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AIDS Epidemic

A minute has gone by; has anything changed?

You may not see a sudden change but in that minute,

six children became infected with HIV, which totals

8,500 children and young people becoming infected

with HIV a day. HIV stands for Human immunodeficiency virus.

A person who has HIV is susceptible to many different

diseases and viral infections, because the virus

gradually destroys the immune system.

Once a person becomes infected with HIV, they will

eventually enter the deadly last stage called AIDS.

AIDS stands for acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

"It is characterized by signs and symptoms of severe

immune deficiency" (Yahoo 1).

AIDS has become a major problem facing children

today, because so many children have or will die from it.

Since a lot of children die from AIDS, it has become ranked

seventh among the leading cause of death for the United States

within the age range of one to fourteen. In the year 1996 the United

States had 7,629 cases of AIDS in children who are younger than thirteen

and 2,754 cases were reported within the young adult range of thirteen to

nineteen. In the same year (1996) it is estimated that 1.3 million children

died from AIDS. There are a lot of children being infected with and or

dying from AIDS as the year's progress. Startling projections about the

year 2000 have been made. The projections for the year 2000 are that five

to ten million children will be infected HIV/AIDS, and that same number

of children will be orphaned by it (The National 1).

Children are dying of HIV/AIDS because there is no cure yet to be found.

The only thing that can be done to help someone with HIV/AIDS is to

try and prolong the virus's deadly effects, so the person with AIDS can

hopefully live a longer life. The only way to prolong the virus is to

follow doctor's orders and take medications like AZT (A drug that helps people

with HIV/AIDS, by following this advice a person can only hope that it will help them.

So if there is no cure for HIV/AIDS than why do so many people contract it

knowing that they will eventually die? The reason older people contract AIDS

is usually because they are careless and have either unprotected sex or they use drugs.

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