Living with HIV necessitates self-care and extra precautions to safeguard your health, such as avoiding STDs and other illnesses. Learn how to live a healthy lifestyle in order to effectively control HIV.
You have control over the keys to remaining healthy with HIV. Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Allow your body to rejuvenate each night by eating a healthy, nutritious, and balanced meal and getting enough quality sleep. Take care of your body to strengthen it so that it can fight off illnesses that might endanger your health.
When you have HIV, it is more critical than ever to defend your immune system in order to maintain general health. Your body is considerably more equipped to fight viruses and other sorts of diseases if you maintain it as healthy as possible.
HIV patients must adopt healthy practices into their daily lives. Follow these HIV-healthy living tips:
Getting HIV treatment is important. These tips can assist in ensuring that your medication is effective and that your immune system is in excellent working order.
Eat Nutritious Foods to Maintain Good Nutrition
A good diet can help your immune system stay healthy. Protein-rich foods like fish, beans, and nuts can help you grow muscle. It’s especially crucial to get lots of protein if you’re underweight. Consuming a variety of fruits and vegetables may give critical vitamins and minerals while also keeping you satisfied. People with weak immune systems must also pay particular attention to food safety in order to avoid foodborne illnesses, which can be more difficult to treat.
Exercise out both your mind and your body
Physical and mental exercise can help to maintain your mind and body in good shape. Regular physical activity, such as walking, bicycling, jogging, swimming, or any sport you love, maintains you physically healthy and can help you manage stress and sadness. Physical activity is also beneficial to the immune system. Mental activity, such as performing a daily crossword puzzle or playing brain-challenging games, can aid in the maintenance of cognitive health. Exercise your memory, focus, and attention, which can all be impacted by HIV.
Dealing with physical and emotional health issues
Depression is frequent among HIV patients, and the stress of having HIV can exacerbate depression symptoms. Furthermore, both stress and sadness can exacerbate HIV-related physical discomfort. Controlling stress, sadness, and pain can improve your physical and mental health, making living with HIV simpler. Consult a mental health practitioner if you believe you are depressed, and make sure to disclose that you are taking HIV medication to minimize potential drug interactions between depression and HIV medications.
Reducing stress is an important aspect of your treatment plan since the chronic stress of living with HIV can have a significant impact on your general health and well-being. Stress has been linked to decreased immune system function in studies. Stress can also disrupt your food, sleep patterns, and other everyday activities. Yoga, meditation, exercise, and counseling or therapy are all excellent stress-management techniques.
Avoid using drugs or alcohol
Alcohol and drug abuse can exacerbate symptoms of despair. To help preserve your immune system, avoid illicit substances and take prescription medications as advised by your doctor. Avoiding drug use can also assist in minimizing cognitive (thinking and reasoning) impairment, which is crucial in reducing the risk of HIV-related dementia.
Give up smoking
Anyone can benefit from quitting smoking. Quitting smoking can help you live a happier and more fulfilling life, as well as avoid a variety of health problems and lower your chance of major occurrences such as heart attack and stroke.
Keep infections and diseases at home
Because HIV weakens your immune system, you become more vulnerable to every virus, bacterium, and germ you encounter. To be as healthy as possible, wash your hands regularly and avoid ill individuals. Also, keep all of your vaccines up to date to lower your risk of avoidable diseases.
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene and Take Care of Your Teeth
HIV patients are more likely to have dental and oral issues. When your immune system is weakened by HIV, illnesses including oral warts, fever blisters, thrush, and canker sores become more common and more difficult to treat. Many HIV/AIDS patients also have dry mouths, which can increase the risk of cavities and make regular chewing and swallowing difficult. Brushing regularly and seeing the dentist at least once every six months can help prevent such issues.
Have safe sex
This is the most important item on the list. “Practicing safe sex is crucial,”. Understand how the virus spreads to lower your chances of infecting others. Use condoms not just to prevent HIV transmission, but also to protect yourself and your partner from other sexually transmitted illnesses (STDs) and infections.
Get checked for other sexually transmitted diseases
If you have another STD, also known as STIs, you may be more likely to spread both HIV and your other STD to someone else. STDs can potentially exacerbate HIV and hasten its progression. And because HIV can make STDs more difficult to treat, you should treat an STD as soon as feasible. Because many STDs do not produce symptoms, you may not even realize you have one unless you get tested.
Maintain a close eye on your skin and take any changes seriously
A severe skin infection that does not clear up or react to therapy might occasionally be an indication of something more dangerous. One of the most prevalent adverse effects of HIV drugs is rashes. Keep an eye out for changes in your skin and have any skin concerns checked out as soon as possible.
Maintain Consistency and Take Your Medication on Time
Skipping medicine dosages or failing to take HIV medication on time encourages HIV to replicate, and increased levels of HIV in your body (known as viral load) further damage your immune system. According to the HHS, adhering to antiretroviral medication (ART) can help you attain and maintain an undetectable viral load. If you do not follow your treatment plan, the virus may develop resistance to your HIV medicines.
Follow your doctor’s medication instructions
It is critical that you take your HIV medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Even missing one day of medicine can allow the virus to develop resistance to the medications, rendering them useless against infection. Take your medicines at the same time every day, and have your medication with you at all times so you don’t miss a dosage if you’re away from home.