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Substance abuse, also known as drug abuse, is a patterned use of a substance (drug) in which the user consumes the substance in amounts or method which are harmful to themselves or the other. It has been deduced in the course of this study. Drug existence is all most as old as a man. Substance that affects behavior has been known long; even the Stone Age man might have been familiar with drug such as opium, hashish and cocaine.
The objective of this study was to access the substance abused among the students of College of Heath Sciences and Technology Ijero Ekiti. Also to access the possible causes of substance abuse, level of awareness of substances abuse, attitude of students toward substance abuse, then to access possible effect or substance abuse among students of the College.
The study was a cross sectional one, a multi stage sampling techniques was employed in selecting respondent for the study. A semi structured interviewer administered questionnaire was designed to obtain the demographic characteristic, awareness, knowledge and reason for involving in substance abuse and effect of substance abuse and effect of substance abuse on the respondent .The study was carried out on 220 students of the College.
Essentially, nearly all most all student have tried one substance or the other from finding, 220(100%) of the respondent had knowledge about substance abuse. The process of gathering information for this work is time consuming, head racking. A lot of effort was put into the collection of information, which leads to huge expenses.
In conclusion, the research work is to clear misconception, as well as to curb, control or reduce substance abuse among student. To achieve this government should involve in Drug information, and encourage voluntary organization should be ready to work in hand with drug enforcement agents to reduce the level of abuse in our society
Title page i
Table of content viii
List of Tables
1.1 Background of study 4
1.2 Statement of problem 9
1.3 Justification of the study 14
1.4 Objective of the study 16
1.4.1Main objective 16
1.4.2 Specific objectives 16
1.5 Scope of the study 16
1.6 Significance of the study 16
2.0 Literature Review 18
2.1 Overview of substance abuse 18
2.2 Theories of substance abuse 22
2.3 Sources of substance commonly abused 24
2.4 Causes of substance abuse among students 26
2.5 Signs and symptoms of substance abuse 28
2.6 Types of substance commonly abused 29
2.7 Level of substance abuse 32
2.8 Consequence of substance abuse 33
3.0 Methodology 38
3.1 Description of study 38
3.2 Advocacy, community penetration 39
3.3 Study Population 39
3,4 Inclusion criteria 39
3.5 Exclusion criteria 40
3.6 Study consent 40
3.7 Study design 40
3.8 Sample size determination 40
3.8.1 Calculations 41
3.9 Sampling technique 42
3.10 Data Collection 53
3.11 Data processing and analysis 53
4.0 Results 54
SECTION A: Socio-demographic characteristics of respondents 54
SECTION B: Knowledge of substance abuse 56
SECTION C: Level of substance abuse 58
SECTION D: Consequences of substance abuse 60
5.0 Discussion 69
6.0 Conclusion 72
6.1 Recommendation 72
Appendix I 80
Appendix II 83
Since the early times, medicinal plants have been used in healing and preventing diseases. The chronic use of substance(s) can cause some irreversible physical and psychological development 1. The use of substance could be beneficial or harmful depending on how it is been used. Substance(s) could bring about a change in the biological function of living organism through its chemical composition 4. It can also modify perception, cognition, mood, behaviour, and general body function 9. They could thus be considered as chemical modifiers of the living tissues that could bring about psychological and behavioural changes 11. The use and abuse of substance(s) by youths have become one of the most disturbing health related phenomena in society; several youths have become insane, irresponsible and liability to the society.
Substance(s) can be used for treatment or prevention of disease in man or animals; it also alters the body function, either positively or negatively, depending on the body composition of the user, type of substance(s) used, dose used, or combination with other substance(s) at the same time 3. NAFDAC explains the term substance abuse as the excessive and persistent usage of a substance without regard to the medically or culturally accepted patterns. It could also be viewed as the use of substance(s) to the extent that it interferes with the health and social function of an individual 8. In essence, substance abuse may be defined as the arbitrary over dependence or misuse of substance(s) with or without prior medical diagnosis from qualified health practitioners. Substance abuse can plainly be seen as the recurrent use of illegal substance(s) or misuse of the legal ones.
