Have you tested positive?
AIDS Healthcare foundation offers advice on what to do after testing HIV positive
Knowing that you’re HIV positive gives you power that not knowing doesn’t: the power to seek treatment, to handle the health issues you can control and to protect the people you care about.
The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) offers advice on what to do if you have just learned you are HIV positive. It’s natural to feel scared, confused and unsure what to do next. However, after testing HIV positive, you’ll definitely have some changes in your life, habits and relationships. Here are the most important steps on your way to living well with HIV:
- Seek treatment
AHF has offered quality services for people with HIV since 1987. Find out more about becoming an AHF patient at treatment sites in Lusaka, Zambia Tel/Fax: +260 211 846 365.
- Protect your health – both physical and emotional
Keep your body strong by eating right, exercising and getting enough rest. Avoid alcohol, smoking and recreational drugs, and if you’re on medication, remember to take them.
After receiving your diagnosis, you may feel depressed or want to isolate yourself from family and friends. Try to maintain your connections, and talk to your doctor if you can’t eat, sleep or concentrate. You’ll feel better with a strong support system in place.
- Get informed
The more you know about HIV and the medication that are used to control it, the better you’ll be able to make decisions about your treatment. Your doctor and HIV/AIDS organizations can be great sources of information.
- Tell others
It’s hard to know who to tell that you’re positive. Telling your loved ones can be a relief and give you support, but not everyone responds well to this news. Let your instincts help you decide who to trust with this information, and when. Regardless of who else you choose to share your status with, you should tell:
- Anyone you’ve had sex or shared needles with
- Anyone you plan to have sex with
- Your doctor and dentist
By telling your sex partners, past and present, you help protect them. By telling your doctor and dentist, you help them give you the right kind of care.
- What to Do if Your Partner Is HIV Positive
If your partner is HIV positive, there are a few basic safety precautions you need to take. Most important is to practice safer sex. Even if both of you are positive, you could expose each other to different strains of the virus and make medication less effective. Keep your own individual razors and toothbrushes, and don’t share them.
ABOUT THE AIDS HEALTHCARE FOUNDATION (AHF)
AIDS Healthcare Foundation is the largest non-profit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider in the world, currently providing medical care and/or services to more than 400 000 individuals in 36 countries worldwide.
For more daily updates and information about AHF visit www.facebook.com/aidshealth.org