Take control of your health. Ask your doctor to test you for HIV. Get informed about your options. Break the silence and encourage others to do the same. Your HIV test is your voice to take charge of your health! These are a few steps you can take to change the way people think about getting tested for HIV.
Get the facts
The only way to know for sure whether you have HIV is to get tested. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care. It is also important to get tested for Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD’s) as part of your annual medical visit. Don’t assume your provider is testing you for “everything.” Make sure to specifically ask to get tested for HIV. Knowing your HIV status gives you powerful information to help you take steps to keep you and your partner healthy.
Get tested and encourage others to do so too.
Visiting a health center for testing services can sometimes be intimidating. Bring or join a friend and support each other in getting tested, knowing your status, and accessing additional information about how to stay healthy and prevent HIV. Don’t know where to get tested, it’s easy to find a clinic for confidential and free services.
Share your experience on social media. Break the stigma.
The more comfortable you are with your experience the more confident you will feel about sharing thoughts on why it is so important to get tested. Many people still refuse to get tested for HIV when they visit their doctor. By sharing your experience you may be able to encourage others to do the same.v
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This blog was reposted from TeenSource.org, a project of Essential Access Health. TeenSource.org is an online hub for comprehensive and teen-friendly information on birth control, STDs, relationships and teen’s rights to accessing sensitive services. The site features youth-developed blogs and videos, a clinic finder, a Condom Access Project and links to TeenSource social media where youth can stay updated on relevant sexual and reproductive health information and news.