Myths persist about how HIV is transmitted. This section provides the facts about HIV risk from different types of sex, injection drug use, and other activities. You can get or transmit HIV only through specific activities. Most commonly, people get or transmit HIV through sexual behaviors and needle or syringe use. Only certain body fluids—blood, semen cum , pre-seminal fluid pre-cum , rectal fluids, vaginal fluids, and breast milk—from a person who has HIV can transmit HIV. These fluids must come in contact with a mucous membrane or damaged tissue or be directly injected into the bloodstream from a needle or syringe for transmission to occur.
Facts & Myths
Can people transmit HIV through kissing? Busting HIV myths
HIV infects humans and causes damage by taking over cells in the immune system—the part of the body that usually works to fight off germs, bacteria and disease. When that happens, the body may not be able to fight off certain types of illnesses or cancers. If the infection is not detected and treated, the immune system gradually weakens and AIDS develops. HIV and AIDS are terms that are often used together, and sometimes are used interchangeably, though they are not the same thing. If you are worried about a recent potential exposure, go to the emergency room and ask for PEP post-exposure prophylaxis as soon as you can. Effectiveness is increased the earlier PEP is begun after the exposure.
Why you cannot get HIV from kissing
Let's start by stating the obvious: kissing is considered among the most ineffective means of transmitting HIV from one person to another, with risk considered anywhere from negligible to non-existent. To date, there has really been only one, rather dubious case where an HIV-negative woman was said to have infected by her HIV-positive male partner, who reportedly deep kissed her on a regular basis over a two-year period, often with bleeding gums. What makes the case—which was reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC back in —highly suspect is the fact that the couple also reported condom breakage during the same period, reported that they had used a nonoxynol-9 lubricant now known to increase HIV risk in women , and reported having vaginal sex and oral sex without condoms during the span of their relationship. While the CDC reported that they suspected HIV transmission was "possibly associated with exposure of mucous membranes to contaminated blood," they could not exclude vaginal sex, oral sex, or any other possibility.
Clue is on a mission to help you understand your body, periods, ovulation, and so much more. Start tracking today. HIV progressively destroys the cellular part of the immune system—particularly types of white blood cells called CD4 cells—which, over time, makes the person become immunodeficient 1.