:

· Soaking night sweats

· Recurring fever

· Chronic diarrhea

· Persistent white spots or unusual lesions on your tongue or in your mouth

· Persistent, unexplained fatigue

· Weight loss

· Skin rashes or bumps

When to see a doctor:

If you think you may have been infected with HIV or are at risk of contracting the virus, see a health care provider as soon as possible.”

For more on this go to: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hiv-aids/basics/definition/con-20013732

Everyone say that there is currently no cure for the HIV and Aids virus and widely promote medicating the virus. This is great advice for the benefit of pharmaceutical companies but falls far short of the mark for those of us who are HIV positive.

The cure for the HIV and Aids virus is with those of us who are infected by forming our own independent research and development groups that are solely interested in finding and releasing the cure for HIV and Aids and not making money by only developing medications for it.

By monkeys or by man, however, HIV and Aids reared their hideous heads is a lukewarm topic compared to self-reliance, corporate action, and creative initiative that we who are HIV and Aids positive must undertake as a formidable unified body to cure ourselves of this plague and not depend on others to do it for us.

Your starting point for making your personal stand for life is by becoming a member of http://hiveaid.org. Join Now and reassert your individual and collective independence and humanity.

We must not allow HIV and Aids to be relegated to being just one of many treatable illnesses because that will be like abandoning the ship before it has hit the iceberg. We are the pioneers of our own health and destiny and will forge ahead until we are safely at anchor within the docks of the new city.

Our enemy gropes in the darkness attacking our immune system by using the corridors of our life-giving blood to assail us. There should be a way to induce our quiet enemy to feed upon itself and in so doing annihilate itself.

The cure for HIV and Aids is in the creative energies of women and men and can be developed, if it has not already been, and dispersed among HIV and Aids infected individuals free of charge. There is no such thing as being no such thing as far as human imagination is concerned. The ability to achieve is a gift that is embedded within all of us, some having more of this gift while others less, but we all have this gift if we are willing to cultivate and exploit it.

Our hands are not tied to the whims and the goodwill of others, therefore, we muster our collective forces, pool our resources, and get busy with the job at hand, taking our lives back and dislodging our silent enemy from the tables of nations.

Everything About HEPATITIS C and Its Cure

What is Hepatitis C?

Hepatitis C is a liver disease caused by Hepatitis C Virus or HCV. Nearly 3.5 million people suffer from this disease in the US alone. Nearly 70% to 80% of the acute infection cases do not display any sort of symptoms at all. This disease is termed as the silent or invisible disease because there aren’t any symptoms in a majority of cases and even if there is the symptoms are rather common.

The disease causes liver disease and in several cases the liver cirrhosis. Chronic infection can be cured in more than 90% of the cases and in some cases where there is liver cirrhosis is extreme a transplant is required.

Symptoms:

Hepatitis C is known as a silent or invisible disease because most victims don’t show any symptoms at all and if they most of its symptoms are so common that one doesn’t realize that are suffering from Hepatitis C until much later. Nearly 70% to 80% of the patients do not show any symptom at all. The symptoms are mild and flu like with fever along with the ones mentioned below:

-Jaundice: This is the most common symptom, it includes yellow eyes and skin along with dark colored urine.

-Stomach pain: as mentioned above the symptoms of this disease done stand out and symptoms include something as common as stomach pain.

-Joint and muscle pain: Muscle and join pain is another common symptom that most patients suffer.

-Itchy Skin: If you have been suffering from itchy skin for over six weeks along with any of the above mentioned skin please consult a doctor.

-Abnormalities in urine and bowel movement

-Loss of appetite: Again a very common symptom that is induced from a variety of reasons including stress. But if you suffer from loss of appetite with jaundice and the other symptoms please do get yourself checked.

-Nausea: Vomiting and squishiness, another common symptom which when combined with stomach ache can give a wrong diagnosis.

-Fatigue: Tiredness. Again another symptom which when accompanied with the above four symptoms may be assumed as an after effect of Jaundice.

Ways it can spread:

You can get this disease if you:

– Share drugs and needles

-Have unsafe sex with multiple partners who have STD and HIV infections and rough sex.

-Use used needles that is previously used by person suffering from Hepatitis C. -From a mother to her child: A pregnant mother can pass this infection to her unborn child.

-Blood transfusion: if you receive blood from a person infected with this disease.

Precautions:

What doesn’t cause Hepatitis C:

– Hugging

-Kissing

-Coughing

-Sneezing

-Sharing utensils or glasses

-Sharing food and water

-Casual contact

-Breastfeeding your baby if you are detected with Hepatitis C, but please ensure that your nipples aren’t cracked and bleeding.

What not to share:

-Anything that could possibly have your blood on it, which includes razors, toothbrushes, nail clippers etc.

-Don’t share needles or similar equipment’s with others. Also if you are doing drugs, that too injectable street drugs please opt for a treatment program.

-Do not donate blood, organs, tissue or semen.

-Anything that could possibly have your blood on it, which includes razors, toothbrushes, nail clippers etc.

