Are mosquito bites a risk of infection with HIV?
HIV is not spread by mosquitoes or other biting insects. Even if the virus enters a mosquito or another sucking or biting insect, it cannot reproduce in insects. Since the insect cannot be infected with HIV, it cannot transmit HIV to the next human it feeds on or bites.
Should I be concerned about being infected with HIV while playing sport?
There is no evidence that HIV can be transmitted while playing a sport.
Can I get HIV from casual contact (shaking hands, hugging, using a toilet, drinking from the same glass as someone who is HIV-infected, or being close to an infected person who is sneezing or coughing)?
HIV is not transmitted by day-to-day contact in social settings, schools or in the workplace. You cannot be infected by shaking someone's hand, by hugging someone, by using the same toilet or drinking from the same glass as an HIV-infected person, nor by being exposed to coughing or sneezing by an infected person.
Does HIV only affect homosexuals and drug users?
No. Anyone who has unprotected sex, shares injecting equipment, or has a transfusion with contaminated blood can become infected with HIV. Infants can be infected with HIV from their mothers during pregnancy, during labour or after delivery through breastfeeding.
Ninety per cent of HIV cases are the result of sexual transmission and 60-70% of HIV cases occur among heterosexuals.
Can you tell someone has HIV just by looking at them?
You cannot tell if someone has HIV or AIDS by just looking at them. A person infected with HIV may look healthy and feel good, but they can still pass the virus to you. A blood test is the only way a person can find out if he or she is infected with HIV.
Can I have more than one sexually transmitted infection at a time?
Yes, you can have more than one sexually transmitted infection (STI) at the same time. Each infection requires its own treatment. You cannot become immune to STIs. You can catch the same infection over and over again. Many men and women do not see or feel any early symptoms when they first become infected with an STI, however, they can still infect their sexual partner.
When you are on antiretroviral therapy, can you transmit the virus to others?
Antiretroviral therapy does not prevent an infected person from passing on the virus to others. Therapy can keep viral load down to undetectable levels, but HIV is still present in the body and can be transmitted to others through sexual contact, by sharing injecting equipment, or by mothers breastfeeding their infants.
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