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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Emergencies and Crises » AIDS Risk?

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Author Topic: AIDS Risk?
billyguy
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Hi, this might sound stupid, but I want to know a little about this.

If in fact I did studied a lot about reproduction and now I think I'm better at my pregnancy-paranoia, today it happened something that has been bothering me through the day.

At 6:45AM or something, at my way to university in my car, I gave some coins to a homeless guy... which obviously was all dirty and stuff... and well... he touched my hand. I think it was dry... I saw my hands and they weren't wet at all... and I sort of wiped them in my pants still. And well, about 10 minutes later I had breakfast, a sandwich which I ate with a napkin but I think I touched it with my hand. And I sort of have a little ball inside my mouth (you know, the regular ones, the ones that bothers you and they go away), and well, it isnt bleeding or anything, but Im scared because I don't know if he had masturbated or had anything in his hand that might have gave me the virus.

I mean, I don't know if he had AIDS, but he is a poor guy with no place to live or anything, and he can't have any good sanitary conditions. And I cant know if he masturbated or something like that.

And I've heard that the virus can be transmited dont only sexually, but if you had a wound or something... And well, I honestly don't think I had a risk, but I don't know and it would be a relief to know that doesn't represents risk...

Thanks

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ASargent42
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AIDs is transmitted through fluid contact. Given that your hands were dry, I'd worry more about just the passing of bacteria, as opposed to AIDs. You'd have to have direct bodily fluid contact to get that.

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Amanda
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billyguy
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But is there a risk?
Sorry, but I really don't know much about AIDs.

[ 05-08-2008, 02:00 PM: Message edited by: billyguy ]

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ASargent42
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There wasn't a risk. Your hands were dry, and you said it didn't seem like his hands were wet at all either. You'd have to have body fluids from him (semen or blood or even vomit) come in contact with a mucus membrane or a wound on you for there to have been a risk.

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Amanda
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billyguy
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So the virus needs to be in the fluid in order to make a risk?
And I've read now that even though you have unprotectedsex with someone infected you don't necessarily get infected too. Is that true?

I mean, is not like I'm wanting to gamble it or anything like that =p
But what I mean is that if its sometimes it doesnt transmit in the most risky scenario, then its impossible to transmit in the scenario I posted.

He touched my hands like for a second, and not full, he just took the coins from my hand and touched it... and I think it wasnt wet, my hands weren't wet, I still kinda wiped them off, and ate. And then I washed my hands and a couple of hours later I went to the bathroom and touched my penis. That isn't a risk either, right?

And well, in the first place I dont know if he had masturbated or anythign like that, and I also don't know if he has AIDs.

But just asking that if he had I would have had a risk.


Thank you very much, really, really.

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September
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Well, first of all, no one can pass on AIDS. What can be passed on is HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. We've got a very informative article on the site that should help you understand why you were not at risk for contracting HIV from the scenario you described: Positively Informed: An HIV/AIDS Roundup

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Johanna
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billyguy
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I read it, thanks, and read some other stuff.
So there's no way HIV can travel alone... I mean, without any fluid. So even if he had semen, blood or vomit on his hands before, but then my hands were dry, there can't be HIV because there's no fluid. Therefore, It didn't mattered that I touched my penis, or placed my fingers in my mouth eventhough I hade a sore part on it.

So there's no risk at all??

Sorry for insisting so much, but I have anxiety issues [Frown]

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ASargent42
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No risk.

In the same sense that sperm cannot survive without semen (if the sperm is dry, it's dead), it's the same for HIV. No fluid, it's dead.


Billyguy, do you see a counselor or therapist for any of your anxiety issues? I think it might be beneficial for you. We don't mind talkign with you, it just might be more efficient in the long run to have someone you can talk to in person.

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Amanda
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billyguy
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Im not seeing a therapist, but I know that its why I need, but I don't have the money, and its not something I'm comfortable with talking to my parents to ask them for the money. And time is also an issue, but I could find some time.
Is there anything I could do to control anxiety? Besides seeing a therapist/counselor?
I know that you can't help me that much, but you do really help me, really. At least I know that I have an issue and its not pregnancy nor HIV, thank God. BTW, my gf's withdrawal bleed was today, everything normal as it should be.

All this started with the trauma of that pregnancy scare I told you in "BC pills issue", but it also has to do with something in the past. I went to a catholic school, and there was a teacher that told us that HIV was so so small it could go through condoms "pores", which is a myth. And my sexual education was pretty much internet education since in school it was VERY poor. And now I know more, but eventhough I find the answers myself, because of this new anxiety issues it doesn't seems enough to ease my mind. So I go to you, so you answer me and prove that I was right, that there was nothing to be scared of. Also I thought (dont know why) that any contact with HIV would get you infected. But now i've read that you can have unprotected anal sex with HIV positive and still not get infected (its the most risky situation, and its obviously gambling with your life which isn't cool at all), but I mean, its really different to what I thought, it needs certain amount of the virus to get you infected and bla bla.

