May 2023 Menstrual Day Focus For Uganda Should Be On Reproductive Health
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May 2023 Menstrual Day Focus For Uganda Should Be On Reproductive Health

United Nations Population Fund in 2021 reported in its study that Uganda registered 354,736 teenage pregnancies’ in 2020. Between January and September 2021, 290,219 more were added to the negative statistics. It was further noted that this meant there were 32,000 cases recorded by month.

Meanwhile the World Health Organization, has currently placed a red flag on the growing HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in Uganda; and teenage are part and a parcel of this threat.

Biology shows menstruation to be a critical time when a girl or woman has a release of reproductive hormones that not only trigger sexual desires but the highest probability of a girl or woman conceiving. The ovulation period is particularly noted to be shrouded in a spike of libido while the womb warms up to carrying a baby. Such realities should be crucial to the menstrual health campaign in which girls and boys should be brought to the knowledge of stages in their development that could lead to a sexually transmitted disease or unwanted pregnancy.

African tradition age set systems had an inbuilt mechanism to groom boys and girls domestically, economically but also reproductively. There is a missing link in todays ever modernizing world. And what is left is parents relying on teachers to inform their children about this critical stage. This is not adequately done leading to alot of reproductive accidents and incidents.

The Ministry of Education and Sports has in the past years been working on integrating sex education into schools but with limitations. However, Uganda ought to have more institutions involved in this menstrual discourse with regard to reproductive health and this should also extend to the boy child’s wet dreams and reproductive changes.

Avenues such as family, churches and schools all need to be rebooted and tailored to give a positive sex education message, that will help children, teenagers and women make informed decisions.