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Date of last update: 10/12/2017.

Forum Name: AIDS

Question: Precautions for small children with HIV family member

 Worried_Mom2 - Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:01 pm

I just recently found out that my children's grandmother (their fathers mother) is HIV positive. I by no means want to eliminate her contact with her grandchildren, however I do believe that a basic understanding needs to be established before hand.

Their father and I can not seem to agree on the matter at hands and instead it's causing huge disagreements. Our children are ages 4 and 1. So needless to say, they are active, they fall, they constantly are scrapped and scratched.
My 1 year old is a typical toddler --putting everything in her mouth, etc. They're just normal children.

I have asked that the children not be left alone with her. For one, they are just not old enough to understand and should something happen (she has epilespy as well for example), not be able to take the precautions needed.

I've also asked that they not eat or drink after her. She's famous for 'sharing' her drinks with the kids, but as mentioned, they're typical kids, and whose knows the cuts they have? Not to mention the cutting teeth of my youngest.

I've also chose to dress them in pants and to make sure they have socks and shoes on when at her house. This is in effort to protect their banged and scratched knees, etc. (I didn't ask this, but I just chose to do it...because so much turmoil started just with the first two above mentioned request)

Am I (if possible) being too cautious?
Their father is now accusing me of being heartless and cold. He's accusing me of pouring salt into a wound, so to say...not caring about his mother, but causing her more hurt.

I just feel like I can not be safe enough, nor do I think I've asked for anything above and beyond.
I am actually offended myself, that HE as the children's father is not just as concerned as I am.
I'm also dumbfound that their grandmother wouldn't want to protect her grandchildren as well.

Even if the risk are slight...isn't it still worth it to just be safe?? I don't believe I've been unfair in my request.

Am I wrong?

Are there other things that I need to take precautions with or watch for?

Please advise!!
 Smartpatrol9 - Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:43 pm

Well, I'm no doctor but I have done tons of research on HIV since I once thought i was positive (I'm not though thank god).

You are right to be cautious. How horrible would it be to have your children get infected at such a young age (or any age)?

Now, as far as the sharing of drinks go, I wouldn't worry so much about that. It has been shown that HIV is not transmitted through saliva, and that the only way for that to be possible is if there is blood in the saliva and the children have cuts in their mouth, but remember, this method or transmission is highly unlikely to occur, the chance of it happening are essentially zero.

You need to keep this in mind, HIV is an incredibly fragile virus, unless you come into contact with wet blood almost immediately, there is little to no chance of contracting the virus. According to the CDC, up to 90-99% of the virus is inactivated once the blood is dry, and that was under laboratory conditions in which concentrations of HIV were 100,000 times higher than those found in real life.

Now, you may be pouring salt into the wound, but with good reason. I don't know how she contracted it, but regardless, you must remain cautious. If she cares about the kids, then she will agree that these measure's are in the children's best interest.

If you are still worried or unsure of what to do, please visit the CDC's website and look up the HIV/AIDS transmission fact sheets as provided below.

Good luck: ... ission.htm

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