I read that chances were like 1 in 50, in a doctor's webpage (http://www.gay.com/health/hiv/?coll=health_fitness&sernum=3288&page=2), of getting infected with unprotected anal sex for the receiver (which is the most dangerous act). I don't trust that, but I think it isnt 1 in 1 either. What do you think are the chances? (Just to learn more, my case is far from that thanks god)

Thanks!

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billyguy
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The little sore I had in my tongue its hurts a little more than the day of the incident.
I mean, before it was a really small sore (like a pimple, or a little bump), now its still small... but I think im feeling it a little more. Is there a reason to be worried?

I feel it normal, but Im associating it with the incident. Could it be that i contracted the virus and the sore got worse and i got hiv or something like that? Symptoms are like oral ulcers... could it be that?

Also, my eyes kind of itch-ed me.

[Frown]

[ 05-12-2008, 02:51 PM: Message edited by: billyguy ]

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ASargent42
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The little sore could just be an irritated tastebud. And your eyes itching could be allergies. These symptoms that you are noticing could be from absolutely anything.


And besides, I'm pretty sure you wouldn't be seeing symptoms this soon anyway.

The typical incubation period for HIV is 2-4 weeks, and it's asymptomatic. You wouldn't be noticing anything related to having HIV. The second stage can last around a month, and is when you might start feeling fluish and perhaps getting oral ulcers. The third stage is the latency stage, and can last anywhere from 2 weeks to 20+years.

The earliest you could potentially get a test to see if you contracted HIV would be in 3 months. You would test again 3 months after that (6 months after the original exposure).


But seriously, Billyguy, you had NO RISK from this experience. Unless there was somethign you didn't tell us, from what you described, you are fine.

Does your university have a counseling service they provide for you, as a student? They might be someone useful to get in touch with, if money is such an issue. And is this the only subject in which you suffer from so much anxiety? Because if there are other areas in your life in which you stress over so much, then perhaps talking to your parents about might be a good idea. They could help you pay. And i don't know what healthcare is like in Peru, but if your parents have health insurance, you could see if therapist visits are covered on the insurance.


Other than that, I think the best way to deal with your anxiety is to be as informed as possible about things that worry you. DO as much research as you can from reliable sources (up-to-date encyclopedias, medical books, etc). Try to stay away from internet research, as it can be hard to find really, honest-to-goodness accurate information.

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Amanda
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billyguy
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Well, I told you all that could possibly happen.

He touched my hand to pick up some coins. I sort of felt his hands were dirty (he is a homeless guy with no bathroom or anything, of course it will feel dirty), but I didn't felt it was wet. But I cant know if he previously had blood or semen. And then, I looked at my hand to check... my hand was perfectly healthy, no bruices, cuts or anything, and it was dry, and eventhough it was dry I wipped in my pants just in case. I didn't saw any kind of blood, semen, liquid, solid, anything but my bare and normal hand. And then I ate a sandwich and could have touched my mouth, and inside I had kind of irritated spot on my tongue, and a little bruice on the inside of my mouth, not blleding though... but I also got scared because of bleeding gums because of toothbrushing. So there's no risk, right? Analizing all this possibilities... I cant think of any more.

I looked for HIV helpcenters here, and found one and called... just to ask someone on the phone if it was a risk... and he told me a thousand times no, that unless he was visibly bleeding, and I was visibly bleeding, there was no risk of him touching my hand, and not to worry... and since he felt so helpful I talked to him and told him all that have happened to me lately, since the severe pregnancy scare I had ... that I wash my hands like for 5 minutes after being in a public bathroom and that kinds of OC stuff (that has only been happening lately)... I just kinda developed some sort of OCD ...
But well, his talk was really nice, talking to someone one on one that wasn't only my gf... I felt really relieved. Listening and not only reading that there's no risk. And he offered me to talk with the counselor of the help center... and well, if this persists and I dont find another way, then I'll just do that. This is definately psycological, but I still get anxious and your answers are indeed helpful. Really. So please forgive me if I keep on making stupid questions in the future. I know they are stupid, but getting your answers makes me realize even more that this are indeed irrational fears.

Thanks, really, really. If you have any more comments they're appreciated.


Thanks!

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ASargent42
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I'm really glad you were able to actually talk to someone. I think you ought to take him up on his offer of help, and find out more about talking to the councelor. [Smile]


And once the fluid that HIV is in is dry, it's dead. Even if he had had blood or semen on his hands, if they were dry, and yours were dry, even if it was just from wiping them on your pants, then they were dry. No risk.

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