WE NEED YOU: Join the #LustforLife Campaign

one_lustforlifeThe #LustforLife Campaign shines a spotlight on the fact that nearly 70% of the 50,000 new HIV infections in the U.S. each year occur in urban communities.

In fact, HIV prevalence in low-income urban areas throughout the U.S. is similar to that of countries where USAID has declared HIV epidemics. Among heterosexual people in urban neighborhoods, HIV prevalence is four times higher than the US national average. By race and ethnicity, African Americans are the most heavily affected by HIV transmission, followed by Latinos.

ONE® Condom’s mission is to increase condom use by creating products and programs that make it easier to learn about, talk about, and practice safer sex. Recognizing that urban communities are among the hardest hit by HIV transmission, and believing that as a community we can make a difference:

They’ve launched the #LustforLife Campaign to bring all of us—artists, health activists, community leaders, and the public—together to shine a national spotlight on this critical issue.  We’re delighted to partner and support them.

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

1) ONE partnered with Billi Kid to curate twenty-two celebrated graffiti and street artists in the New York City area, who wanted to use their talents to raise awareness. ONE provided the artists with ordinary traffic STOP signs, which they have repurposed into powerful works of art.

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Check out the art here.

2) The art will be auctioned off to benefit Lifebeat, a non-profit organization that provides HIV outreach and support to young people in urban communities.

3) ONE is producing condom wrappers inspired by the work of the artists, and will distribute millions of them through public health organizations nationwide. They will also introduce retail 12-packs and other products, and will donate a portion of sales to urban outreach programs.

4) We will use our site to help spread the news about the #LustforLife Campaign and publish articles about HIV and urban youth to raise awareness about condom use.

GET INVOLVED!!

The #LustforLife Campaign is intended to bring people together toward a common goal- stopping HIV in urban communities. Here are ways you can help raise awareness about this public health issue.

Everyone can get involved:

  • Share art or show support for the campaign using #LustforLife. ONE® will choose winners at random each day to win product and swag.
  • Re-post and Re-tweet campaign facts and information from @onecondoms, @theluckybloke, and #LustforLife

Health Activists:

  • Distribute #LustforLife products in your clinics or outreach programs.
  • Register to become an official organizational sponsor of the #LustforLife campaign – help advise us on future launches, initiatives and program elements.

Businesses can get involved:

  • Sell #LustforLife retail products, where a portion of the sale will be donated to urban outreach programs.
  • Show support for your local community by registering to display art during the campaign (currently New York City only)

SOCIAL: Primary hashtag, for use in all communications and social posts: #LustforLife.

Additional hashtags: #ONECondoms, #TogetherONE, #Lifebeat, #BilliKid

WEBSITE: OneCondoms.com/LustforLife, LustforLifeCampaign.com

Tell them their friends at Lucky Bloke sent you!

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Birth Control When You’re Living With HIV/AIDS

Photo credit: Jacinta lluch Valero

Photo credit: Jacinta lluch Valero

Taking medication for HIV? Here’s what you should know to avoid an accidental pregnancy.

If you are one of the 1.1 million people in the U.S. living with HIV or AIDS, you might have heard that your choices of birth control are somewhat limited. The good news is that many methods—including some of the most effective ones—should still work well for you. What you can use for birth control when you’re living with HIV/AIDS depends on whether you are taking anti-retroviral medicine (ARVs) and what your overall health is like. In the following article, Merrie Warden, MD, MPH, at Bedsider, talks details about what you should know when it comes to HIV and contraceptive methods.

Here are some key facts from the article below:

  • The IUD is the most effective form of birth control and is not impacted by the type of medication you are using. However, the IUD does not prevent STI and HIV transmission.
  • Condoms are the only contraceptive today that helps prevent both HIV transmission and accidental pregnancy.
  • The shot, implant and IUD are safe and effective to use with any HIV medication you are using.

This article by Merrie Warden, MD, MPH, was originally published on Bedsider.

BY BEDSIDER | Bedsider.org

I have HIV but I’m not on meds right now. What are my birth control options?

If you’re not taking medications for HIV, the sky’s the limit. You can use any method of birth control, including combined hormonal methods like the pill, the patch, the ring, or more effective methods like the shot, the implant, or the IUD. Just keep in mind that none of these methods prevent the transmission of HIV or other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), so it’s important to use condoms too.

Why use condoms + another method of birth control?

If you’re living with HIV or AIDS, using condoms every time you have sex can help protect you and your partner. Doubling up with condoms and another type of birth control is even better since:

  • Some birth control “side effects” may be a benefit for you. Some birth control methods can make your period lighter, less painful or go away altogether. Others offer long-term prevention of certain types of cancer.
  • Peace of mind that you won’t have an accidental pregnancy feels good. If you’re relying on condoms for birth control, they can slip or break. And planning for pregnancy can give you the ability to have a healthy pregnancy when you want one: less than 1% of pregnant women with HIV give the virus to their babies when taking a special set of medications.

I’m taking HIV medication. What birth control can I use?

The shot, implant, and IUD are effective regardless of what HIV medication you’re on. Whether you can use other types of birth control depends on what type of medication you’re taking.

Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NRTIs). If you’re taking a type of ARV called a “nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor,” like zidovudine or tenofovir, it’s safe to use any type of birth control, including combined hormonal methods like the pill, the patch, or the ring. The scientific evidence shows that these meds and birth control don’t mess with one another. Here’s a list of NRTIs to see if you’re taking one.

Non-nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NNTRIs). There’s some limited evidence that “non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors” like efavirenz or nevirapine may cause small changes in how the pill, patch, or ring is metabolized in your body, though they don’t appear to decrease the effectiveness of these methods. Here’s a list of NNTRIs to see if you’re taking one.

Protease inhibitors. If you’re taking a type of medication called a “protease inhibitor” like combinations of medications containing ritonavir, the medication may make the pill, patch, or ring less effective. Protease inhibitor meds may also mess with the progestin-only or mini pill.

There’s also some evidence that the pill, patch or ring changes how a protease inhibitor with ritonavir is broken down by the body. These changes may make the medication more likely to cause minor problems with your liver or other side effects. Always talk with your doctor about using any of these HIV medications with the pill, patch, or ring. Here’s a list of protease inhibitors.

HIV makes me more vulnerable to infections. Is it safe to use an IUD?

IUDs are the most effective reversible birth control we have, and they do not increase the risk of a pelvic infection. In fact, this is a great method to use to prevent an accidental pregnancy while getting your body healthy on medications.

  • If you have HIV and are healthy, you can use any kind of IUD.
  • If you have AIDS, we usually recommend that you wait until your infection is under control before starting to use an IUD.
  • If you already have an IUD in place and develop AIDS, it is safe for you to keep using it.

I’ve heard that using the shot may increase the risk of transmitting HIV. Is that true?

Health researchers all over the world are working hard to make sure we have the right answer to this important question. It’s possible that there is an association between using the shot and increased risk of getting HIV, but more evidence is needed. Current guidelines from the World Health Organization say that it’s safe for HIV positive people to use the shot, but that condoms should always be used to prevent HIV transmission. For more information just for women living with HIV, check out:

bedsiderBEDSIDER is an online birth control support network for women operated by The National Campaign to Prevent Teen & Unplanned Pregnancy. Bedsider is totally independent (no pharmaceutical or government involvement). Honest and unbiased, Bedsider’s goal is to help women find the method of birth control that’s right for them and learn how to use it consistently and effectively, and that’s it.
Find Bedsider on twitter @Bedsider