Human beings are social animals with an innate desire to conform to socially accepted norms and values. Over periods of time, some of these norms become standards that all members of the community are expected to adhere to. Deviance from these standards is seen as absurd, wrong, or frankly abnormal. However, many of these cultural mores have no scientific basis and, some of them actually promote behaviors with negative health consequences. This chapter examines the cultural practices of some communities in Africa and their health consequences and, explores ways to address the challenges.
Part of the book: Public Health in Developing Countries