History And Meaning Of HIV/AIDs (Civic Education)

Table Of Contents

1. History And Meaning Of HIV/AIDS.
2. History Of AIDS.
3. Transmissional Causes Of HIV/AIDS.
4. Physiological Agents oF HIV/AIdS Spread.
5. Attitudinal Agents Of HIV/AIDS Spread.
6. Symptoms Of HIV/AIDS
7. Preventive Of HIV/AIDS.

History And Meaning Of HIV/AIDS

Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV) is a germ of the virus family. It is an infection which causes Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (AIDS) a chronic and life-threatening conditions like other viruses, HIV needs living cells to make copies of itself. HIV spread quickly if the process of replicating itself is not brought under control. It should be noted that the virus infects only human cells and when it attacks or infects a human cell. It makes the immune system not to function properly and incapable of fighting infection.

A person infected by HIV may live for about five to ten years without knowing that he has it. AIDS occurs when HIV infection destroys the immune system’s cells there by reducing the body’s ability to fight bacteria, fungal and viral infections. As the immune system continues to deteriorate, the patient become vulnerable to disease or sickness such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, meningitis, certain types of cancers and intestinal infections he would ordinarily resist.

AIDS is a serious condition in which the body’s ability to fight illness is destroyed AIDS is deadly disease that has no cure now, but there are Anti-retroviral drugs that can help the victim stay healthy and live longer. AIDS is acquired, because it is neither hereditary nor transmitted through genes. The disease is a syndrome. Because someone with AIDS experiences different kinds of disease and infections.

HIV retrovirus organism are of two forms namely HIV-1 and HIV-2. They destroy the immune systems and T4 Cell Helper. It penetrates the T4 cells, swells it up and allows it to burst and so continually destroys all the immune cells and it defense mechanisms. The increase of the HIV virus in the blood reduces the T4 lymphocyte cells, Monocytes and the cells of the spinal cord and brain. This render the immune system defenses or weakens it.

Several harmful organism gain entrance into the body freely because the immune system has become weak and inactive. Thus causes the full blown AIDS. What thus means in that the HIV lives in the body fluids such as the blood, semen and vaginal secretions. It destroys the white blood cells and is transmitted through the blood or bodily secretions. A person does not contact AIDS but only HIV.

History Of AIDS

AIDS first appeared in the 1970s, but was recognized in the United States Of America in 1981 and detected in Africa( in Uganda) in 1982.

HIV1 was discovered in 1983 while HIV2 was discovered In March 1986. The HIV2 is prevalent in Nigeria and west Africa and has a longer period of incubation before the full blown AIDS condition than the HIV1. The virus enters on uninfected person through a break or cut in the skin or pink lining tissue or mucus. Anyone tested and found to have tis virus is said to be HIV/AIDS positive while an individual without this virus is said to be HIV/AIDS negative.

Transmissional Causes Of HIV/AIDS

Pathogenically, HIV/AIDs is caused by retroviral HIV viruses finding their way into the body fluidal, serial and hormonal system where they attack the leucocytes and break down the body’s defense system, giving room for AIDS condition. Thus, AIDS is the last stage of HIV development. However, socially speaking HIV/AIDS can be caused through certain modes of transmission. This can be categorized into two viz physiological Agents of HIV/AIDS spread and Attitudinal Agents of HIV/AIDS spread.

Physiological Agents Of HIV/AIDS Spread

These Include:

a. Saliva.

b. Tears( Incrymal gland)

c. Break milk ( Mammary gland)

d. Urine ( Renal discharge)

e. Blood (by trans-fusion or a brasum)

f. Genital track secretion ( genad gland)

g. Placenta ( Maternal Foetal contact)

h. The contamination, Viral infection and in ordinate handling of the affected physiological patterns may lead to the spread of HIV/AIDS diseases.

Attitudinal Agents Of HIV/AIDS Spread

The spread of HIV/AIDS can only be worsened through our carelessness permissive and promiscuous lifestyles. Lack of self-control, ignorance and immorality has remained the major factors in the spread of HIV/AIDS sickness.

The following may be considered:

a. Sexual Misconduct: Engaging in indiscriminate sexual intercourse. Some people are HIV healthy carriers. Their system can sustain the HIS virus as long as twelve years or more without a signs of ill health, such peopled could ignorantly spread the diseases through multiple-partner-sexual intercourse, included in this group Lesbians, Homosexuals, sodomists, those who practise brutality, cunnilingus and anal penetrations.a.

b. When Blood Is Transfused Without Necessary And Proper Screening:

The Nigerian National Blood Policy of May 2006 States as follows; ” All donor blood for transfusion Shall be screened for specified transfusion transmissible infection, including Human Immune deficiency virus (HIV), Hepatitis B and C and Syphilis. It shall be an offence to issue or transfuse unscreened blood or blood components.

c. Having Unprotected Sex: This means having sex without condom.

