WHAT IF I TEST POSITIVE FOR HIV?
- If you test positive for HIV, the sooner you take steps to protect your health, the better. Early medical treatment and a healthy lifestyle can help you stay well. Prompt medical care may delay the onset of AIDS and prevent some life-threatening conditions. There are a number of important steps you can take immediately to protect your health. See a licensed health care provider, even if you do not feel sick. Try to find a health care provider who has experience treating HIV. There are now many medications to treat HIV infection and help you maintain your health.
- It is never too early to start thinking about treatment possibilities. Consider taking a TB (tuberculosis) test. You may be affected by TB and not know it. Undetected TB can cause serious illness, but it can be successfully treated if caught early. Smoking cigarettes, drinking too much alcohol, or using illegal drugs (such as methamphetamines) can weaken your immune system. There are programs available that can help you stop or reduce your use of these substances. Also be sure to get screened for other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Undetected STDs can cause serious health problems. It is also important to practice healthy sexual behaviors so you can avoid getting STDs.