Know Your Health Status
A healthy you is key to a healthy pregnancy. Before you get pregnant, be sure to have a physical exam to evaluate your overall health. Learn your medical history. This is particularly true if you have diabetes, high blood pressure or other chronic diseases. Your visit to the doctor can also help you establish a healthy eating and exercise plan, give you information on local resources that may help you, and uncover if you have untreated infections or sexually-transmitted diseases that could harm you or your baby.
Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes and HIV/AIDS can be passed from a woman to her unborn baby. STIs may result in infant death, premature birth and long-term problems.
Reproductive Tract Infections (RTIs)
Reproductive tract infections such as bacterial vaginosis and urinary tract infections are common for some women. Although bacterial vaginosis is a mild infection, if it’s left untreated it can cause more serious infections. In a pregnant woman, it can lead to preterm delivery, and the baby may be born too early to be healthy.
Urinary tract infections are often painful and affect the bladder. In a pregnant woman, a urinary tract infection may lead to miscarriage or preterm delivery.
HIV and AIDS
What is the Difference?
HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is a virus that damages the immune system. The immune system helps the body fight infection and disease. When the immune system is damaged, it becomes weaker and weaker. At some point, HIV can turn into AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome).
When people develop AIDS, they often get other diseases and infections that are harder to cure. People with HIV can stay healthy for a very long time if they get medical care in the early stages.
Questions Women Should Ask Their Partners
- Do you always use condoms when you have sex?
- Have you had any other sexual partners?
- Have you ever used or shared needles for shooting (injecting) drugs, steroids or getting tattoos?
- Have you ever been tested for HIV? Are you HIV positive?
You can’t look at someone and tell if they have HIV. Many people with HIV look very healthy and might not know that they have HIV. The only way to know if you have HIV is to get tested for HIV. It is time for you to take control. Talk to your partner! Ask questions and get answers.
HIV Testing Locations
Many places offer HIV testing. Locations include local health departments, clinics, your private doctors’ office, hospitals, some community based agencies and other sites set up specifically to provide HIV testing.
To find a HIV testing site in North Carolina, go to your local health department. Or use the Testing Locator below.
Find HIV/AIDS Prevention & Service Providers
Enter your address, city and state, or ZIP Code:
For more information on this widget, please visit AIDS.gov.
Other Health Issues
- North Carolina Sickle Cell Program – For more information, call 1-866-627-2355
- Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Chapters and Care Centers in North Carolina– for locations in your area
- American Diabetes Association – For more information, call 1-800-342-2383
- American Heart Association – For more information, call 1-800-242-8721
- Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc. – For information, call 1-800-421-8453
- Cystic Fibrosis Association – For more information, call 1-800-344-4823
HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections
- NC Public Health: HIV/STD Prevention & Care
- Alliance of AIDS Service – Carolina
- Triad Health Project
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- National HIV and STD Testing Resources
- Types of STDs (GirlsHealth.gov)
- STDs during pregnancy – CDC Fact Sheet
- Mayo Clinic: Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
- AIDSinfo 1-877-696-6775 or 1-800-448-0440
- AIDS Education and Training Centers National Resource Center 1-800-448-0440
- United States Government HIV/ AIDS Information
- Black AIDS Institute
- Latino Commission on AIDS
- The Gay and Lesbian Latino AIDS Education Initiative
Webisodes – HIV and AIDS Awareness
- Webisode #1 (521 MB)
Keeping It Real…get tested
Encourages women to be aware of HIV and AIDS. Stresses the importance of being tested for HIV.
- Webisode #2 (491 MB)
Keeping It Real…What women should know about HIV and AIDS
Important facts that all women should know about HIV and AIDS. Questions women should ask partners before becoming sexually active with them
- Webisode #3 (453 MB)
Keeping It Real…HIV and Pregnancy
The importance of knowing your HIV status during pregnancy, North Carolina law and HIV testing during pregnancy