Friday, December 1, 2006

World AIDS day

Today is world Aids day. A day of remembering those who have succomed to the disease, which is now one of the top five reasons for premature death world wide. I though today I would give statistics for this disease, and maybe open or re- open some of the eyes in the world. I think sometimes we think this disease is centered on one or more specific groups, and it is stereotyped that way. The fact is, it is growing in every category of sexual preference, race, financial demographics and nation all over the world.

The latest statistics on the world epidemic of AIDS and HIV were published by UNAIDS/WHO in November 2006, and refer to the end of 2006.

People living with HIV/AIDS in 2006 39.5 million
Aduts living with AIDS/HIV in 2006 37.2 million
Women living with AIDS/HIV in 2006 17.7 million
Children living with AIDS/HIV in 2006 2.3 million
People newly infected with HIV 2006 4.3 million
Adults newly infected with HIV in 2006 3.8 million
AIDS deaths in 2006 2.9 million

More than twenty five million people have died of AIDS since 1981. Africa has over twelve million orphans due to AIDS deaths. Now at the end of 2006, women account for 48% of adults living with HIV and AIDS. Young people ages 15-24 account for half of all of the new cases of HIV worldwide at an average of 6000 new cases every day.

As you can see it has not slowed down and is rising everyday. Education and continual reminders to not make stupid and foolish sexual choices need to be driven home everyday. If you are a parent, make your self completely annoying to your children with continuous reminders, and if you are out in the promiscuous sexual scene, please be careful and remember the face of AIDS looks like everybody else. You always need to remember that when having unprotected sexual contact with an individual, you are then having sexual contact with everyone they have ever had unprotected contact with.

You also need to remember that many people wear blinders and have the "it could never happen to me mentality". I know so many of these people that are either sick now, newly infected and or whom have already died from this terrible disease. The pharmaceutical organizations are getting closer to a cure and have medication that is keeping people alive, but remember this it also come with a cost. If you know anyone on the drugs they will tell you it can damage the liver, cause depression, stimulate weight gain and bloat, screw up your digestive tract, cause sever diarrhea, and generally put wear and tear on your entire body. The drugs are lengthening your life span, but the ideal would be abstinence from unprotected sexual contact, and monogamous relationships.

Keeping your immune systems strong is so important these days, and many people that have made foolish mistakes and were lucky enough to have dodged the bullet have a strong immune system to thank for it, and hopefully it was an eye awakening experience. If you have ever been tested for HIV and you really were not sure how the test would come back, and you had to wait the two to three days for the results, I think you will understand the word prayer and promises made if all ca,e back negative.

So this day is for education, remembering and giving thanks that you are still here, healthy and although there might have been foolish times you have had and bad decisions made, hopefully we, you and all of us will learn from our mistakes, and maybe eventually only education will be contagious.

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