HIV COUNSELING: A MUCH-NEEDED PRACTICE FOR MODERN SEXOLOGISTS FOR AWARENESS
HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It’s a virus that breaks down certain cells in your immune system. When HIV Damages your Immune system, it gets easier to get really sick and even dies from infections that your body could normally fight off.
There are about 1.1 million people living in this world who are affected by HIV. Mostly HIV does not have any symptoms for many years, and they feel fine, so they are mostly unaware that they have it.
One person has HIV; the virus stays in the body for life. There is no cure for HIV, but medicines can help a person in staying healthy. HIV medicines are known to lower or almost stop the virus from spreading to other people.
In the case of HIV, it is very necessary that the patient should have counselling sessions so that he/she could be better aware of their condition, and so they can spread awareness to their loved ones and protect their loved ones.
Sidri International Skin Hair and Sexology Clinic provide counselling on HIV, which helps the patients to carry on with their normal lifestyle even after being infected. Dr. Manu Rajput and Dr. Kanu Rajput have dealt with infected patients with care and caution by understanding their problems and guiding them towards a healthier life.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HIV AND AIDS
HIV is basically the virus that causes AIDS. AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. HIV and AIDS are not the same thing. People with HIV do not have AIDS. HIV is the virus that is passed from person to person. Over time, HIV destroys the important cell in the immune system that helps you by protecting you from infections.
AIDS can be said to have contact when very few CD4 cells are left in your body. AIDS is the most serious stage of HIV, leading to death over time. Without treatment, it takes one about 10 years for someone with HIV to contract AIDS. Treatment slows down the causes and can help people stay healthy for decades.
WHAT CAUSES HIV?
HIV infection is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus. HIV can be contacted for a number of reasons:
- Contact with infected blood can lead to HIV
- Contact with Vaginal fluids, Semen can also lead to contracting HIV
- Most common cases of HIV arise from having unprotected sex with someone who is an HIV positive
- Sharing drug needles with someone who is infected can also cause HIV.
- HIV can generally spread by having vaginal or anal sex.
- Sharing needles or syringes for shooting drugs, piercing, tattoos etc.
- HIV can also be passed to babies during pregnancy, i.e. at birth or breastfeeding.
HIV does not spread by casual contact like kissing or sharing drinking glasses with an infected person, as it does not survive well outside the body.
Awareness is very essential in the case of HIV, and it can only be created when the patient of the infected person is himself having proper knowledge of his condition. Sidri International Skin Hair and Sexology clinic are well known for counselling HIV patients not only in the Delhi region but also in other areas like Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Noida, Gurgaon etc. patients feel comfortable sharing their problems with the expert sexologist, Dr. Manu Rajput and Dr. Kanu Rajput, who is known to have made patients feel better and to fight odds of the society.
SYMPTOMS OF HIV
There are basically three stages of HIV wherein different kinds of symptoms can be felt by the person who is infected with the disease.
After one to four weeks of getting HIV, some people experience symptoms that feel like the flu. These may not last for a week or two. Generally, experiencing these symptoms alone is not a very reliable source of diagnosing HIV.
One should always visit their doctor if they have a doubt that they have contracted HIV, even if they do not have any such visible symptoms, and get tested.
Symptoms at this stage include:
- Body rash
- Sore throat
- Swollen glands
- Upset stomach
- Pain in the joints
- Muscle pain
These symptoms are generally the result of the body’s defence mechanisms’ reaction to the HIV virus. The body generally provides HIV antibodies to fight against the virus.
STAGE 2: THE ASYMPTOMATIC STAGE
Once the person crosses the acute primary infection stage, they can start feeling better. Other symptoms may not even show up for almost 10 to 15 years. This does not mean that the virus stops replicating itself or building new cells. HIV still passes during this stage. If there is no medication done, HIV can cause severe damage.
STAGE 3: SYMPTOMATIC HIV INFECTION
As the person comes into the third stage of HIV, his/her immune system gets severely damaged, they become more prone towards getting serious infections from bacterial or fungal diseases, which they would have been otherwise able to fight off. These are opportunistic infections.
At this stage, the symptoms can be:
- Weight loss
- Chronic diarrhoea
- Night sweats
- Persistent cough
- Mouth and skin-related issues
- Regular infections
- Serious illness or disease.
PREVENTIONS IN THE CASE OF HIV
HIV is known to spread by people who do not know that they have it. It is very important for an infected person to protect himself or herself and also to protect others. The following measures can be used:
- Practising safer sex by using a condom every time one has sex until one becomes sure that both partners are free from HIV.
- Avoid having multiple partners for sex.
- Talk to your partner and know if they have a risk of having HIV
- Don’t consume alcohol or drugs before having sex, as it may lower your guard.
- Never share personal items like toothbrushes or razors
- Strictly avoid the use of needles or syringes with anyone.
All these preventive measures are important to avoid the spreading of the HIV virus, but it is also important for the infected person to take due care of their health and to keep up with their medications too.
HIV AIDS COUNSELING
Counselling in HIV and AIDS has become a centric element in which psychological issues are recognized as integral to patient management. HIV Counseling has two general aims:
- Prevention of transmission
- To support the people who are directly or indirectly affected by HIV.
It is very necessary that HIV counselling should have this two-fold approach, as the transmission of HIV can only be stopped if there is a change in the behaviour of the patients. One-to-one prevention counselling has a particular contribution in that it enables frank discussion of the patient’s life- such discussions may be hampered in other settings by other patients’ concern for confidentiality or anxiety about a judgmental response. Also, when the patients know that they are HIV positive, they may suffer great psychological stress and fear of rejection, social stigma, disease progression and uncertainties associated with the future management of HIV.
In this type of situation, there is an immense need that the patient should be dealt with with utmost care, and his trust should be kept as a primary concern. When the cases of HIV are concerned, counselling helps a lot in boosting the morale of the patients and also helps in lifting the patient’s spirit and behaviour.
There are basically two types of discussions:
- Pre-test Discussion
- Post-test Discussion
This includes discussions relating to the Window period of HIV and all the other matters relating to the disease and its effects and how the medications can help in mitigating the loss or damage.
They shall be done in person, wherein the person shall be taught and guided on how to deal with the disease psychologically as many infected patients have felt that they need counselling from time to time as they face a lot of social taboos and myths. Patients are given time to adjust to their diagnosis at this point in time. The patients are taught and guided step by step after the diagnosis to make them feel comfortable and help them deal with the disease psychologically.
HOW COUNSELING HELPS:
Counselling helps in the following ways-
- It helps the patients to carry on a normal lifestyle
- Counselling boosts the morale of the patients, which in turn helps them to feel better
- With the help of counselling, the patients have better access to information regarding their present medication
- Counselling helps patients in building awareness
- Counselling is necessary so that patients can carelessly avoid disease transmission.
Counselling can literally change the mindset of the person infected with HIV. HIV counselling from Sidri International Skin Hair and Sexology Clinic can help the patient in generating hope and motivation towards the future as expert Sexologists Dr. Manu Rajput and Dr. Kanu Rajput develop interpersonal relations with their patients, which makes their patients feel better about their diseases.
At Sidri International Skin Hair and Sexology Clinic, patients are taken care of with due diligence and with the motive of uplifting their spirits towards their diseases and guiding them to lead a healthy life ahead.
SO BOOK YOUR COUNSELLING SESSION NOW TO HELP YOUR NEAR AND DEAR ONES FIGHT HIV AND SPREAD AWARENESS!