If you anything like me, the world has been doing the ABSOLUTE most with what seems to be the absolute least. We’ve had, and let me recap (WARNING – Issalot):

Insurrection hearings featuring Donald actin like he ain’t done nothin and Pence being actually not horrible????, Ketanji Brown Jackson hearings (a mess) and swearing in, Roe v. Wade overturned with other rights earmarked for “further discussion,” Ukraine attacked, gas and food prices rising, debates about vaccines, COVID part two: electric boogaloo and part three: you, me and Dupree, Britney Griner FINALLY being seen again after being essentially kidnapped by the Russian government, Black people being found LYNCHED in parks (yet again) and being shot over 60 times by police in northeast Ohio, and more and more and more. Then monkeypox shows up as the spiritual successor of COVID, although Miss Monkey ain’t new.

Who is she, tho? Where she from?

Monkeypox was clocked in 1958 in, you guessed it, monkeys. Even though it is named “monkeypox,” the true origin remains a mystery, even to this day. It is believed that it began somewhere in Africa and that African rodents and primates can pass the virus to human beings, like the first case in 1970 in humans. Before this hellscape of a year, most cases were because of international travel or importing animals from African regions.

What it look like?

So, here is the crazy part; monkeypox can look like any other serious illness, like a flu, until them pox start poppin up like hot grease. The usual symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Aches and pains
  • Headache
  • Lymph nodes on thicc
  • Chills
  • Exhaustion (like TIRED TIED TIDE)

And this is where it gets monkeypox-ish:

  • A rash lookin like blisters/pimples on the face, inside the mouth, hands, feet, genitals, chest, anus, legs n’ hips n’ body-body

The whole illness lasts 2 to 4 weeks and some people only get the rash while others get the rash first, then all the other stuff. So, like I said, doin the absolute most.

How is all these people getting it?

So, scientists tracking the outbreak don’t know where it started. There were just a buncha countries that usually don’t have any cases all of a sudden carryin cases, like the United States. A high number of cases were first found in men who have sex with men, but you know how the United States does and how they will pull out the old HIV/AIDS playbook and make other people feel safe because they aren’t like “those people” (the gays), therefore they aren’t at risk and shouldn’t worry. However, in June 2022, multiple countries reported cases of children with That Monkey including Britain, Rome, and Spain, now waking up the world to the severity and communicability of the virus.

Still, because it is in the queer community most, we have to be extra careful (y’all know we got y’all back). It is spread to others by:

  • Someone who is infected, or as mentioned above, from animals like African rodents or primates through scratches, bites, or the meat of an infected animal.
  • Direct contact with a rash or a scab from one of the pimples or body fluids containing the virus can also spread it.
  • It is especially worrisome that it can be given from respiratory secretions (Corona, anyone?) during “prolonged, face-to-face contact and physical contact, like with kissing, cuddling, or sex (although it is not necessarily an STI; it is still not known if it can spread through semen or vaginal fluids).
  • You can even get it by touching clothes or sheets that touched an infectious rash or infectious body fluids and
  • Pregnant people can spread it to they babies through the placenta (whew, chile…literally).

It can spread soon as symptoms start all the way until the rash-pimple-blisters heal with a new layer of skin. Since it typically last 2-4 weeks, a person can be infectious for nearly a month, so let’s be extra careful.

So, like, what can we do about it?

Prevention:

First things first – I Poppa freaks all the honeys:

If you are hooking up, be careful not to touch any scabs or rashes and if you do, wash your hands for a good 20 seconds with soap, warm water, and dry them. Be careful of close contact with sick persons. Prolonged exposure to respiratory droplets and secretions are risk factors.

– I’ll eat ya brains:

DON’T share forks and knives and spoons or drink after people. Luckily for me, I grew up with a nice-nasty mama who refused to drink after or eat after anyone, even her kids, so I already know the drill. If someone picks at your plate, just let ‘em have it. Also, waterfallin, or drinking after someone while holding the bottle or cup away from your mouth and pouring it in, won’t help here. No sharing unless you pour the newly opened and undrunk out of drink into cups for others.

– I’m the realest:

There are no specific monkeypox treatments, so be informed.

The CDC is collectin data on some possible vaccines now so they can give a more definitive answer, cuz DIS TEW MUCH! Remember; monkeypox is not exactly an STI, it can be passed through sexual contact, especially prolong exposure to respiratory secretions.

Once local health systems have more guidance on vaccinations and treatments, they can start getting folk together, so keep a lookout for the monkeypox blog part 2.

Also, if you think you’ve been exposed, the FIRST thing you should do is contact a healthcare provider. If you have a primary care physician or you are near an urgent care facility, do not hesitate. GO! Pass go, collect $200, buy the property you land on, just go to a provider and get care.

As of 7/1/22, there are only 396 cases in the United States, but this number is expected to grow.

Hopefully, with this lil guide I done put together for us and some of the resources available, we can all stay safe and still have our hot gworl summer.
Live your best life, stay safe, and stay healthy.

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