Knowing that you have a family member that is infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus can be a daunting experience, especially if most of the members are not aware and have little to no knowledge of the disease. These days, you will see a group of the non-organizational group conducting health teachings to the community regarding awareness of HIV and it is encouraged that you can attend these kinds of meetings for the benefit of yourself and to the family members.
If you are living with a family member that have HIV, it is important that you know the should and shouldn’t. Most of these are about the practice of proper hygiene. Here are the following tips as to how you’re going to prepare your home.
The universal code- One of the effective ways of prevention to any spread of germs carried by each in the home is to do hand washing. This is simple and yet often neglected by people. Did you know that the dirtiest part of the human body is the hands? This is because it carries more germs as to whatever object it holds. How does this work? Simple, all you need is to have a soap, water, and a clean hand towel before you are going to prepare your food, before and after eating and even washing your hands after you have used the toilet. Everything that your hands can touch, you need to clean them more often to avoid the spread of any bacteria and infection that will stimulate the cause of sickness.
Personal toiletries and articles – Beware of sharing your belongings. If you are used to sharing it with the member who has HIV, it’s about time that you protect yourself also. Examples are sharing of razor blades, toothbrushes, and other personal belongings that are a connection with blood and body fluids that may cause the spread of the virus that will lead to illness.
The bathroom- This may be shared by everyone in the household, but take note when it comes to in contact with the toilet seat, bathtub, shower, and the sink. Surfaces of your bathroom floor may easily be soiled, such as any secretions of blood or mucus found in the bathroom. It is important that you’re going to clean it with a heavy duty disinfectant and or a detergent that will clean the entire bathroom. Remember to use gloves when you are going to clean as this will serve as your protection.
If the HIV member wants to prepare food for the entire family, rest assured that HIV is not transmittable through it unless he or she have experienced any cuts from the knife. It is also important that you remind him or her to do hand washing before and after preparing the food.
Household waste- take note on disposing household waste, especially from an HIV member. It important that you take extra precaution in handling anything as this may cause the spread of infection, and this is why you need to wear gloves to protect yourself and at the same time protect your family from any presence of bacteria.
Linens for laundry- if in case there are any soiled linens from the HIV member such as urine, blood, vomit, stool always remember to place it in a separate bag of plastic.
In conclusion, family members and so much more to the member who has HIV is not an easy feeling. The emotional stress that the illness can give may sometimes lead to
depression; that is why counseling is offered to family members and the HIV member for them to release their thoughts and feelings towards the situation. The advantage of counseling is to impart awareness and knowledge on the family and encouragement to support the HIV member.