How is HIV spread?
HIV lives in certain body fluids of people infected with HIV - blood, semen, breast milk, and the fluids in the vagina. The virus is spread when these fluids get into the body of another person.
This means that HIV can be spread by:
- unsafe sex with someone who has the virus. This is the most common way HIV spreads.
- unclean needles or syringes,or any tool that pierces or cuts the skin.
- blood transfusions, if the blood has not been tested to be sure it is free from HIV.
- pregnancy, birth or breastfeeding, if the mother or father is infected.
- contact with infected blood if it gets into cuts or an open wound of another person.