How it Can Be Spread
The HIV virus can be spread or transmitted by coming into contact with blood or other bodily fluids of infected individuals.
High-risk behaviors that can cause transmission of the HIV virus include:
- Unprotected sexual contact (oral, vaginal, and/or anal).
- Sharing HIV contaminated needles (drugs, steroids, piercing, tattooing).
In addition, pregnant women with the HIV virus can pass it to their child through birth or after birth through breastfeeding.
Coming in contact with blood of infected persons can place you at risk for developing HIV. Today, blood supplies used for transfusions are tested for HIV. So the risk of transmission due to contaminated blood supplies is very unlikely. Health care workers are aware and receive training on ways to prevent their exposure to other person’s blood.
Myths about HIV/AIDS Transmission
HIV cannot be transmitted through: hugs, sneezes, coughs, mosquitoes or other insect bites, towels, toilet seats or doorknobs.
You cannot tell if a person has HIV or AIDS just by looking at them. Only a health care provider through testing can determine if a person has this disease.