Microsoft founder Bill Gates recently talked about two separate meetings he’d had with President Donald Trump during which the president asked Mr. Gates what the difference was between HPV and HIV. This is something that someone like President Trump—a 72-year-old man (who also happens to be a husband and parent)—should know. In fact, this is something we all should know.
HPV and HIV are both STDs. Both have H in their names, and both have V in their names because they’re both viruses. But that’s where the similarities end.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a super common STD. It can be passed from skin-to-skin contact or oral, vaginal or anal sex with someone who has the virus. A person might not even know they have HPV; most HPV infections clear up on their own with no adverse effects. However, in some cases, HPV can cause warts around the mouth, anus and genitals. And some strains can lead to cervical cancer in women and penile and anal cancer in men. There is a vaccine available, and while condoms and dental dams do not completely prevent HPV, they can lower chances of infection.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is less common than HPV. It can be transmitted when a mucous membrane (like the mouth, vagina or rectum) comes into contact with fluids (such as semen, vaginal fluids or blood) from someone with the virus. HIV weakens the immune system, and there is no vaccine or cure. But there are medications that reduce the amount of the virus in a person’s bodily fluids, which helps them live a longer, healthier life and reduces the chances of the virus being passed on to a partner. Without treatment, HIV can weaken the immune system and lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Condoms are very effective at preventing the sexual transmission of HIV when used correctly.
People who are engaging in sexual behaviors should get tested regularly for STDs. Girls do not need to get Pap tests, which screen for abnormal cervical cells caused by HPV, until they are 21.
You’re hopefully a lot more informed about the difference between HPV and HIV. Ideally, this is information we would all be learning in comprehensive sex education classes. But the irony is that President Trump, who isn’t clear about the difference between HPV and HIV, is heading up an administration that is threatening to cut funding for sex education. Let’s keep speaking up for better sex education, so no one ever has to wonder what the difference is between HPV and HIV.
June 27th is National HIV Testing Day, an annual occasion for learning about how and why to get tested for HIV and how to reduce our risk of getting and spreading it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that one in seven people in the U.S. with HIV don’t know they have it—and young people are the most likely to be unaware of their HIV status.
Ben Stearn, M.D., of Washington, D.C., is a doctor who specializes in HIV. He stresses the importance of getting tested: “Finding out (you are) HIV positive (can) result in early treatment, and early treatment maintains a full and healthy immune system.” Stearn says that if you discover you are HIV-positive, you should start treatment as soon as possible.
Getting tested is a way to take charge of your sexual health. As teens, we have the power to start lifelong habits to maintain good health. That’s why getting tested is a good choice for all sexually active teens. You can find a free testing center near you.
Aside from getting tested, it’s important to know the basic ways to prevent HIV. Using a condom the right way every time you have sex is crucial. People at a high risk of contracting HIV can also ask their doctors about pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). This is a medicine that reduces the chance of contracting HIV.
National HIV Testing Day reminds us to be aware of our risks and take control of our sexual health. It’s important to take steps to keep ourselves and our current and future partners healthy. Be sure to use protection correctly and don’t forget to get tested!
December 1st is World AIDS Day. This is a day to remember those around the globe who are living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or have lost their lives to complications from acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). HIV does not discriminate against sexual orientation, race or gender. Currently, there are approximately 36.7 million people worldwide living with HIV. It also doesn’t discriminate by age: a third of new HIV infections in the world are among those 15 to 24 years old, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
When AIDS was first diagnosed in United States, it was briefly called gay-related immune deficiency (GRID) by some. The U.S. government was slow to act and as a result many people died. Instead of waiting for the government to do more, a group of people in New York City created the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (or ACT UP, as it is more widely known) to advocate and lobby for those with HIV/AIDS. From this group came the Treatment Action Group (TAG), which successfully advocated for quicker development of new HIV treatments.
ACT UP is an important and inspiring example of advocacy making an impact. Today, ACT UP continues to advocate for those with HIV/AIDS around the world. In fact, this year marks their 30th anniversary! I didn’t know about ACT UP until two years ago, when I watched a documentary called How to Survive a Plague. After watching it, it became important to me to celebrate those in ACT UP for their actions and beliefs.
The fight to end the spread of HIV is still not over. Globally, one million people died from AIDS in 2016, and some still mistakenly associate HIV with a “gay lifestyle” because they do not know the range of behaviors that can transmit HIV regardless of your sexual orientation. However, with education, we can make strides in ending stigma and ignorance toward those with the virus.
