If you correctly take your medicines every day, you can lead a normal life and live just as long as someone without HIV.
Take your medicines the way the HIV counsellor tells you to. Talk to your HIV counsellor about the best medicines for you.
If you are not treated, you can infect other people through unprotected sex or your blood. You can infect your baby during pregnancy or delivery or when breast-feeding. With the right treatment, women with HIV can still have healthy children.
Take care of your health:
- Eat healthily. This improves your resistance to diseases.
- Take exercise.
- Keep cigarettes, drugs and alcohol to a minimum.
- Get enough rest at night. It will reduce stress.
You cannot infect someone through social contact. You do not have to be afraid for infection if, for example, you share a glass or plate with someone or if you touch someone or give a kiss or a French kiss.
No longer any risk of infection
If you take your medicines correctly every day, the amount of HIV in your blood (viral load) will reduce. After a few months, it can often no longer be traced, though the virus is still in your body. Then you will no longer be able to infect someone else with HIV.
Under certain conditions, it is possible for you to have sex without a condom with your steady partner (steady relationship) who does not have HIV:
- If you take your HIV medicines correctly every day, and
- If, for at least 6 months, your viral load can no longer be detected, and
- If your viral load was checked less than 6 months ago;
- If you and your partner have no other STI and the mucous membrane of your mouth, anus, penis or vagina is not damaged.
Telling someone you have HIV
Living with HIV is not always easy. It might help if you talk with someone about HIV. You are not obliged to tell people you have HIV.