Youth and PrEP
PrEP, or pre-exposure prophylaxis, is a medication that helps you stay HIV-negative. When taken as prescribed, PrEP is highly effective. PrEP is safe and generally well tolerated. Most health plans (public and private) cover PrEP.
PrEP works for youth, women, men, people of transgender experience, people of all sexual orientations and gender identities, and people who inject drugs.
PEP, or post-exposure prophylaxis is a combination of medications you can take AFTER a possible exposure to HIV if you are not on PrEP or have missed taking PrEP as prescribed. PEP is more effective the sooner it’s started, and must be started within 72 hours of the exposure. PEP is taken daily for 28 days.
Undetectable means that when a person living with HIV regularly takes HIV medications, it keeps the virus at very low levels. This is also called having an “undetectable viral load”. People who take their HIV medicines as prescribed over time and stay undetectable have no risk of passing on HIV through sex. This concept is also known as U=U, short for “undetectable = untransmittable.”
You can use these HIV prevention tools alone or together to have the sex you want and reduce your chances of getting HIV!
PrEP may be an option for you if:
- You wonder how HIV impacts your life
- Condoms are not used with partners of unknown HIV status
- You or your partner(s) recently had gonorrhea or syphilis
- You want to have sex without condoms with a partner who has HIV
- You have sex for money, food, housing, and/or drugs
- You share needles for injecting drugs
TeensHealth provides information for youth on condoms and their usage.
Figuring out how PrEP fits into your life
From Project Inform: Jonathan recently broke up from a long-term monogamous relationship. He's been a little depressed but he's also chatting online and dating quite a bit. Condoms aren't always used. Listen to Jonathan talk about how PrEP has helped ease his mind as he's working through this new stage in his life.
PrEP Education for Youth-Serving Primary Care Providers Toolkit
The PrEP Education for Youth-Serving Primary Care Providers Toolkit is the only toolkit to date focused on supporting PCPs in providing PrEP to youth.
Making the decision with your doctor to use PrEP
From Project Inform: Marcus is just starting out on his own. Here, Marcus talks about not always using a condom and why PrEP may be right for him because he wonders if he can trust what the other guy says about his status.