What’s the impact of HIV and AIDS on gay and bisexual men?

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National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2019 National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2019
National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2019

Gay and bisexual men are the population most affected by HIV in America. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2016, gay and bisexual men accounted for 67% of the new HIV diagnoses in the United States and six dependent areas.

According to the CDC, in 2016, in the United States and six dependent areas, more African-American gay and bisexual men received an HIV diagnosis than Hispanic/Latino or white gay and bisexual men.

Because of the high percentage of gay and bisexual men suffering from HIV, the risk of being exposed is increased for a gay or bisexual man.

National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2019
National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day 2019

Other factors may also put them at risk for HIV infection:

1) Anal sex

Most gay and bisexual men contract HIV from having anal sex without using condoms or taking preventive medicines for HIV. Anal sex is the most perilous form of sex for getting HIV or passing it on to others.

2) Homophobia, stigma, and discrimination

This type of negative attitude towards homosexuality may dissuade them from getting tested for HIV and finding health care to prevent and treat the disease.

The gay and bisexual men can take the following steps to reduce the risk of HIV infection:
Choose less risky sexual behaviors.

Open anal sex is the most dangerous type of sex for getting HIV. Insertive anal sex (topping) is less risky for getting HIV than receptive anal sex (bottoming). In general oral sex is the safest as there is little to no risk of getting or transmitting HIV.

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Limit your number of sex partners.

The more partners you have, the more likely you are to have a partner with poorly controlled HIV or to have a partner with a sexually transmitted disease (STD). Both factors can increase the risk of HIV transmission.

Use condoms correctly every time you have sex.

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