Living With HIV: Facts You Need to Know

There are a number of misconceptions and stigma attached when you get diagnosed with HIV, but fortunately over recent years these rumors have dwindled. Facts and accurate information have reached a lot of people and make them understand the disease better, along with understanding the situations of the people who have the disease and the lifestyle changes they must undergo because of testing positive in their HIV screening.

In Singapore, the number of HIV positive citizens rose to 6,685 based on a 2014 survey. That is equivalent to one person being HIV positive for every 826. The figures only remained consistent with new reported cases annually, and more often than not they continuously increase in count.

Living with HIV has been made bearable and easier to manage now thanks to the many advances in medicine and treatment. This article will present key basics on how to constantly keep in touch with your doctors, begin treatment, and manage lifestyle changes you need to make as you deal with life accordingly — as someone who is diagnosed with HIV.

Talk to your doctor

Constantly keeping in touch with your doctor who did the hiv test doctor in Singapore for you is important as you begin treatment. You must let them know of your diagnosis and cooperate with every question they may ask afterwards regarding your circumstances. Sometimes, they may also want to check your personal test results and get additional information about your diagnosis, such as how long it has been since you underwent the HIV testing, if you tested positive with other sexually-transmitted diseases, and how you were potentially exposed to the virus.

A physical exam is generally conducted during your first consultation, which helps your doctor establish a baseline or point of reference they can easily refer to as your condition progresses. You may also be subjected to a lot of blood tests to get your viral load checked as well as your CD4+ T-cell levels. The results of these tests will establish how much the virus has taken toll on your immune system.

Keep track of your condition

Diagnosis and treatment can get confusing at times, to the point of leaving you overwhelmed by all the medical jargon and various names of medications you have to familiarize. Keeping a journal alongside with you as you conduct your treatment is helpful especially in keeping track of all the information your doctor provides every session.

Jot down everything you need to remember such as any questions or concerns you have in mind, or anything you want to research further on. This is also essential once you start taking new medication, enabling you to keep track if it has any side effects on your body. You will be surprised just how much keeping log of the crucial information can help a lot in confronting the virus.

Find support

It is easy to wallow in negativity once you are diagnosed with the virus, but the thing is, you do not necessarily have to deal with the burden alone. Keep the weight off your shoulders because it might only drag you down. You need to deal with your condition with your head held high. Talking with others who are diagnosed, or has been diagnosed with the virus, will reassure you that you are not alone in your battles.

Support is out there, you just have to know where to find it. If you feel unsure in making choices about medication and treatment, talk it out with another person to offer you another perspective aside from your own. Find someone who is willing to listen. Start with opening up about the results of your anonymous HIV test to a loved one or a family member. Online support groups are available at your convenience, as well.

Adapt healthy lifestyle habits

Treatment does not stop after successfully availing the best medication for your case. Taking good care of your body in general can take better care of your well-being, especially now more than ever that you are diagnosed with HIV. Adapting healthy habits can prevent other possible complications brought by the infection like heart disease, obesity, and even cancer.

Start with eating a healthy and balanced diet with lots of vegetables and fruits, lean protein, and whole grains. Cut off on your junk food consumption and opt to eat whole foods instead. Always remember that good food is also good medicine. With your immune system compromised, you might as well put effort into maintaining it at its best as well as provide it with the ample energy it needs.

Change treatments when necessary

After some time, you might need to change treatments from the one you’ve grown quite used to because of a number of reasons. This is usually because of a decrease in drug absorption, poor adherence to the prescribed dosage, an ineffective combination of two different medicines, among the many others. Sticking onto the same antiretroviral therapy throughout isn’t always the case.

The fight against HIV requires you to explore and consider every treatment option possible. It’s better to consult your doctor about his professional opinion over the matter. It also won’t hurt to ask a second opinion from a different doctor in case you want to widen out your options further.

Your life does not stop after getting declared positive in a HIV testing. It’s okay to feel initially confused and overwhelmed, but at some point you have to learn how to deal with the illness with your head held high and be confident the disease won’t get a better hold over you. Thanks to the many great advances in the field of medicine, life with HIV has become easier to manage. You just have to know how to deal with the disease efficiently.

Secrets to a Gorgeous After-Party Bridal Look

Sometimes, women don’t want to change outfit, especially when there’s so little time to spare – and that’s totally understandable. Perhaps you’ve seen a bride, still on her wedding dress, walking on the streets from one venue to another, and you’re considering of doing the same.

