Knowledge and use of contraception by rural in- school adolescents in delta state, Nigeria
AbstractBackground: The high prevalence of sexual activity among adolescents leading to unwanted pregnancies and reproductive tract infections are major public health concerns in developing countries.
Objective: To determine the level of knowledge and use of contraception by in-school adolescents in randomly selected rural secondary schools in Delta State, Nigeria.
Methods: A cross -sectional questionnaire based survey of in-school adolescents from randomly selected rural secondary schools in Ethiope East Local Government Area, Delta State of Nigeria.
Results: There were 233 respondents. The mean age was 15.9 years + 1.9 SD. Thirty six point one percent of the study population had had sex. The mean age at coitache was 15.1 years + 2.1 SD. Sixty four point three percent of the adolescents that had had sex (84) took measures to avoid pregnancy. Fifty four point eight percent of them used condoms with only 31.0% using it consistently; coitus interruptus was used by 39.3% while 25.0% relied on washing their “private parts” immediately after sex. Only 49.4% of the adolescents had 2 had previous access to information on how to avoid getting pregnant. The major sources of information on avoiding pregnancy were “nurses and doctors” (17.2%), school teachers (16.7%) and elder sisters/relatives (11.2 %).
Conclusion: Over a third of the study population had had sex with poor utilization of modern contraceptive methods and most got contraceptive information from school teachers, relatives and medical and paramedical personnel. The findings suggest that school and community based contraceptive health promotion programmes are likely to be more effective than media based ones in these settings.