The virus is transmitted between partners when the fluids of one person come into contact with the blood stream of another person. This contact can occur from a cut or broken skin, or through the tissues of the vagina, rectum, foreskin, or the opening of the penis. Oral sex ranks very low on the list of ways HIV can be transmitted. However, the risk of contracting HIV through oral sex is not zero. The truth is, you can in theory still contract HIV this way.
Can you get HIV through oral sex?
Ways HIV Can Be Transmitted | HIV Transmission | HIV Basics | HIV/AIDS | CDC
You can also use other HIV prevention methods, below. If you have HIV , the most important thing you can do to prevent transmission and stay healthy is to take your HIV medicine known as antiretroviral therapy or ART , every day, exactly as prescribed. Read more about Treatment as Prevention. There also are other options to choose from, below. If you are HIV-negative, you have several options for protecting yourself from getting HIV through vaginal or anal sex.
Can HIV be transmitted through oral sex (fellatio and cunnilingus)?
As the risk of transmission through oral sex is estimated to be much lower than for vaginal and anal intercourse in the absence of antiretroviral therapy, it is implausible that the risk of transmission through oral sex is not affected in the same way as other sexual transmission risks when effective treatment suppresses viral load. When HIV is not fully supressed, the risk of HIV transmission through the mouth is certainly smaller than through vaginal or anal intercourse. If undamaged, the tissues of the mouth and throat are thought to be less susceptible to infection than genital or anal tissues, and an enzyme in saliva also acts to inhibit HIV. Very few cases of transmission through oral sex have been reported amongst gay men despite the continued practice of oral sex often with ejaculation into the mouth by large numbers of men over many years.
Many people find oral sex an intensely pleasurable experience. People use different terms to refer to oral sex including formal terms like fellatio and cunnilingus and slang terms like blow jobs and giving head. Usually oral sex means one person kissing, licking or sucking another person's genitals. Doctors and researchers can't be sure how many people have acquired HIV through oral sex.