8 Mistakes That Can Affect Your HIV Treatment
With the recent advances in the HIV testing and treatment, persons diagnosed with the disease now have the reason to be more hopeful with their future. Surely, treating the virus will still be challenging, and there are several factors to be considered to maintain a good health. Still, by properly caring for yourself and getting the right medical care for your needs, you’ll surely be able to live the life you want. So don’t let following HIV treatment mistakes get in your way. Learn about them, as well as the ways on how you can completely avoid them.
1. Not Asking for Medical Care from an HIV Specialist
Health experts trained in infectious diseases such as HIV know their field well. Not only are they up-to-date on research, they’re also well-suited to track any changes and address concerns that may cause problems with your treatment plan. Even after confirming their illness through HIV testing, most people still don’t seek anonymous hiv tests from Singapore HIV specialists due to concerns about ability to pay or the worry that there may not be an effective treatment available. However, HIV support programs are available in every state of Singapore to ensure that the affected individuals receive effective treatment regardless of their capacity to pay.
2. Not Following Your Prescribed HIV Treatment Plan
Taking medicines on a daily basis is difficult, but regular medication intake is crucial in HIV care than in most health conditions. Ingesting medicines 90 percent of the time is essential for preventing drug resistance and treatment failure. Drug side effects, costs and depression are just some of the reason you may be tempted to stop following your treatment plan. If you ever encounter any of these difficulties, then consider reaching out to your doctor or a social worker. There are some proven programs that may help you stay on track with regards your treatment plan.
3. Forgetting to Take Your Medications
After getting the results of your HIV screening, it’s crucial that you take all doses of your medicines to maintain a low HIV viral load. Skipping a dose of it will only give the virus a chance to multiply throughout your body, enabling it to mutate to a drug resistant virus. When that occurs, your medication may no longer be effective against the disease. Using calendars, pillboxes, and mobile applications is a good way to remind you of your medication schedule. Having a relative or a friend help you monitor your medicine intake will be beneficial as well.
4. Failing to Inform Your Doctor About Treatment Challenges
Your doctor is always there to address your concerns and respond to your queries. If you experience challenges with your HIV treatment plan, whether it’s related with medication cost, schedule, or side effects, or you emotional state of mind, they are the people you may talk to and help you succeed. You may even ask your doctor to refer you to a social worker, or a medical centre in your area in Singapore capable of giving you the medical services you need.
5. Not Notifying your Doctor about Your HIV Symptoms
If your HIV symptoms flare, it simply means that your treatment plan isn’t working effectively. This is the reason why it’s crucial to let your doctor know about it so he or she can test your viral load and adjust your treatment plan accordingly. The virus is capable of mutating inside your body and become drug resistant over time, but don’t let this discourage you as there are other medication options available to treat HIV.
6. Taking Particular Dietary Supplements
Your HIV treatment regimen is composed of several medications that support one another – but adding a dietary supplement into this mix may cause some problems. For instance, using St. John’s wort while taking HIV medications may cause the latter to be less effective, and increase your risk of developing drug resistance. So before you consider taking any dietary supplement, do consult your doctor first to ensure that there are no risks for adverse interactions in your medicines.
7. Not Regularly Visiting Your Dentist
Getting a positive anonymous HIV test puts you at a greater risk for advanced tooth and gum disease. If your immune system is compromised due to an oral infection, it may lead to other health problems. So practise good oral hygiene on a daily basis by flossing and brushing, and do visit your dentist every six months. Remember that having a good dental care promotes a good overall health.
8. Using Drugs or Alcohol
Drinking alcohol in excess weakens the immune system, and a weakened immune system often have a harder time fending off infections. Aside from that, it also increases your risk of experiencing side effects from the medications. Smoking marijuana irritates the lungs, making you more susceptible to infections like pneumonia.
Alcohol and drugs affect the liver the most since it’s the clearinghouse of all the chemical wastes in your body including prescription medications and recreational drugs. Overworking your liver through excessive drug and alcohol use will only cause it to function ineffectively and may even leave you feeling weak.
Living with HIV can be very challenging, but by undergoing proper treatment you’ll definitely be able to maintain your health and live a long, productive life. So don’t let the aforementioned mistakes get in the way of your successful HIV treatment.
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