Question

Dear Ryan. Thanks for the good work. I recently have a hair cut in a salon. At the time when the hair dresser use the electric hair razor to cut my hair around my ear, I feel a bit of pain, like something have scratch my back of my ear, the pain is not hurt much, so the hair dresser contiune the hair cut. After 10 minus, he finish the hair cut and tell me to shampoo my hair, when he washing my hair, his finger touches the area where I feel the hurt before. After the hair cut, when I go back home, I notice I got a tiny cut about 1mm in length on my back of my ear, and I use some alochol with cotton to clean it, it got some blood mark on the cotton, but the colour is very light. I am afraid I will get HIV infected in this situtation, since I don't know whether the hair dresser's hand when he washing my hair got fresh cut or not, please advice.

Answer

There is no evidence that HIV is spread through contact with hairdressers, manicurists, massage therapists, and the like, as long as you are not having sex with them and not sharing needles. The odds of you hairdresser having HIV, having a fresh cut on his hand, having the blood come into contact with the cut on your ear, and then transmitting HIV to you are extremely unlikely.

If you remain stuck on the idea "well, what if...?", then I'd suggest that you take a look at how your feelings of worry and fear play a role in your life. For some people, anxiety and ideas about HIV infection go hand-in-hand. Problematic anxiety can respond well to treatment with a mental health professional.

See "HIV Infection Risks?" (http://www.thebody.com/Forums/AIDS/SafeSex/Archive/TransmissionNon/Q8740.qna) for more info.

RMK