Substance abusers who exhibit symptoms of stress, anxiety, depression, behavioural changes, fatigue, and loss of appetite should be treated by medical experts and counsellors. Since the beginning of history, humans have searched for substances that would sustain and protect them and also act on the nervous system to produce pleasurable sensations 10. Drugs are believed to provide pleasure because they give inner peace and satisfaction, relax the muscles and heighten sensation 2. Students in Nigeria experiment with drugs without knowing which drug to take, when to take it and how to take it7, and presently, risky alcohol use among students has become a serious public health issue in Nigeria 6.
The campus environment is free and young people often use substance to reassure themselves that they are able to express their freedom, some for the first time in their lives, which is a part of normal adolescent processes and perception of drugs as socially acceptable are all denominators of alcohol expectancy. Many adolescents use alcohol experimentally, sometimes frequently and sometimes consuming multiple drinks per occasion, without engaging in other problem behaviour’s or experiencing immediate negative consequences 3. It is a popular belief and equally a strong conviction among higher education students that the campus is a place of freedom and the perceived freedom ranges from academic to social, relationship, religious, and speech. The use of substance is most prominent in tertiary institutions where we have academic freedom and students do things at their own free will. Youths who are exposed to or who observe adults who drink and smoke may want to experiment to see how it feels 10. If intervention is not quickly provided, this may signal the beginning of drug use and subsequently substance abuse and dependence.
A major factor in the use of substance by adolescents is concerned with sensation seeking and risk-taking tendencies and these tendencies are part of the normal developmental process for young people 10. Youths or college students are in the stage of their lives where they experiment and look for new experiences, they want to try things out for themselves rather than relying on information provided by others. This sets them up to be vulnerable to the temptation to experiment with drugs/substance especially psychoactive ones. Many college students use legal drugs such as caffeine, nicotine or alcohol without much thought because their use is socially acceptable. The use of tobacco, alcohol, stimulants and other substances is a worldwide phenomenon. Youths get “high” from abusing substances such as inhalants, alcohol and cannabis among others3.
The negative consequences of substance abuse on the well-being of Nigerian youths in all ramifications, has necessitated a clarion call for the Nigerian society to live up to it responsibility. Presently, youths vividly express high level of morally bankruptcy, decadent and helplessness detrimental to their growth and national development 1. The Nigerian youths, considering the high level of competitiveness among nations of the world due to globalization are supposed to serve as the nexus of development and technological advancement. However, this expectation could be a mirage if the Nigerian youths with their challenge of drug abuse are not helped, re-orientated, revitalized and collectively salvaged together in order to prevent the total degeneration and loss of our societal values and ideals and a potential human capital developmental disaster. This is premised on the fact that the menace of substance abuse has eaten very deep into the fabrics of our society 5. Majority of the Nigerian youths ignorantly without being aware of the consequences depend on one form of drug or the other for their various daily activities – social, educational, political, moral, etc. However, the consequences of substance abuse are so devastating and very shameful to the extent that both national and international organizations are also worried about the spread of this scourge among the Nigerian youths resulting to social violence among youths, armed robbery, mental disorders, 419 syndrome, social miscreants (Area boys and girls), school dropout, lawlessness, lack of respect for elders, rape, and many more of the social evils 9.
Therefore, the growing concern is that youths in Nigeria are highly involved in substance abuse at an alarming rate. For young people, substance abuse interferes with their cognitive and emotional development, increases the chance of accidental injury and death, and magnifies the likelihood of drug dependency. Substance abuse is a major gateway to crime and this undermine development by eroding social and human capital development. This degrades quality of life and has negative impact on the functioning and productive ability of youths 14.
This brings to bear the fact that though substance abuse is a major public health problem all over the world 11. The use and abuse of substance have become one of the most disturbing health related phenomena in Nigeria and other parts of the world. It could also be viewed as the use of a drug to the extent that it interferes with the health and social function of an individual. Drug abuse is defined as the non-medical use of a drug that interferes with a healthy and productive life 13. Drug abuse is the excessive, maladaptive or addictive use of drugs for non-medical purpose 12. It can also be viewed as the unlawful overdose in the use of substance.