This December 1st (and everyday), think about those who have lost their lives, but also think about those who have survived and those who have made great strides by advocating for a cure and treatment. There is hope that we can end AIDS.
We all have our phones on us most of the day, and we all use at least five apps a day, so why not add a few great sexual health apps?
Recently, Answer—the organization that publishes Sex, Etc.—published a report in which they asked teens to use and review apps and other web-based digital tools related to sexual health. The report looks at what is working in the world of sexual health digital tools and recommends how organizations in the field of sexual and reproductive health can do an even better job of using technology to provide us with accurate sexual health info.
Here are four apps that received all-around high praise!
Bedsider’s Birth Control Reminders
This is an app for people like me who always need a reminder to take their birth control. The cool thing about this app is that each day you get to learn a weird fact, get a beautiful quote or some new reading material, all while being reminded about your birth control of choice. Some of my favorites have been a link to a women’s literature list, the quote “There is a moon, that rests in the quiet corners of a lover’s lips” and insight into Cleopatra’s signature lipstick.
Circle of 6
I personally had all of my friends download this app. Circle of 6 allows you to keep in contact with your friends and family anytime: while you’re out and alone, feeling uncomfortable at a party or not feeling safe while on a date, for example. You can send a text to your “circle” with the press of a button, asking them to “Call and pretend you need me. I need an interruption.” You can also easily send texts like “I’m home safe” and “Come and get me. I need help getting home safely” with your location. Circle of 6 makes it that much easier to have the support and help of your family and friends when you need it most.
Eve is not your normal period tracker app; it’s actually a lot more. Just like other period trackers, there are reminders when your period should start and a log to track all of your symptoms. But it also has a bunch of articles, quizzes and an active community you can participate in. Here you can talk to other people about their periods and share advice and tips to get through your period. It might be weird to call a period tracker app “fun,” but Eve is definitely a fun app to have on your phone.
Planned Parenthood Chat/Text
While Planned Parenthood Chat/Text isn’t an app, it is a great digital tool that you can access on your phone. Go to the Planned Parenthood website and click the “Chat Now” button. Through the chat, you can have your sexual questions answered by a professional. This tool is beyond valuable and something that you should use if you ever have a question about your sexual health and need a quick answer.
I hope that these apps make it onto your phone to stay. Are there other sexual health apps or digital tools that you love? Leave a comment below.
There is stigma connected to receiving analyzed for sexually transmitted condition (STDs) that tends to steer numerous men and women, in particular teens, absent from viewing the clinic. Some of the queries jogging via a frightened person’s head may possibly array from “Will it damage?” to “How a lot will this charge me?” to “What if my mom and dad uncover out?!” These queries and fears may possibly avert teenagers from likely to the clinic when they uncover out their companion has an STD and now they probably have it, as well.
This community health worry has sparked a new apply in health care named expedited companion remedy (EPT), which lets a health care provider to treat a patient and their sexual associates devoid of owning bodily examined the patient’s companion(s). The moment a patient has analyzed optimistic for a particular STD, their health care provider is allowed to prescribe treatment method for the patient as very well as their unexamined companion. (In some states, health care vendors can supply treatment method for up to five associates!) So who pays for the treatment method? Some states deal with the prices of the treatment method, so people and their associates don’t have to fork out nearly anything, and most clinics supply decreased-price expert services.
EPT is needed by law in some states, whilst other states are ambiguous, but only in a handful is it not allowed. In states that mandate EPT, the plan has substantially decreased the selection of gonorrhea and chlamydia instances. Hopefully, it will stimulate men and women to have much more open communication in interactions about receiving analyzed and handled for STDs. Even so, despite EPT’s usefulness and privacy, it is still much more efficient for any teenager that has unprotected sexual intercourse or is aware of that their companion has an STD, to find tests and treatment method in particular person.
December 1st is Globe AIDS Day. This is a time when we can replicate on what we now know about HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and AIDS (obtained immune deficiency syndrome) and what this implies for avoidance and procedure.
The AIDS epidemic started in 1981 when 5 gay American men have been claimed to have lung infections triggered by weakened immune devices. Now we know that HIV is a virus that weakens the immune procedure, and when someone’s immune procedure is terribly ruined by an HIV an infection this particular person may possibly be identified with AIDS, the closing phase of an HIV an infection. HIV does not discriminate by race, faith, gender or sexual orientation. There is an overall Wikipedia webpage focused to discrediting theories declaring that HIV was triggered by a “gay lifestyle” or that the virus is aspect of a govt bioweapons program. The only clarification for such absurd theories is that at the time people have been frightened of HIV and arrived up with all kinds of concepts to reveal it. Concern and stigma retained hundreds from seeking procedure and intended that people who have been ill have been not supported.
