7. Have a Little Faith
No matter if you worship in a cathedral, a temple, or on the sofa, most physicians believe that some form of spirituality can help people better cope with their health problems. Religion can also help you build their social circle and feel generally more positive.
8. Make Friends —Not Just the Online Kind
Having strong relationships with other people can be a matter of life or death. A joint review by Brigham Young University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill of existing research on the topic found that people with weak social connections were 50% more likely to die in the research's follow-up period ''an average of 7.5 years'' than their peers with strong social bonds. To fight feelings of loneliness, Lopez encourages joining support groups for people with HIV or finding friends or family members you can depend on to let you vent to every once in a while.
''Do not isolate yourself, and don't make [HIV] a secret,'' Lopez says. ''I always think that clients, no matter how long they've been living with HIV, should find other people to talk to.''
9. Kick the Habit for Good
It's common knowledge that cigarettes are bad for everyone, but an estimated 60% of HIVers still smoke.
''In the beginning, when people had an AIDS diagnosis and they were given eight to 16 months to live, we overlooked their smoking habit,'' Risley says. As people are living longer, it's important to remember that smoking may cause mitochondrial infections'mitochondria are an energy-producing feature of human cells. Also, some people with HIV have a heightened susceptibility to cardiovascular disease, and smoking compounds that risk. Plus, of course, there's smoking's association with lung cancer.