Majority of Nigerian youths ignorantly depend on one form of substance or the other for their various daily activities – social, educational, political, moral etc. Such drugs include: Tobacco, Indian hemp, cocaine, morphine, Heroine, Alcohol, ephedrine, Madras, Caffeine, Glue, Barbiturates, Amphetamines, etc.6 in their studies on perception of Drug Abuse amongst Nigerian undergraduates identified dependence and addiction as one of the major consequence of drug abuse, characterized by compulsive drug craving seeking behaviours that persist even in the face of negative consequences. These changes are maladaptive and inappropriate to the social or environmental setting and could place the individual at risk of harm. In view of this context therefore, drug use among young people should be a matter of concern to all Nigerians, especially the government, parents, school heads, the leaders of religious groups and other NGO’s 7.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The consumption of substance(s) such as alcohol, amphetamine, cannabis, marijuana, caffeine, tobacco among others are now been taken frequently in large quantities by youths as they constitute the high risk of drug abusers. Today more youths are becoming drug dependent; those who are mainly from well-to-do homes are increasingly identified with the big boy 6.
The history of using mind-altering substance in excess, or in a manner disapproved by society, is as old as the human race. Fermented beverages were probably used by prehistoric humans, who depicted their effects on cave walls. Opium and marijuana have been in worldwide use for centuries and the Indians of South America recognized the stimulant properties of the coca plant long before the Spanish conquest. It is stated that all naturally occurring sedatives, narcotics, euphoriants, hallucinogens and excitants were discovered thousands of years back 8.
Each society develops rules and guidelines for the use of substance. Although the Bible frequently mentions wine in approving terms, it warns against drunkenness. In some cultures, men may drink fermented beverages to intoxication; women and children who do so may be punished. Alcohol use is widely accepted in western society, but its use is prohibited and condemned in Islamic cultures. In the eastern world, opium was once a widely accepted recreational drug. In the United State and England, it was available on grocery store shelves until the late nineteenth century Cocaine, the ingredient that was responsible about 100 years ago for making Coca-Cola “the pause that refreshes” is now an illegal drug in the United States. In the last decade or so, the growing rate of substance abuse has been causing a lot of concern in schools, government circles and the society at large. Substance abuse is not limited to any social and economic group neither is it limited to a particular sex or religion. Investigation into dimensions of this phenomenon has become necessary for it has become a cankerworm amongst youths especially students in many institutions in Nigeria.19.
Drug is any chemical substance which when taken into a body organism modify one or more of its functions. In accordance with a definition substance such as alcohol, heroin and caffeine are drugs because these substances bring about modifications in behaviour by influencing co-ordination of the central Nervous System and sometime change the functions of the cell. Any chemical substances other than food that affects living organisms are drugs. Even common plants and animal preparations that are not pharmaceutical products but made for corrective purposes are drugs. To this group belong herbs, plants exudates latex, juice powder.3
The current trend of indiscipline among students and Nigerian youths in general has become so rampant that successive governments have sought for ways of combating its problems as a result of this unwholesome trend, school Boards, University Communities and Non-governmental Organization (NGOS) such as Youth Clubs, Philanthropic Organizations, Federal and State Governments and their parastatals, particularly the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have organized programmes to create awareness about the dangers of drugs and substance abuse18.
Major-General Mohammed Buhari’s regime (1983) for example, sought for adequate ways to eradicate social slogan popularly known as “War Against Indiscipline” (WAI). Some of the societal ills addresses were: 11
Similarly the Federal Ministry of Health (FMH) with the World Health Organization (WHO) later joined the International Council on Alcoholism and Addiction (ICAA) to curb drug addiction. Since then serious efforts have been made to conduct researches on the problems of drug abuse and the way of combating them by the NDLEA.This notwithstanding, alcohol, and cannabis still remain the most common substances of abuse in Africa. Existing literature on alcohol consumption among adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa suggests that a substantial proportion of adolescents have consumed or currently consume alcohol. Two studies conducted among students and among nationally representative samples of in and out of school youths found that the prevalence of lifetime alcohol use was approximately 25%.Substance misuse is a growing problem in Nigeria, as in many developing countries. Alcohol and cannabis are the most frequent substances of abuse 18.