Now, remaining identified with HIV is not a loss of life sentence. Present procedure is so innovative that the sum of HIV observed in an HIV-good person’s blood may possibly attain undetectable amounts inside of six months. However present day procedure is effective very well, people continue to are unsuccessful to get examined or request procedure for the reason that people aged stereotypes started in the 1980s are continue to so stigmatizing. But this can alter. Unfold the word and not stigma and concern. Continue to be open up-minded and learn what it implies to practice safer intercourse and be examined, taken care of and stay with an incurable STD, like HIV. By actively learning about STDs—not just the scary statistics—we can better care for ourselves and people living with HIV.
For a lot more info on Globe AIDS Day and how to stop HIV/AIDS, test outAIDS.gov.
December 1st is Earth AIDS Day. This is a time when we can mirror on what we now know about HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) and AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome) and what this indicates for avoidance and cure.
The AIDS epidemic commenced in 1981 when five homosexual American men ended up reported to have lung bacterial infections brought on by weakened immune methods. Nowadays we know that HIV is a virus that weakens the immune method, and when someone’s immune method is poorly ruined by an HIV an infection this man or woman might be identified with AIDS, the last stage of an HIV an infection. HIV does not discriminate by race, faith, gender or sexual orientation. There is an entire Wikipedia web site focused to discrediting theories professing that HIV was brought on by a “gay lifestyle” or that the virus is component of a governing administration bioweapons program. The only rationalization for these kinds of preposterous theories is that at the time people today ended up afraid of HIV and arrived up with all kinds of tips to clarify it. Panic and stigma held countless numbers from trying to find cure and meant that people today who ended up ill ended up not supported.
Nowadays, being identified with HIV is not a demise sentence. Current cure is so sophisticated that the volume of HIV observed in an HIV-positive person’s blood might get to undetectable stages inside six months. Although modern day cure performs exceptionally properly, people today nevertheless fail to get examined or seek out cure mainly because all those outdated stereotypes commenced in the eighties are nevertheless so stigmatizing. But this can alter. Spread the term and not stigma and panic. Remain open-minded and understand what it indicates to apply safer sex and be examined, taken care of and stay with an incurable STD, like HIV. By actively studying about STDs—not just the scary statistics—we can better treatment for ourselves and all those dwelling with HIV.
For a lot more details on Earth AIDS Day and how to protect against HIV/AIDS, examine outAIDS.gov.
Let’s experience it: a lot of elements come into perform before two people come to a decision to have sex. A person of these factors—the possibility of sexually transmitted disorders (STDs)— is used as a concern tactic replete with awful shots of late-stage STD indicators to discourage teenage sex.
But here’s the difficulty with that. We’ve been conditioned to believe that that STDs are “dirty,” that people who have them are negative and undesirable. And whilst it is important to know regardless of whether your partner has an STD before you have interaction in sex, it is also important not to make your partner come to feel like complete trash if he or she does have an STD. So, from the team at Sexual intercourse, Etc. to you, here’s a 5-phase guide to creating your partner snug when you have that definitely vital conversation about STD position.
It is better to be safe and sound than sorry, specifically if you had sex with your partner prior to obtaining out about his or her STD position. If you hope your partner to be straightforward and share his or her position, you really should be organized to do the exact, so get tested. You could even do this together! (Uncover a health centre close to you.)
Share your STD position and politely ask your partner if he or she has an STD.
You can begin this conversation by telling your partner that you just lately acquired tested. You can then share your final results and ask your partner about his or her position. It is important to tread carefully with this query. You never want to ask your partner if she or he is “clean” due to the fact STDs are not a thing that really should be viewed as dirty—rather, it is a (severely important) supplemental issue to take into account before obtaining sex.
If your partner has an STD, learn far more about it!
This is important specifically if this particular person is a extended-time period romantic partner investigating indicators and threats involved with the STD in query will assist advise your conclusions with your partner. For illustration, if your partner does have an STD, it is important to know how it is handled and when it will be safe and sound to have sex all over again.
Really do not tease your partner for obtaining an STD—please.
This is self-explanatory. Really do not be impolite, never be demeaning, and never make your sexual partner come to feel like trash. This has been a PSA from the team at Sexual intercourse, Etc.
