Statistics Botswana (SB) launched cancer awareness month on 7th October, 2019 at its headquarters, Gaborone.
Speaking at the event, a representative from Cancer Association of Botswana, Ms Bontle Mogadi stated that in Botswana breast cancer is always commemorated in October.
“4th of February is international cancer day while November is set aside for men to be in the forefront in fighting cancer”, she said.
Ms Mogadi further said that during November men are not supposed to shave their beard to show solidarity with women in fighting breast cancer hence it is called “Movember”.
Explaining what really cancer is, Ms Mogadi who is also a cancer survivor said cancer is a result of uncontrolled growth of body cells that the human body can no longer cope with.
“Though causes of cancer are not yet known but our lifestyle also contribute to its widespread e.g. the food we eat such as fat cakes, tripe (serobe) and other oily salty stuff”, she said.
Ms Mogadi also cautioned her audience that they should avoid red meat as it takes twenty four hours to digest, adding that it is also an agent of prostate cancer.
She further said that heavy drinking and smoking (both snuff and cigarettes) also causes cancer. On a different note Ms Mogadi also cautioned uncircumcised men that they are also at the risk of penal cancer.
“Cancer can also be hereditary and breast cancer is more aggressive in men than women”, she said.
On symptoms of cancer, Ms Mogadi encouraged her audience to know their breasts very well as some of the symptoms include the following:
- Growth in size of the breasts (lumps)
- Pain on the lower back
- Menstruation that takes 5-10 days
- A smelly discharge in the breasts
“Please do regular checkups so that cancer can be detected at an early stage”, she said.
On treatment, Ms Mogadi said there are various ways of treating cancer such as doing surgery on the affected organs, chemotherapy and radiation.
In her parting shot, Ms Magadi appealed for donations so that they can help other cancer patients.
Earlier when giving a word of encouragement Mr Mogotsi Gaolape gave a sermon from the book of Philippians Chapter 1 verse 10 to 11.
“Rejoice all the time and always rejoice”, he said,
He said despite all the circumstances a person faces they should always rejoice.
Mr Mogotsi said people are not praising the lord even when they encounter problems. “Rejoice in chains” he said.