The Link Between HIV and Addiction

The Link Between HIV and Addiction

HIV is a virus that can be spread through several avenues, including IV drug use. Those who engage in injection drug use put themselves at risk of a variety of problems including infections and viruses like HIV. While HIV cases are reportedly declining nationwide, communities throughout the country are seeing a rise in HIV/AIDS cases for IV drug users.

 

Why the Number of HIV Infected Drug Users Is Growing

Larger cities and communities have resources such as safe injection sites and needle exchange programs to assist in harm reduction initiatives. These efforts are aimed at helping reduce the number of “dirty” used needles drug-addicted individuals may be utilizing when injecting drugs. By taking the used needles out of the equation, these programs aim to stop the spread of viruses and diseases like HIV.

Smaller communities that have not historically faced challenges with HIV/AIDS may not be as prepared for the rise of injection drug use and HIV cases. Following opioid injection HIV outbreaks, the CDC released a map of at-risk areas that may experience their own HIV outbreaks due to intravenous drug use and lack of resources, and most of the identified counties are along the Appalachian Trail. 1

Viral hepatitis and HIV are both risks associated with IV drug use, but drug and alcohol use in general can also increase the risks of spreading or contracting HIV due to reduced judgement when intoxicated.2

 

Staying Safe with Sobriety

Injection drug use can increase a person’s risk of developing infections and diseases that can be deadly in a worst-case situation. At Banyan Treatment Centers, we know that sobriety is the safest way to avoid injection drug use dangers like HIV, skin infections, and other viruses.

If you or someone you love is struggling with intravenous drug use of heroin or other substances, it is time to get help. Our Banyan Treatment Centers family of facilities can guide patients through all steps of treatment, from drug detox to alumni rehab programs and more. We offer our patients personalized treatment paths to fully address and heal the disease of addiction. You are not alone, call 888-280-4763 to learn more about our luxury drug and alcohol treatment.

 

Sources:

  1. CDC – Vulnerable Counties and Jurisdictions Experiencing or At-Risk of Outbreaks
  2. HIV.gov – How Can Using Drugs Put Me at Risk for Getting or Transmitting HIV?

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