If you are up for it, assist your partner!
As soon as you’ve performed your investigation, you could decide on to stand by your partner as he or she will get through treatment! Assistance goes a extended way, and you will be a better particular person for it.
Let’s face it: a ton of factors arrive into enjoy ahead of two individuals determine to have intercourse. One of these factors—the hazard of sexually transmitted ailments (STDs)— is utilised as a worry tactic replete with awful pictures of late-phase STD indicators to discourage teenage intercourse.
But here’s the issue with that. We’ve been conditioned to think that STDs are “dirty,” that individuals who have them are lousy and unwanted. And when it is crucial to know no matter whether your spouse has an STD ahead of you have interaction in intercourse, it is also crucial not to make your spouse sense like complete trash if he or she does have an STD. So, from the crew at Sexual intercourse, And so forth. to you, here’s a 5-action tutorial to generating your spouse comfortable when you have that unquestionably important dialogue about STD position.
It is improved to be safe than sorry, in particular if you had intercourse with your spouse prior to obtaining out about his or her STD position. If you hope your spouse to be trustworthy and share his or her position, you must be well prepared to do the very same, so get tested. You could even do this collectively! (Come across a well being center close to you.)
Share your STD position and politely talk to your spouse if he or she has an STD.
You can start out this dialogue by telling your spouse that you a short while ago bought tested. You can then share your final results and talk to your spouse about his or her position. It is crucial to tread carefully with this problem. You never want to talk to your spouse if she or he is “clean” due to the fact STDs aren’t anything that must be observed as dirty—rather, it is a (significantly crucial) extra issue to think about ahead of owning intercourse.
If your spouse has an STD, find out extra about it!
This is crucial in particular if this person is a extensive-term romantic spouse researching indicators and threats associated with the STD in problem will enable advise your selections with your spouse. For instance, if your spouse does have an STD, it is crucial to know how it is handled and when it will be safe to have intercourse yet again.
Don’t tease your spouse for owning an STD—please.
This is self-explanatory. Don’t be impolite, never be demeaning, and never make your sexual spouse sense like trash. This has been a PSA from the personnel at Sexual intercourse, And so forth.
If you’re up for it, enable your spouse!
As soon as you’ve carried out your investigate, you may possibly pick out to stand by your spouse as he or she receives by therapy! Support goes a extensive way, and you are going to be a improved person for it.
Letâs experience it: a good deal of components arrive into enjoy right before two persons choose to have intercourse. Just one of these factorsâthe risk of sexually transmitted conditions (STDs)â is utilized as a worry tactic replete with awful photographs of late-stage STD symptoms to discourage teenage intercourse.
But hereâs the difficulty with that. Weâve been conditioned to think that STDs are âdirty,â that persons who have them are negative and unwanted. And while itâs important to know whether or not your spouse has an STD right before you engage in intercourse, itâs also important not to make your spouse really feel like whole trash if he or she does have an STD. So, from the group at Sex, And so on. to you, hereâs a 5-phase guide to earning your spouse comfy when you have that completely vital dialogue about STD standing.
Itâs improved to be safe than sorry, particularly if you experienced intercourse with your spouse prior to acquiring out about his or her STD standing. If you anticipate your spouse to be genuine and share his or her standing, you need to be organized to do the same, so get analyzed. You could even do this with each other! (Uncover a health and fitness heart close to you.)
Share your STD standing and politely check with your spouse if he or she has an STD.
You can start out this dialogue by telling your spouse that you just lately bought analyzed. You can then share your benefits and check with your spouse about his or her standing. Itâs important to tread carefully with this problem. You donât want to check with your spouse if she or he is âcleanâ because STDs arenât anything that need to be witnessed as dirtyârather, itâs a (seriously important) more variable to take into account right before acquiring intercourse.
If your spouse has an STD, discover additional about it!
This is important particularly if this human being is a extended-expression passionate spouse researching symptoms and challenges involved with the STD in problem will aid advise your choices with your spouse. For case in point, if your spouse does have an STD, it is important to know how itâs taken care of and when it will be safe to have intercourse once more.
Donât tease your spouse for acquiring an STDâplease.
This is self-explanatory. Donât be impolite, donât be demeaning, and donât make your sexual spouse really feel like trash. This has been a PSA from the employees at Sex, And so on.
If youâre up for it, aid your spouse!
When youâve accomplished your investigation, you may choose to stand by your spouse as he or she receives as a result of cure! Guidance goes a extended way, and youâll be a improved human being for it.