Factors that affect HIV treatment adherence

Some people may not disclose their status to their family because of fear of stigma and judgement.

Some people may not disclose their status to their family because of fear of stigma and judgement.

What you need to know:

  • It can be difficult for people living with HIV/AIDs to adhere to their treatment if they are depressed, use drugs, do not feel supported, lack food and shelter.
  • Understanding the factors that affect your ability to take care of yourself will help you find solutions that work best for your situation.
  • People living with HIV/AIDs may not disclose their status for fear of being judged by those around them.

Depending on the region, age, and social status, patients are likely to have distinct challenges that make it difficult to adhere to medication.

Stigma

The stigma and discrimination associated with HIV may increase patients' stress, anxiety, and depression. This usually makes it difficult for the patient to follow their treatment regimen because they are worried about being discriminated against or rejected.

Drugs use

Patients who abuse drugs are likely to engage in behaviours that put their health at risk. This makes it difficult for them to adhere because they do not feel the need to take care of themselves.

Non-disclosure

Some people may not disclose their status to their family because of fear of stigma and judgment, and lose out on the support of family, friends, and loved ones.

Forgetfulness

Lack of motivation can affect adherence as patients may become uninterested in taking care of themselves or following their treatment regimen due to a lack of interest in their health.

Insufficient education

Lack of knowledge about HIV/AIDs can affect adherence. Some people do not understand the benefits of adhering to treatment and hence engage in risky behaviour that compromises their health.

Low satisfaction with healthcare services

If patients are not satisfied with the care and support they receive from health providers, it may affect adherence. This includes feeling that the healthcare provider is not providing enough information about treatment or lacks empathy. In that case, they may be less likely to adhere.

Socioeconomic factors

Some people are forced to prioritise making money over taking care of themselves due to financial issues. This makes it difficult for them to adhere since they have to work to make money, and this may keep them from following their treatment schedules.

Non-adherence in pregnant women

Stigma

People living with HIV/AIDs may not disclose their status for fear of being judged by those around them. This makes it difficult for pregnant women to adhere to their treatment regimen since they are worried about how people may react if they find out that they are HIV-positive.

Antiretroviral drugs side effects

Side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea can make it difficult for pregnant women to take treatment during pregnancy. In addition, pregnancy itself has side effects such as back pain and fatigue, making it difficult for women to take their medication.

Lifestyle changes

HIV/AIDs treatment is usually accompanied by lifestyle changes that may be hard for pregnant women to follow given the demands of pregnancy.

Inadequate emotional and financial support from spouses

Financial problems can affect adherence as it may be difficult for the woman to purchase her medication or attend clinics regularly. This can also lead to conflict.

Poverty, lack of food

If there is inadequate money to buy food or pay for necessities such as rent and water bills, it will be difficult for the woman to adhere because other concerns take priority. Distance from clinics plays a significant role.

Welcome!

You're all set to enjoy unlimited Prime content.