HIV/ AIDS: The Silent Epidemic

For anyone who is sexually active or in their child-bearing years, the threat of getting HIV or AIDS is a scary thought. Back in the days, only a small fraction of the population gets infected but nowadays both heterosexual and homosexual relationships are at risk. Our modern lifestyle of casual hook-ups and one-night stands are contributing factors to this rising phenomenon. Even the use of illicit drugs like heroin is a culprit why people get it even though they practice safe sex.

HIV is the acronym for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. When an individual’s immune system severely weakens and is characterized by a CD4 count that is below 200, a person is then diagnosed with AIDS or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. It is known as the last stage of an HIV infection or an advanced HIV infection. This viral infection is unlike common viral infections like the common cold which is self-limiting. HIV is a lifelong infection leaving an individual HIV positive for life. The virus attacks the body’s immune system and destroys WBCs or white blood cells, so the body is unable to protect itself from invading pathogens or illness.

The population of people who are living with HIV and