However, there are a couple of things you need to know first if you want to take that route, particularly about your wedding dress. Expect that your wedding night will be a little rowdy, so here are some tips for brides in Singapore who are set on donning their bridal dresses to the after-party bar hopping.

1. A dress made of lighter materials is more party friendly.

Traditional wedding gowns are made of heavy materials that make them uncomfortable to wear. The fabrics are bulky and heavy and are often decked with beadwork that adds up to the weight of the gown. Sounds like your dress? Then, clubbing in it would be a terrible idea. But if you haven’t bought one yet, ask your bridal studio consultant for options that are made of breathable and lighter fabrics. Choosing a dress that’s easier to wear would be an appropriate and much better option for an all-night after-party.

2. Picking a two-piece wedding dress will make outfit changing easier.

Trendy and unique, a two-piece wedding dress from a recognised bridal studio in Singapore is a fun way to switch from aisle-appropriate to downtown chic in seconds. One of the most stylish favourites is Sarah Seven’s Delancey crop top and Utopia skirt. The fully sequined top pairs glamorously with the crepe skirt, but by switching the bottom with high-waist pencil skirt, you’re stylishly good for a night of drinks and dance.

3. Ask your salon about a detachable skirt.

Worried about tripping, getting tangled on things, or tearing the skirt of your dress? Discuss with your bridal boutique about making some parts of your wedding gown detachable—think of an elegant mermaid style gown that transforms into a flattering bodycon. But if you choose to brave the odds and wear your dress as it is, change into more comfortable undergarments that will allow you to move freely.

4. Pick a short wedding dress appropriate for night-outs.

A bride planning to bar hop on the night of her wedding is likely to choose a non-traditional wedding gown. If you’re having an after-party celebration in a club or a bar later in the night, get a tea-length, sheath, or modern mini dress that will go with a casual atmosphere of most clubs and bars.

5. Be careful with see-throughs.

If you don’t want to change from your wedding dress to a more party-appropriate outfit, keep your choice sophisticated and wholesome. This means no see-throughs or any dress that that reveals too much skin. Lace-sleeved dress is fine, but see-through dress revealing too much cleavage is not.

6. Keep in mind that it’s going to be messy.

That’s a fact! When you’re in a club, had a couple of drinks and surrounded with people who can get wild and rowdy, you can’t expect to look as perfect as you first entered the place. If you’re someone who’s carefree and isn’t too careful about spills, stains and rips, then bar hopping in your wedding dress isn’t the best idea. On the contrary, if your wedding dress is couture, cost you an arm and a leg, and falls into the exclusive category, we advise changing into a more comfortable outfit before hitting the club.

7. Change into more comfortable—and appropriate—shoes.

Most bridal shoes are delicately embedded with sequins, beadings, and even laceworks, which may not be the most appropriate for clubbing and bar hopping. If you have plans for after-party celebration, look for silver strappy sandals or stilettos as your bridal shoes. If you prefer the comfort of flats, change into a glamorous pair before partying the night away.

8. Pack some emergency essentials in your purse.

Perhaps, your bridal boutique consultant has warned you that bustles in your wedding dress can’t hold up for long, especially with all of the dancing. So we recommended packing some safety pins and a small sewing kit in your clutch. This way, you’ll make it easier for your bridesmaids to help you fix yourself in case of a wardrobe malfunction.

Some more wedding dress tips for after-party bar hopping:

• Explore Your Options

As mentioned, two-piece dress give you the best of both worlds. But don’t limit your options to these dresses and the traditional wedding dresses. There are cocktail dresses, even prom dresses (in white) and pantsuits. Talk to your bridal studio about your party plans, so that they can give you some creative inputs and practical advice for your bridal dress.

• Expect a Lot of Attention

If you’re someone who doesn’t enjoy the attention of everybody, wearing your wedding dress to bars and clubs can make you feel uncomfortable, since you’ll likely attract attention. The upside, however, is that strangers are more likely to buy you drinks as congratulatory gift.

• Be As Comfortable As Possible

Wear flats, change into more comfortable undergarments, switch dresses if you must—do whatever it takes to make you feel comfortable clubbing and bar hopping throughout the night.

Traditional bridal gowns are floor-length dresses that exhibit elegance, sophistication, and conservativeness all in one. However, if you intend to wear the same dress to a club party after your wedding, it’s ideal to pick one that doesn’t only show sophistication, but also reflects your fun and quirky side. Keep these essential points in mind, and you’ll be the coolest and trendiest Singapore bride of your generation.