Anonymous
What's the difference between taking HIV infected blood into mouth and eating food with HIV blood? Why is there risk for taking HIV blood into mouth but not for HIV infected food? I don't understand why as both are taking HIV into the mouth, just on a different object?

What about HIV infected objects? Eg. A fork that has HIV infected blood on it
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Anonymous
Hi there,

Thanks for contacting AIDS Vancouver for HIV/AIDS-related information.

First of all, let me clarify by telling you that there are no such thing as HIV infected objects. "Even if blood containing HIV is on it," you say? Even then. Why? Because HIV does not live outside the body. It dies within 60 seconds of exposure to oxygen. HIV is humanly transmitted, not human to object to human.

So when we say "taking blood into the mouth", that might mean fresh blood. Even then, it is very low risk. This is because saliva contains an enzyme that inhibits the production of HIV. So anything through the mouth is just not a very efficient way for the virus to be transmitted. Stomach acids also break it down.

HIV transmission works in the following way: Body fluids containing HIV (i.e. blood) need direct access to YOUR bloodstream through an activity like unprotected anal/vaginal sex. In both the cases you mention, it is very very hard for the virus to gain access to your bloodstream.

I hope I've answered your question. If you have any more, please don't hesitate to ask.

Best

Maggie

AIDS Vancouver Volunteer
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