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Sexual behaviour, contraception and fertility among in-school adolescents in Ikenne local government, South-Western Nigeria

AA Salako
CA Iyaniwura
OA Jeminusi
R Sofowora


A cross- sectional study was conducted among in-school adolescents in six secondary schools in the health districts of Ikenne Local Government to assess the sexual behaviour, contraception and fertility experiences of the adolescents between the months of May and November 2002.Relevant information was collected from 1140 in-school adolescents with the aid of pre-tested, structured, self-administered questionnaires, selected by using multistage and stratified random sampling techniques Information sought from the questionnaires included socio-demographic characteristics of the respondents, parental background, their sexual behaviour, knowledge and use of contraception, human development, pregnancy and fertility experiences, information on sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV/AIDS. During the same period, twelve (12) Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) sessions were conducted using an FGD Guide in the selected schools to highlight differences in opinions of students and also to highlight identification of the group consensus. The mean ages at first intercourse were 13.9 ± 2.8 years and 14.8 ± 2.4years for males and females respectively. Boys initiated sex earlier than girls. This difference was found to be statistically significant (p<0.05). Sexual intercourse had been experienced by 28.5% of the adolescent students, significantly more males (37.6%) than females (20.4%)The school adolescents that responded as being married were.4.5%(26males, 23 females) of the respondents. Knowledge on contraception was 36.9% and 22.1% for male and female students respectively, more males than females had knowledge of contraception in a significant proportion, apparently due to increase awareness of the male condom among males. Current use of contraception was equally low, and was found to be 10.9% and 6.0% for males and females respectively. The reasons for non-use were mainly that of non-availability (22.3%), cost (11.8%) negative attitude towards contraception due to societal disapproval (33.2%) and lack of knowledge of how to use them (21.3%). The proportion of adolescents that had ever experienced symptoms associated with Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) was 26.8%. Multiple factors were found to be responsible for the deplorable reproductive health situation of the adolescents in this community. The need for provision of sexuality and life planning education in schools including the provision of Youth friendly health services in the community were highlighted.

Keywords: adolescents, sexual behaviour, sexuality and life planning education

Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice Vol. 9(1) 2006: 26-36

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eISSN: 2229-7731
print ISSN: 1119-3077