Image result for breast ironingOne of the latest offers from health resorts is taking a massage with hot stones. The heat helps the muscles to get deep relaxation and it’s easier for the masseur to manipulate them in the right way. Besides, it’s an ideal physiotherapeutic treatment for muscular pains, arthritis, backaches, depression and insomnia. Nevertheless, in other parts of the world, the use of hot stones is a common practice with appalling consequences. Just wait and see:

In several Africa countries as Cameroon, Chad, Togo and Guinea-Conakry, the parents of teenager girls practise the breast massage as a way to hinder their development and thereby, protect them against sexual abuses and premature pregnancies. In fact, especially in Cameroon, and nowadays more frequently in cities than in villages, one in four of the girls who reach their puberty before ten, suffers from breast ironing. In Muslim countries the cases are less numerous thanks to the looseness of their clothes.  

Every night, for several months or years till getting a successful result, their mothers or any woman from the neighbourhood press down and rub the daughters’ breast with a scorching stone, with sticks or any other kind of flat hot tool. In other cases, girls wear a hot cloth bandage as a different version of the same torture. Not only is the aim to stop the growing of their emerging breasts but also to modify their turgidity as a deterrent fact to the men’s interest. However, by doing so, the physical and psychological consequences are really dramatic: scars, breast infections, malignant tumours, cancer, personality disorders and so on and so forth.

As you can imagine, these are taboo and secret acts, only done within the domestic environment but totally sanctioned. And, in other respects, reminds us of the female genital mutilation (MGF) but thanks God, that's much less widespread.

© Plataforma creada por Alfonso Hinojosa - Profesor de Inglés de la E.O.I. de Santander