In 2022, $20 million was awarded by the Department of Health and Human Services to help HIV prevention. Even though raising awareness about HIV testing is essential, other methods can reduce the risk of infection. For example, PrEP is a method of taking a pill daily to prevent HIV.
This HIV treatment is effective as a preventative measure and can help people live healthy lives.
So, what is involved in PrEP, and is it worth it?
What is PrEP?
PrEP stands for pre-exposure prophylaxis. Currently, there are two FDA-approved PrEP treatments that, when taken correctly, can limit the growth of HIV infections.
Similar to other medications, PrEP prevents you from contracting HIV. When you start this treatment, it’s required that you get regular testing to ensure you don’t have a positive result.
This is important because PrEP is a preventative medicine that doesn’t cure the infection. So, when you visit an HIV specialist, it’s good to know what to expect and when to schedule future testing.
It’s normal to feel apprehensive about starting a new medication, so contacting an HIV clinic for extra resources and advice will help you find the right solution for your lifestyle. In these communities, you can meet many people who have started PrEP and discuss their side effects.
Plus, in many clinics, counseling options are great for learning other prevention methods. It can be helpful to talk with a professional counselor and weigh up your PrEP options before making a final decision.
Who Can Benefit From PrEP
Depending on your relationship status, people who can benefit from PrEP include those who have had anal or vaginal sex in the last months, but in particular, partners who have had an HIV infection or had intercourse without a condom.
A sexually transmitted disease is also a high-risk factor.
People who use needles or share syringes should also consider PrEP. If you’re uncertain about qualifying for PrEP, book an appointment with an HIV doctor, and they will look at your individual situation.
This is a great way to ask more questions and determine if the treatment plan can integrate into your daily life.
Are There Side Effects?
PrEP treatments can have side effects, but your HIV doctor can advise you based on your medical history. Blood tests will assess your health and ensure you’re ready for the treatment.
During the treatment plan, your doctor will also take regular blood tests to double-check that it’s not interfering with your immune system.
Here are the most common side effects:
- Digestive issues
As long as you go to a welcoming and friendly HIV clinic, you’ll have all the support you need to go through PrEP.
Get the Support You Need at an HIV Clinic
PrEP can feel overwhelming when you read information online and don’t know where to start. So, this article is an excellent first step to learning more about PrEP and if it’s the right choice for you.
Our website has more resources to help you educate yourself on this treatment and its benefits. Check out our website here and sign up with the clinic for more advice.
We look forward to hearing from you and welcoming you to our new PrEP clinic.