Health – Articles

Durban: Monster HIV Unwanted Pregnancies and Prevention Tools

[CWT] Kesia Qulu

The market offers a variety of useful family planning methods and only one HIV prevention tool offered in both male and female condoms exists so far. In this edition, we will focus on male condom and the pill. As we celebrate health month, we steer course on matters in relation to the human-health most impactful situation to our health and well-being affecting our mortality rate negatively or positively.

The HIV monster through unprotected sex and blood transmission has thus far claimed countless lives since its first reported cases of new infections, which were later confirmed to be related to the Human Immune Virus HIV in 1981 in New York, United States of America.  At This point it became clearer and precise enough for the American Health Community to label the course of deaths reported earlier in the 1970’s with identical symptoms to be HIV.

The monster with many names such as: Iqhoksi, Amagama amathathu, Slim disease and Nyama that’s to name a few, began trailing its path of fury making announcements through its identical face. Continent after continent, home after home, human life after human life perished in anguish as the heads of states, academics and health practitioners stood by helplessly unable to halt the very human sexual desire and call, bring an end to injecting drug addicts whose actions result in creation of human nature or deaths. The South African Government has for the last thirty five (35) years since 1982 battled the war of survival against the HIV monster’s intelligence. According to a publication released by the South African History Online (SAHO) in the 90s estimated between 74,000-120,000 South Africans living with HIV.

Today, two decades later, we can say strides of progress have been made in various areas of research. However, a newer challenge has risen since an increase of HIV infections among girls and young women ages 10-24 is believed to be on the upscale. A Stats SA media release in 2017 on the pregnancy front seems to be winning the battle showing that records of live births by teenagers and pre-teens has declined by 10.6%, which is about a total of 969 415 births registered in South Africa in 2016 indicating that a decline of 10% from the 1 084511 births registered for 2015, of the 969 415 births.

The South African National Health Department (SANHD) through its Adolescent and Youth Health Policy (YHP) 2017 implementation programs such as: Adolescent and Youth Friendly Services (AYFS) and She Conquers Campaign (SCC) hope to change the current reality and achieve the UNAIDS 90-90-90’s bold and ambitious target which is: 90% of all people living with HIV. The purpose of the programs is to help beneficiaries know their status as 90% of all people diagnosed with HIV positive receive ARV treatment therapy, 90% of all people receiving ARV treatment be viral suppressed by 2020 and fast-track the strategy to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

In evaluating social challenges and the various drivers catalyst, it is clear that efforts are being made to reach out to the youth of south Africa to tap into their mind-set through community participation, clinics schools and other initiatives has begun to render positive results particularly in the area of pregnancy prevention. It is sad, however, to see that evidently the same cannot be said in the area of save sex; girls and young women enjoy and prefer unprotected sex which comes with great exposure to the HIV monster alongside with other sexual transmitted infections.

Let us have a closer look at the pros and cons of your choice in terms of the male condom or the pill. In a sexual relationship, a couple must decide which will it be whether the wife popping the birth control pill or the husband wearing the condom, it’s safe to say there is no easy nor fair answer to this predicament, which lead us to zoom in on the two options bellow and you decide.

Boasts of 91% success rate with Typical use

The Pill – Pros

  • Very effective against pregnancy when used correctly
  • Makes menstrual periods more regular and lighter
  • Makes you less likely to get ovarian and uterine cancer, pelvic Inflammation disease, ovarian cysts and anemia
  • Decreases menstrual cramps acne
  • Doesn’t Interrupt Sexual activity

Cons

  • Doesn’t protect against STI’s
  • Doesn’t protect against HIV
  • Depending on Insurance , your birth control may be free or there may be a co-pay
  • Need to remember to take every day at the same time
  • Can’t be used by women with certain medical problems or by women taking certain medications.
  • Can occasionally cause side effects such as nausea, increased appetite, headaches and very rarely blood clots.
  • Need a prescription still need condoms to lower the risk of STIs

Boast of 82% Success rate with Typical use

Male Condoms – Pros

  • Lowers risk of STI’s
  • Contraception that Provides the most

Protection against sexually transmitted infections (Latex condoms are best)

  • Do not cost much and can be found in many stores and need no prescription. “Men feel they can last longer” when using a condom
  • Allow men to have an active part in preventing pregnancy

Cons

  • Have to use a New one overtime you have sexual intercourse

(Can only be used once)

  • May Disrupt/Interrupt sexual activity as it needs to be put on just before penetration
  • Can break
  • Women may be allergic to Latex. Back

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