The World Health Organization (WHO (2006) also defined drug abuse as a “state” of periodic or chronic intoxication, detrimental to the individual and to the society, produced by the repeated consumption of a drug (natural or synthetic). Drug abuse patterns include all aspect of drug usage by the youths ranging from how much, how often and what sort of drugs, where who, with, what circumstances and so on 18.
The analysis of contemporary social problem has consistently proved more and more controversial. There is a growing public concern in our country, Nigeria, about involvement of adolescents and young adult in drug abuse, which is defined as the non–medical use of substances by human beings that may modify one or more of its functions and may impair an individual ability to function effectively and may result in social physical or emotional harm. While it is universally accepted that drugs can be of tremendous benefit to man and society, it is also acknowledged that inappropriate use of drugs can be harmful to man .The personal, social and public health problems associated with psychoactive substance use, have continued to arouse worldwide interest and concern. Various reports and researches conducted have illustrated this phenomenon 15. Drugs/substance abuse is a worldwide hazard with dangerous complications that affect many countries around the globe, Nigeria inclusive. The problem varies from place to place.
The African seminar on problems of drug dependence held in Lagos, Nigeria declared that “Drug abuse and dependence producing substances are widely prevalent in African countries have continue to increase. These problems affect the individual, the family and the society in general. Substance abuse which was originally conceived as the problem of a selected few is today becoming a problem of a sizeable proportion of the world population 17. The problem is so grave that it has extended beyond the usual characteristic profile of abusers being male, adult, and urban-based to now include females, youngsters and those who live in rural areas. Its economic effect is so devastating that it is estimated that the annual retail cost of psychotropic substances by prescription is over two billion naira while the alcoholic industry which produces over five billion gallons of alcoholic beverages annually generate more than four billion naira from sales to a consumer population of about 30-35 million people20. Illicit Drug traffic known to generate huge profit and fortune and that is one reason why it has been very difficult to combat the drug traffic in spite of several laws that have been promulgated. For instance, it has been estimated that the sum of $400billion is the turnover of illicit drug industry, which is equivalent of approximately 8%of total international trade and therefore larger than the trade in iron steel, motor vehicle, textile, tourism20.
Substance abuse and other associated problems constitute a major threat to the survival and effective functioning of human societies, lives are lost daily through addiction and activities of addicts. A significant number of deaths from accidents and violent crimes have been traced to the activities of persons under the influence of drugs. Treatment facilities nationwide are now gradually being over burden with drug-related problems and cases. The need to prevent drug abuse among the general population and by the growing generation of Nigeria thus becomes imperatives. Nigeria which once served only as trans-shipment route for drugs soon became a “consumer” country when it was observed that the increasing incidence of drug abuse among students is a contributory factor in the ugly confrontation between school administrators and students12.
