How is HIV Transmitted?
HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, can be transmitted four ways:
- During sex with someone who has HIV
- Blood to blood contact, such as sharing needles or syringes
- From mother to child during breast feeding
- From mother to child during pregnancy or birth
YOU CANNOT GET HIV FROM EVERYDAY ACTIVITIES
HIV is a fragile virus, and does not live very long outside the body.
HIV IS NOT TRANSMITTED BY:
- Shaking hands
- Toilet seats
- Drinking fountains
- Sharing dishes
- Sharing drinking glasses
- Sharing utensils
- Mosquito bites
Am I at risk for HIV?
Anyone can get HIV, but you may be at increased risk for infection if you have:
- injected drugs or steroids, during which equipment (such as needles, syringes, cotton, water) and blood were shared with others
- had unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex (that is, sex without using condoms) with men who have sex with men, multiple partners, or anonymous partners
- exchanged sex for drugs or money
- been given a diagnosis of, or been treated for, hepatitis, tuberculosis (TB), or a sexually transmitted disease (STD) such as syphilis
- received a blood transfusion or clotting factor during 1978-1985
- had unprotected sex with someone who has any of the risk factors listed above
What can I do to stay safe?
Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center's "Safer Sex: A Guide for Us" is an informational booklet available in PDF format. If you don't have Acrobat Reader, you can download it here for free. There is no restriction on printing or emailing these materials. Please share them with your friends and family.
PLEASE NOTE, THIS BROCHURE CONTAINS INFORMATION AND IMAGES RELATED TO SAFER SEX PRACTICES. SOME VIEWERS MAY FIND THIS MATERIAL OBJECTIONABLE.
"Safer Sex: A Guide for Us" is available in four languages:
Should I Get Tested?
If you answer yes to any of these questions, you should probably get tested for HIV:
- Have you injected drugs or steroids or shared equipment (such as needles, syringes, works) with others?
- Have you had unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex with men who have sex with men, multiple partners, or anonymous partners?
- Have you exchanged sex for drugs or money?
- Have you been diagnosed with or treated for hepatitis, tuberculosis (TB), or a sexually transmitted disease (STD), like syphilis?
- Have you had unprotected sex with someone who could answer yes to any of the above questions?
Are you living with HIV?
Please check out our resources page, with links to find resources in your area.