d. Commercialized Prostitution: The people in this industry are called sex works.

e. Handling Body Fluids And Blood Without hand-gloves

f. Not flushing and cleaning water closet properly before use as some people do pass both fluids and blood during stooping. However the virus is fragile and cannot live outside the body for a long time.

g. Sharing sharp and pointed objects that are not regularly sterilized such instruments as clippers, scissors, nail filers, blades and comb need to be sterilized with methylated spirit, hydrogen peroxide, bleach, kerosene etc the virus is inactivated by disinfectants.

h. Ill-treated or untreated STLS could dispose the body to the HIV infections.

i. The sharing of Skin-Piercing Tool. Tool such as razors, syringes needles, knives can cause the spread of HIV. Medical instruments of this nature are disposed of once they have been used.

j. Hot kisses could transmit the HIV virus when a carrier or a positively tested individual with blisters inside the mouth exchanges saliva with an infected kiss mate or using the tongue to leak up one’s tears or carouse private and sensitive parts of an infected patient. Thus ethic is called unwholesome romance.

Symptoms Of HIV/AIDS

There are signs or symptoms that accompany HIV/AIDS. These signs or symptoms among other include:

a. Persistence fever or attacks of unending fever: This could occur along side with, malaria, stomach pain, headache, catarrh, chest pain, cough etc.

b. Pneumonia: The victim has breathing difficulty as a result of pneumonia.

c. Prolong Diarrhea: lasting for more than one month.

d. Tuberculosis or dry cough can be observed in the sufferer.

e. Aching muscles and Joints.

F. Loss of weight or weight depreciation.

g. Recurring Skin Infection: Noticeable rashes on the skin particularly areas where sexual pleasure can be felt or caused.

h. Frequent sweating at night.

i. Loss of hair, wearing a way of the body tissues and pining away of the skin.

j. Dizziness and fainting as a result of fatigue powerlessness and restlessness.

k. Loss Of Appetite: There is complete loss of appetite as a result of the in activity of the vital body organs.

Effects Of HIV/AIDS

The under listed are the negative effects of HIV/AIDS:

a. Loss of productivity or man power.

b. Stigmatization or social discrimination.

c. High cost of treatment. The scarce resources could be used to manage the sufferer at the expense of others.

d. Poor Parental Care: The parents fail to carry out the responsibility in the right ways as result of HIV/AIDS sufferer in the family

e, it could lead to poverty.

f. It is a terminal disease, so death is the end of this race in HIV/AIDS.

Preventive Measures For HIV/AIDS

The Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV) is preventable and not yet curable. It does not just infect people as it is not an air borne disease. It can be avoided through a cautious or careful lifestyle. High spiritual, moral and ethical practices are its safety valves, whereas waywardness, insensitivity and immorality are sure ways of catching HIV/AIDS.

There are, therefore, many ways to avoid or prevent HIV/AIDS pandemic These are:

1.The use of or Practice of ABC method:
This acronym A B C stands for.

a. A= Abstinence, which means staying away from or avoiding premarital or extra marital or indiscriminate sexual intercourse. Sexual permissiveness contributes up to 75% of the causes of HIV/AIDS disease.

b. B= Being Faithful to one’s partner: This refers specifically to married couples or spouses.

c. C= Counting on condom:
When one cannot abstain from sex or practice self-control, one is expected to resort to the use of condom. Condom is of two kind’s viz-male condom and female condom. Each must be used with maximum care as a puncture or leak or aperture found on it could be unsafe and regrettable.

2. Avoidance of indiscriminate Sexual Intercourses: This means that one should not have multiple sexual partners, but should keep to his wife or to her husband.

3. Individuals and Medical personnel should insist on using fresh medical instruments like syringes and needle during infusion or injection administration. The sharing of such personal medical effects, if not properly and professionally checked, could caus HIV infection.

4. Thorough screening and certification of blood before transfusion: Blood test result must be sero-negative before transfusion can occur even after having met other hematological conditions or prerequisites.

5. Thorough screening of mothers before and during pregnancy: This is to enable medical experts devise means of preventing the foetus from being infected in the womb before they are born.

6. People are advised to make use of personal blades and clippers in hair and barbing salons and dispose of the blade after use. Clippers are to be sterilized with methylated spirit and disinfectants before using them on others.

7. One should be mindful when interacting with someone with an open wound. If you sustain an open wound, protect it from direct blood contact with one is HIV/AIDS sero-positive.

8. Resist indulging in sexual perversion such as “hot” kiss cunnilingus, oral and anal sex, lesbianism. Bestiality and homosexuality.

9. Attending HIV/AIDS Workshop. Symposia, seminars and counseling will help in refreshing our minds on best practices. We are also expected to read books written by professionals as guide.

Greater awareness, better education and in depth knowledge about the existence, spread and prevention of the disease are the best ways to tackle the pandemic disease. Ignorance is a sure way of catching and spreading it.

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