The problem of substance abuse poses a far greater health hazard than most imagine. Psychoactive drugs and substances have the primary effect on the mind such as altering mood, feelings, perceptions and behaviors. These drugs are usually taken to give insulation from the real world and its difficulties. This is accompanied by the feeling that varies according to the drugs used. This is common to those whose personality development is insufficient to enable them cope with the normal life15. One of the hazards of using of drugs/substance to alter mood and feeling is that some individuals eventually develop dependent on the drug. They have diminished flexibility in terms of their behavior toward a particular drug or substance. They became dependent on the drug for their feeling well being. The intensity of this need or dependent may vary from mild desire to a craving or compulsion to use the drug/substance and when the availability of the drug is uncertain they may exhibit a pre-occupation with its procurements9. In extreme form, their behavior exhibits the characteristics of a chronic relapsing disorder, this is a state referred to as “addiction or dependence”. The substances commonly abused include tobacco, alcohol, stimulants like caffeine, nicotine, cannabinoids, amphetamine, volatile solvents like glue, petrol, diethyl ether, chloroform correction fluid, psychotropic medicines such as sedatives, anxiolytics, hypnotics etc. Most of the drugs being abused are beneficial, but also have devastating after effects such as psychosis, paranoid schizophrenia, and chronic addiction with all the implications of mental and physical dependency13. Some of the social and environmental contributory factors associated with substance/drug abuse include living away from home, relaxed parental control, alienation from family, early exposure to drugs, peer influence, easy access to the drugs and their availability etc.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The population of students in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions has increased tremendously in recent time’s .Statistical data shows that about one million five hundred thousand students are enrolled in more than 344 institutions in the country. Survey has revealed that Nigeria has about 63 Colleges of education, 50 polytechnics, 61 Monotechnics, 70 professional institutions which includes (school of Nursing, colleges of health technology, vocational institutes and the rest…) Figures in the last few years shows that Nigeria has over 100 universities altogether 33% accounts for the federal university while 44% accounts for the state university and 23% accounts for the private university9.
The Nigerian youths constitutes (70%) of the entire population which is (124.95million) out of (178.5million) the general population and about (43%) of this population are affected with substance abuse and (28%) are students of various institutions.Globally, there were about 190 million substance abusers. Out of these substance abusers, around 40 million serious illnesses or injuries were identified each year; the trend is increasing as period goes. Recent trends indicate that the use of substances have dramatically increased particularly to claim the lives of 15 million people annually6. In recent years, the Federal government has approved billions of naira to drug enforcement agency (NDLEA) in collaboration with World Health Organization (W H O) to establish and maintain rehabilitation centres to cater for drug abusers that has been affected psychologically and has been mentally derailed11.
Consequently, about 14% out of the 28% of the students that are involved in substances abuse usually becomes mentally derailed and they undergo rehabilitation and the remaining percentage of people exhibit deviant characters. Statistical analysis conducted by the W.H.O shows that a total of 15% deaths that can be traced to substance abuse are recorded annually 7% also accounted for youths6.
Today, drug misuse and abuse is a major problem worldwide. Its extent and characteristics however vary from region to region although trends among the youths especially have begun to converge over these recent years. The most commonly used and abused substance is cannabis and alcohol. Alcohol and other related problems are becoming more a public health concern. The misuse of alcohol represents one of the leading causes of preventable death, illness and injury. Other common substances are inhalants, heroine and cocaine. This abuse is believed to be associated with increasing amounts consumed, frequency of use and groups involved7.
The substance abuse problem in Nigeria is no different from other countries though there may be variations in the magnitude of the problem. It is difficult to say when it actually became a problem in Nigeria but its existence according to educated guesses could be traced as far back as the 1960s’ after independence. Currently, use and abuse of drugs have expanded to include the youths10. This gives evidence that the people mostly affected are the young and strong who can contribute effectively to the economy of the country. Increasing youth’s involvement in substance use and abuse is a major threat to national development, family stability and social security of the country.
To address these problems, various programs in Nigeria both official and unofficial have made several efforts towards curbing the menace of drug abuse (cigarette and hard drugs) of which the youths are the most gullible victims. Numbers of studies have also been carried out among in-school or out -of -school youths to gas their baseline information about the extent of the problem with respect to specific drugs such as tobacco. There is however the need to have information on the other commonly abused substances as well. This is because any sustained program that will bring interactions between the youths and their educators to allow opportunities for creating greater understanding of drug abuse and its social repercussions. Obviously a locally designed study aimed at vividly describing the extent of the problem on a broader scale looking at in school and out of school youths.6
Besides, the World Health Organization (WHO) through its Regional Strategy for Mental
Health, aims at prevention and control of mental health and substance abuse disorders. It has a mandate to assist countries in assessing the magnitude of the problem to fill in gaps in knowledge, as well as develop epidemiological data for developing policies and prevention programs. The Nigeria Health Service has interest in taking advantage of this mandate so that the information generated through a youths’ focused study could direct the design of evidenced-based prevention programs to address the problem13.
