Al-Hayaat Foundation has cautioned young girls to abstain from early sex to prevent being exposed to the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), which causes

Hajia Hanatu Abubakar, the Founder and President of Al- Hayaat Foundation, said the HPV is mainly sexually transmitted, hence, staying away from sex was the most effective way of preventing the disease.

“Cervical cancer takes years to develop; it develops between 10 years and 20 years, and by the time the symptoms begin to show the cancer may have invaded deep into the cervix,” she explained.

Hajia Abubakar was addressing the media at a Cervical Cancer Sensitisation and Awareness Programme, in Accra.

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The event was held under the auspices of Al- Hayaat Foundation and supported by Achievers Ghana, a non- governmental organisation.

The programme aims at using education and mentoring to empower young women for an improved livelihood in the society.

She said, according to the Ghana Health Service, more than   3,000 Ghanaian women were diagnosed of cervical cancer yearly.

Hajia Abubakar said the risk factors of contracting cervical cancer were early sex activity and multiple sexual partners.

Therefore, the awareness programme, which would harm them with all the information on the disease, was to serve as a long-term preventive measure.

She said symptoms of cervical cancer included pain during sexual intercourse, pelvic pain, heavy virginal discharge, which may be smelly, and continuous bleeding after menopause.

She, therefore, urged all participants to disseminate the message to their colleagues at home and in their communities to promote a healthy lifestyle.

She encouraged women, especially the young, to take advantage of screening exercises as a preventive measure and as part of efforts to kick out cervical cancer in Ghana.

Ms Lois Adu Nyame, a Cytotechnologist at the School of Allied Health, University of Ghana, advised women to get prescription from a certified medical practitioner in the course of seeking medical attention so as to promote a healthy lifestyle.

She cautioned women to desist from inserting objects into their vagina to avoid infesting themselves with bacteria; stating that, “Whoever is inserting the finger or object in the vagina needs to be clean because we know there are bacteria in the air”.

Ms Adu Nyame urged women who had ever had sex to go for screening to check their status and advised young females to consult authorised persons for the appropriate treatment of genital conditions.

Source: GNA