Hivpoint’s new campaign Prevent – Test – Treat – Enjoy introduces three ways to take care of your sexual health and enjoy sex more. Campaign is aimed for gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, and it will last until the end of the year 2022.
Condom gives protection against HIV and other STIs
“Use a condom!” is an old and familiar message and has been heard over and over but it is still relevant. Even if we have PrEP, condom is still the most efficient way of preventing STIs. It is important to know that there is a lot of options in condoms – different sizes, shapes, materials etc. In anal intercourse water or silicone-based lubricant should always be used with a condom. It prevents the condom from breaking and makes sex more enjoyable.
Read more about the use of condoms here >>
PrEP is an effective preventive medicine that needs to be taken before being exposed to HIV. PrEP can be taken daily or on-demand. Prep treatment should always be under doctor’s supervision including HIV and other STI testing in every three months. PrEP prevents only HIV, it does not give protection against other STIs.
Testing is a very important part of preventing HIV and other STIs. All STI’s including HIV can occur without symptoms. So only way to find out if you have been infected is to get tested. If you have had oral sex (without a condom) urine sample is not necessarily enough, you need a throat swab (when licking or sucking someone´s genitals) to be sure that you have not been infected with chlamydia or gonorrhea. In case you have had anal sex as a bottom, you should mention it when taking STI tests so that samples are taken also from the anus.
Read more about other STIs here >>
If you have been infected with an STI, it is important to get treatment. Most of the STIs are curable and all are treatable.
People with HIV should take medicine to treat HIV as soon as possible after getting diagnosed. HIV medicine is called antiretroviral therapy or ART. If taken as prescribed, HIV medicine reduces the amount of HIV in the body (viral load) to a very low level, which keeps the immune system working and prevents illness. This is called viral suppression — defined as having less than 200 copies of HIV per milliliter of blood. HIV medicine usually makes the viral load so low that a normal blood test cannot detect it. This is called an undetectable viral load. Being undetectable does not mean HIV is cured. There is still HIV in the body, although it has been reduced to very small amounts.
HIV treatment is lifelong. Getting and keeping an undetectable viral load is the best thing people with HIV can do to stay healthy. Another benefit is that it makes HIV transmission through sex impossible. People on effective HIV treatment cannot pass on the virus!
For vast majority of the people the reason to have sex is to get pleasure and enjoyment. There are no simple answers to a question: how to enjoy sex? But we believe that the more people have knowledge and tools to take care of their sexual health, the less they have stress which leads to more pleasure and enjoyment.
Read more about the Prevent – Test – Treat – Enjoy campaign here >>