Substance abuse is injurious to the students, it increases crime rates, enhances the spread of disease like AIDS, leads to loss of sanity, and death. Some students are involved in the use of illicit substance(s) because they want to reduce the peer pressure around them. Substance abuse among students in Nigeria in the contemporary time has become one issue that cast a gloomy shadow to the entire Nigerian society especially among students. Substance abuse and chemical dependency among young people has been a social problem and continues to be one of the most significant medical, social and economic problems facing mankind22. The prevalence of alcohol use on college campuses is classified as a “Major public health concern”20. The height of drug trafficking in Nigeria was witnessed in 1985 under the military regime. During this period, it was mostly the undergraduates that were caught and the first to be executed for drug offences under the “special tribunal (Miscellaneous Offences) Degree No. 20 of 1984. However, the abuse of substance is not only limited to the students as alien phenomenon is to distort its significance.
Nevertheless, the usage of substance either by students or other members of the larger society in all its ramifications appears to be a social problem. This problem is widely spread and it affect all and sundry. In other words, this wide spread use and abuse entice people from all walks of life and beyond the human destruction caused by drug dependence is the damage to traditional values and lifestyles. Studies have also shown that drug abuse wrecks individual, shatter families and weakens entire society with its burden of economic loses, health cost and increased lawlessness and crime. Also, substance abuse seems to undermine the ability of students to learn. Substance abuse also appears to contradict our values of physical wellbeing .To add to this, drug abuse may entail a lot of social problems ranging from lateness to lectures, family neglect, deviance behaviours, involvement in crime16. In terms of economic cost, it includes the more money required to deal with the undesirable effects of the drug abuse, the less money for services and programmes that enhances the quality of life13.
Addressing the problem of substance abuse among adolescents in the college setting is a very specialized need with unique issues that demand “high quality and effective treatment‟ approaches that may be different to those used with other substance abuse populations or adolescents in general. Tertiary institutions as training institutions are different from secondary or high schools in structure, freedom, accountability, expectations and rules. As described earlier, campus environment is an adult world, with doors open to teenagers.
High rates of alcohol use are also associated with risky sexual behaviour among students. In a Nigerian study it reported that over 97,000 students are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or alcohol abuse while several others reported being too intoxicated to know whether or not they consented to having sex6. The use and abuse of alcohol has implications on the health status of students in schools, for instance, it is the cause of many social and health problems, such as increase in crime rate and high proportion of accidental injury.
Many social, economic and political factors have contributed to the global spread of psychoactive substance. In the nineteenth century drugs tended to only be available where they were produced, or very close to the source of production. However, the growth of transportation, tourism and communications in the twentieth century has made it possible to transport goods and people quickly to any part of the world. Drugs too, are being transported to distant places. Given the economic rewards of producing and transporting drugs, it is not surprising that they are available almost all over the world. It has been estimated that the illegal market for drugs is worth $100 to $500 billion worldwide. These figures are of course more than estimates, but even at the lower level represent a substantial and lucrative market7.
Global trends in drug production, transportation and consumption are difficult to describe and assess because of the complexities of the issues involved and the lack of accurate information on what are clandestine activities. Drugs are being produced in increasing numbers, making them more readily available through both legal and illicit channels. A drug culture life style with its own jargon support and maintains its members in their drug-seeking behaviour and helps to make the illicit market profitable. There has been a sizeable increase in the production and use of illicit drugs throughout the world. The United Nations International Drug Control Programmes estimate that the global production of coca leaf has more than doubled and that of opium poppies more than tripled since 198513. Moreover, new forms of existing drugs e.g. smoke able “crack” cocaine, changes in the modes of administering these drugs e.g. transitions from opium smoking to heroin injection in South East, Asia and one introduction and proliferation of now synthetic drugs e.g. amphetamine-type stimulants and so called designer drugs all create new or exacerbate existing substances related problems. Of particular importance is the fact that drug injection has become a major transmission route for HIV of scientific and public health efforts to address these new issues, significant advances in drug abuse epidemiological research methods have been achieved. These advances have included improved techniques to assess the extent of drug related behaviours and problems, but also the introduction and development of methods which aim to understand behaviour as much as measure them. Substance abuse is a major social and public health problem. The abuse of one drug-alcohol-currently is one of the major causes of death in the United Sates, ranking only behind coronary diseases and cancer. Substance abuse cost the American economy billions of dollars a year9.
