A person can only be infected with HIV by coming into direct contact with certain body fluids from a person living with HIV who has a detectable viral load.
These body fluids are
- Semen and pre-seminal fluids
- Vaginal fluids
- Rectal fluids
- Breast milk
For HIV transmission to occur, these fluids must enter another person’s body.
You can get HIV via:
You cannot get HIV via:
Most common ways of HIV transmission are:
Having vaginal or anal sex with someone who is living with HIV and has a detectable viral load, without using a condom or taking PrEP. Anal sex is riskier than vaginal sex.
Less common ways of HIV transmission are:
- From mother to child during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding however, using treatment and other strategies have helped lower the risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV to 1% or less.
- Getting stuck with a needle or other sharp objects that have been exposed to HIV. This is a risk mainly for healthcare providers. The risk is very low.
HIV transmission in extremely rare cases by
- Having oral sex but in general, the chance that an HIV-negative person will get HIV from oral sex with an HIV-positive partner is extremely low.
- Receiving blood transfusions, blood products, or organ transplants that have been exposed to HIV, but the risk is extremely low these days because of rigorous testing of blood supplies and donated organs.