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Rise In Shisha Smoking Among Ghanaian Girls A Cause For Worry   
 
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16-Aug-2019  
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A Senior Public Health Specialist and Programme Manager for Non-Communicable Diseases at the Ghana Health Service, Dr Dennis Asare, has thrown a word of caution to the Ghanaian youth, with focus on the female population to desist from smoking shisha as it puts them at risk of contracting diseases such as breast cancer.

He was speaking at the second annual general meeting of the Breast Society of Ghana, held at the Ghana Medical Association Auditorium in Accra on Friday.

He noted that, whiles cigarette smoking is not a common practice among Ghanaians as compared to people in western countries, the taste for shisha is gradually picking up especially with the youth.

Dr. Asare indicated that contrary to the notion of shisha being safer than a cigarette, the amount of nicotine and tobacco contained in the former is higher than in the latter. This the Public Health Specialist says, puts shisha smokers at a higher risk of contracting cancer-related diseases with women standing the potential of contracting breast cancer.

“You don’t normally see woman smoking cigarette, it’s not common in Ghana. But shisha seems to be changing that, and there is a false impression that shisha doesn’t contain tobacco, but that is not true, it has even more tobacco than cigarette,” he said.

On what the associated risks of this trend are Dr Asare said “when a person sits and smokes shisha for an hour, she is taking the equivalent of several sticks of tobacco, and tobacco is a risk for several cancers including breast cancer. So that is something that we are concerned about and we need to make sure that people understand this and they don’t take up smoking shisha,” he added.

The Breast Society Ghana, is a group made up of physicians, medical, nursing and allied health professionals involved in breast disease management and research as well as companies, organizations, educational institutions and individuals who organize breast disease-related activities and promote funding for patients’ treatment, screening and awareness on breast-related diseases.

The vision of the group is to provide a platform for coordinated allied health and social interventions for improving breast cancer awareness, treatment and survival. The group also aims to carry out breast cancer advocacy for management in terms of awareness and early detection.

The theme for this year’s annual general meeting was: ’Breast Diseases-Closing the gap Between Patients, Health Workers and Scientists’.
 
 
Source: Ghanaweb
 
 

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