‘I Am HIV POSITIVE’
This short phrase written above is the bitter realization HIV infected persons have to accept.
These words have disrupted lives and ended the joy of many, but I am not here to bore you with the details or remind you of the shock and pain you felt when you came to this realization.
This post is for three categories of people;
- Those living with the HIV virus.
- Those living without the HIV virus.
- And those who are unsure of their status.
The deadly virus – Human Immunodeficiency Virus, has been around for decades. It was first discovered in Nigeria in 1985, which is two years after it was discovered in San Francesco by a group of scientists led by Dr. Luc Montagnier from one Ken Horne as the first carrier of the incurable disease.
For an incurable disease which has claimed the lives of millions all over the world and with 150,000 deaths of AIDs-related illness just last year in Nigeria; it has seen Nigeria as the country with the second largest HIV epidemic.
After about 33 years and millions of recorded deaths caused by AIDs. Many are now aware of their status but most still cower at the thought of knowing their status for many reasons e.g multiple sexual partners, unfaithful partner, use of sharp and unsterilized objects, use of unscreened blood, amongst others.
HIV is a virus that attacks the human’s immune system, which is the natural defence against illnesses, but when left unchecked, the virus gradually attacks the T-helper cells, known as CD4 cells for about 10 to 15 years, so imagine the extent of damage it would have incured which leads to the appearance of the defining symptoms – which is AIDs.
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome is a compilation of symptoms and illnesses, which is also known as the late HIV stage.
Over the years, the awareness and news about the incurable disease has dwindled, which has in effect reduced the cautiousness of most Nigerians.
It is important to know your HIV status, this helps you lead a better life.
Proper use of the Anti-retroviral medications aimed at suppressing the load of the infectious cells and also a healthy lifestyle helps you live above the virus.
We will be sharing with you, personal stories of happy Africans living with the virus, spreading the news on how to live well, and how to stay HIV-free.
Read on how Mpho, a sexually active gay man came to this realization of being HIV positive.
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