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How is HIV Transmitted?

HIV can be transferred between people if an infected person's blood or other bodily fluid comes in contact with the blood, broken skin, or mucous membranes of an uninfected person. Most HIV infections occur in through the following:

  • Sexual intercourse (anal, vaginal, and oral sex)
  • Sharing of injecting equipment such as needles or body piercing
  • Blood transfusion or blood products
  • Transmission from mother to child (during pregnancy, childbirth, or breastfeeding)
  • Exchanging bodily fluids
HIV is NOT transmitted by:
  • Coughing or sneezing nor is it airborne
  • Insect bites like mosquito bites
  • Touching or hugging
  • Water or food
  • Kissing and sharing a toothbrush
  • Public baths and toilets