PN file photo

Palaweño women are urged to listen to their bodies and engage in health-seeking behaviors, particularly in reproductive health, according to the Roots of Health (ROH).

Any symptoms felt, said Aika Pagusara, ROH youth advocacy manager, should not be ignored and should be discussed with medical professionals.

The reminder from ROH is part of the nation’s celebration of International Women’s Month.

Sexually active women, she explained, should have pap smears which they can perform at ROH. Their organization will cover the collecting of the specimen, so women will just have to pay for the laboratory test.

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“Kung meron tayong nararamdaman lalo na sa private areas natin o sa ari natin dapat kumonsulta agad tayo sa doctor o midwife o kung meron tayong nurse na pwede natin makausap. Huwag natin ipagsawalang-bahala, kasi madalas pinagsasawalang-bahala natin siya tapos lumalala siya. Iyon ang parati namin sinasabi, makinig tayo sa katawan natin kung anong nararamdaman natin sa katawan lalo na sa reproductive health na aspeto,” she said.

She also stressed that women should not be ashamed of asking for whatever they need for their bodies, and that their goal in working with the community and women is to promote health-seeking behavior.

Pagusara believes it will also assist women in determining what will be beneficial to them in maintaining healthy bodies.

“Huwag mahiyang magtanong— given naman talaga na nahihiya sila kasi ito ay kultura natin ay taboo, dapat hindi pinag-uusapan. Dapat tanggalin na natin ‘yong kaisipan kasi kapag mahihiya lang tayo nang mahihiya, walang mangyayari sa atin lalo na kapag kalusugan na ang pinag-uusapan,” she said.

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is one of the senior reporters of Palawan News. She covers agriculture, business, and different feature stories. Her interests are collecting empty bottles, aesthetic earrings, and anything that is color yellow.