Prevalence of Sexually Transmitted Infections and Sexual Practices of Out of School Youths in Border Town Markets in Lagos and Ogun State
AbstractPeople under the age of twenty five make up forty three percent of the world population; most young people do not have access to appropriate information about sexuality and do not know how to protect themselves from sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, or unintended pregnancy. Universal access to reproductive health education and services are important in achieving the millennium development goals. A cross sectional study was carried out among youths working in two border town markets to determine the prevalence sexually transmitted infections and their sexual practices. Calculated minimum sample size of 240 was used, data was collected with pretested interviewer administered questionnaire using systematic random sampling method. Analysis was done with Epi info version 3.5.1, test of association was carried out using chi square at p value < 0.05. The mean age was 19.72+3.06, majority were females and overall 70% (165) of the respondents had stopped schooling. Among the females, 8.4% stopped schooling because they got pregnant. Only 4.2% knew the meaning of safer sex, more than half of the respondents have had sex in the past, by 19years of age about 80% were sexually experienced, among the sexually experienced youths 18.3% had symptomatic STIs in the past. For youths that were currently sexually active, 42.9% had sex with casual partners, 22.4% were consistent condom users while one third had multiple sex partners. Education was a significant predictor of condom use and receiving sexuality education while males were more likely to have multiple partners and symptomatic STIs was commoner among respondents with multiple partners. The high prevalence of symptomatic STIs among the youths in border markets in this study was not surprising in view of the poor practice of safer sex and early age of sexual debut. There is need for community based outreach sexuality education based education and services targeted at adolescents and young people, family life education curriculum should be implemented in all secondary schools.
Nigerian Medical Practitioner Vol. 62 No 5-6, 2012