Be extra careful with:

-Open wounds, blisters, cuts or sores and cover them with bandages, and do not let it come in contact with others.

-Dispose of tampons, sanitary napkins, tissues, used bandages, and anything else that might have your blood on it.

-Clean spilled blood from surfaces with a bleach.

-Thoroughly wash hands and any object that comes in contact with your blood with soap.

Sex and Hepatitis C:

Hepatitis C can spread through sexual intercourse, but it’s a rare phenomenon. In fact, according to CDC, if you are monogamous, the risk is rather low extremely rare that they don’t even recommend the use of condom. Also, Hepatitis C doesn’t spread through oral sex. But if you have multiple partners, it is advisable that you protect your partner with the use of a condom.

Cure –Harvoni®:

Hepatitis C Medications:

Hepatitis C is an infection in the liver caused by the presence of the virus called HCV or hepatitis C virus. Just as there are different blood groups, this disease is also categorized into genotypes numbered from 1 through 6. According to statistics, about 75% of the HCV affected patients have are diagnosed with the genotype 1 HCV. There are no vaccinations available in the case HCV and can only be prevented from cautious activities when near already affected patients. It can be prevented by avoiding contact with infected fluids, or sharing needles as the disease can spread through physical contact. There are many drugs that are prescribed by specialists who treat for HCV. One among those is harvoni® which is a suitable drug for HCV genotypes 1, 4, 5 and 6. HARVONI® is a combination of two antiviral medications named ledipasvir and sofosbuvir. These prevent the multiplication of the Hepatitis C virus within the body. Before the physician is prescribing the medicine to HCV affected person, he/she will consider several factors like the treatment history in case he has already been treated for this disease, level of virus within the body, allergies to any of the components in the drug and extent of damage to the liver. In case this medicine has to be combined with another drug called ribavirin, it might affect pregnancy. The drug when prescribed separately does not affect the unborn baby and does not pass on to the infants through breast milk. Also it is not researched whether this drug is safe for children below the age of 18 years. The prescribed dosage for the drug is one pill a day and the most commonly suggested treatment cycle is a period of 12 weeks and the patients is advised to take the medicine at the same time every day.

Survey Shows Rise in Depression, Suicidal Thoughts in US Teens

A nationwide survey of teenagers in the United States has revealed a rise in fear and despair among them, with one in seven admitting to the misuse of prescription drugs. Since 2007, there has been a rise in the number of teenagers reporting feelings of dejection and despair. Suicidal tendency and absenteeism in school have gone up due to the fear of bullying and violence. The trend has been noteworthy in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in high schools.

Countrywide, one out of five students reported facing bullying at school, one in 10 females and one in 28 male students reported having been subjected to forced sexual activity. Dr. Jonathan Mermin of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which conducted the Youth Risk Behavior Survey, said that the life of an adolescent can be challenging. However, a huge number of students admitting to persistent feeling of hopelessness and 17 percent contemplating suicide tell the sad state of affairs.

In 2007, 28 percent of teenagers reported to have suicidal feelings, which rose to 31 percent in 2017. Similarly, 14 percent of teens made suicide plans in 2017 as against 11 percent in 2007. The survey, conducted every two years, involved 15,000 high school students across 39 states. It asks questions pertaining to a wide range of activities and attitudes.

There were some positive observations as well. Compared to a decade ago, fewer teens reported indulging in sexual activity, consuming alcohol or taking drugs like marijuana, heroin, and cocaine. Since the question related to prescription opioid was asked for the first time, the researchers couldn’t tell if the one in seven exhibited an increase or a decline.

The executive director of the National Coalition of STD Directors and a social worker, David Harvey, said that irrespective of the absence of a comparison, these figures suggest that opioids must be contributing to the lesser explored impact on the lives of adolescents. For example, opioid use could be contributing towards the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in this age group.

Harvey pointed out that in 2007, at least 62 percent of teens reported having used condoms the last time they had an intercourse compared to 54 percent of teens in 2017. This decline along with the use of prescription drugs signals towards a teenager’s susceptibility to STDs like HIV and Syphilis. As many as 39 percent of students had sex in 2017 compared to 48 percent in 2007.

There was also a decline in the percentage of students encountering sexual dating violence from 10 percent in 2013 to 7 percent in 2017. This, along with a decline in the intake of alcohol and drugs, represented the wiser choices made by the students. The experts suggested that family support, especially the parental attention can make a lot of difference in an adolescent’s life. Further, an increased access to mental health and substance abuse resources can also make a lot of difference. Schools can contribute by offering coping skills and bystander intervention training.

Among the LGBT teens, there was increased incidence of risky behavior as their sense of physical and emotional well-being is threatened. In comparison to 2015, a higher number of gay, lesbian and bisexual teenagers reported having been raped. They also reported having missed school because of their concerns regarding their own safety.

Dealing with the double whammy

Teens are impressionable. They are at a juncture where they can fall prey to drugs easily which can have an impact on their mental health. On the contrary, they can resort to addictive substances to deal with their mental problems. Such a simultaneous occurrence of these problems is termed as co-occurring disorders or dual diagnosis, which requires immediate intervention.