Devonomics

Devonomics

Devonomics seeks to answer how Nigeria can and should achieve sustainable economic, social and political growth.

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Does your sex affect your health?

13 MAY 2017

Martha Sambe

Martha Sambe

Martha is a graduate of Development Economics and International Cooperation. She enjoys writing and researching topics in development. Currently, Martha works with the School of Business and Entrepreneurship at American University of Nigeria.

We assume our gender based on the physiological characteristics we possess at birth. So, a person is considered a man or woman by society because they have certain distinct features – even allowing for uncommon cases where individuals present with both male and female features

Society has structured itself around this gender dichotomy, arguably since the first humans walked the earth. And while gender roles have been fluid over time, biological differences have been more fixed; at least, we have usually thought so

While the biological difference between sexes is a preexisting condition, imposed gender roles contribute towards creating an avenue for men and women to have varying health and healthcare experiences. But just how much do these experiences vary? Quite a bit, it turns out. 

 

How nature screws us over

The most notable biological difference between men and women is in their reproductive organs. These differences alone put male and female health needs in different categories. Where the physical act of sex is concerned, though both sexes share the risk of contracting diseases, they do not equally share the responsibility for protection. Women, being more prone to infections than men, are required to manage their reproductive systems in a more careful and delicate manner.  

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