To this end and judging from the problems outlined earlier, this research aims at assessing the level of substance abuse among students of College of Health Science and Technology Ijero Ekiti State.
The importance of this study is to provide resource materials for many that want to have deeper knowledge about the cause, effect and control of drug abuse. This research work will encourage organizations like NAFDAC, NDLEA, health organizations like WHO. and government parastatals to establish drug rehabilitation center to help victims of drug abuse more so the significant of this study is to outline its health implication amongst students which will be centered on identifying the cause of drug abuse among student, reducing the hazard of drug abuse to a minimum level, reducing the incidence of rape among students, and also to alert the government on how to control the abuse of drug since the sort term and long term effect are disastrous.
Recent studies show that the rate of juvenile delinquencies in Nigeria has drastically increased due to the indiscriminate use of drug among youths of Nigeria. Crimes such as Armed robbery, rape, theft, political thuggery, homeless children, drop out, killings e.t.c.6
While the use of tobacco by the general population has decreased over the last several decades, students’ use of tobacco remains widespread9. The menace of drug use is not limited to Nigeria. The World Drug Report (2005) states that five percent of the world’s population, aged 15-64, had abused drugs at least once in 2003. Some crimes committed under the influence of substances include murder, rape, robbery, homicide, destruction of lives and properties, violation of traffic regulations leading to accidents, affecting the user and or the people of the society in general.
The problem of drug abuse among youths in Nigeria has a unique slant because Nigerian tertiary institutions admit students who are still in mid-adolescence. The minimum age of entry into Nigerian institution is 16 years33, which lowers the average age of students in tertiary institutions. Misconduct either appears or escalates in adolescence. Rates of substance use are higher in adolescence than during childhood22. This is possibly due to the fact that in the second decade of life, young people encounter a rapidly widening world of opportunity, accompanied by rapid changes in all areas of their lives.
This rapid growth or change occurs in various areas such as physical changes (development of secondary sexual characteristics of pubic hair, weight gain, deepening of the voice, fullness of the breast, etc), cognitive development (the movement from concrete to abstract thought processes.), and psychosocial development (identity formation and accompanying dilemmas in the struggle for independence on the way to adulthood).The widening world and rapid changes expose adolescents to serious risks before they have adequate information, skills and experience to avoid or counteract them19. One of such risks is the exposure to substance abuse which becomes one of the factors that influences the development of the burden of disease. The World Health Organization (WHO) also reported that one third of the disease burdens of adults can be associated with behaviors’ that began in adolescence. It is on this background that researchers set out to establish prevalence of substance abuse among students in tertiary Schools. This particular research work will attempt to assess the level of substance abuse, and the research findings may contribute towards providing information assessing the level of substance abuse among youths. The problem of drug abuse being of public health importance needs to be effectively and efficiently control, to greatly reduce the menace and consequences such as crimes and cultism. College of Health Science and Technology is highly cosmopolitan with students admitted from all over Nigeria. It has been in one forefront in the training of high and middle level manpower for the health sector of the nation’s economy, therefore the project will have a great impact on many youths and the nation in general2.
1.4 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
1.4.1 MAIN OBJECTIVES
The main objective of this study is to assess the level of substance abuse among the students of College of Health Sciences and Technology.
1.4.2 SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES
1.5 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study was conducted among students of College of Health Science and Technology in Ijero Ekiti
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The need to assess the level of substance abuse among College of health student in Ijero Ekiti is to;
This study will provide resource materials for many that want to have deeper knowledge about the causes, risk, consequences and level of substance abuse among students.