The Prevalence Of Drug Abuse Among Youths In Nigeria.

Topic: The prevalence of drug abuse among youths in Nigeria. By

Oso Oyindamola Oluwabukola Pad/2018/1088

Drug abuse can be define as the excessive, maladaptive, or addictive use of drugs for non medical purposes despite social, psychological, and physical problems that may arise from such use. Abused substances include such agents as anabolic steroids, which are used by some athletes to accelerate muscular development and increase strength and which can cause heart disease, liver damage, and other physical problems. Causes and risk factor play a significant role in understanding the development of drug abuse among youths. Several factors that contribute to the initiation and progressive of drug abuse including societal influence: Media and advertising : The media, including movies, television shows and advertisment, often portray drug consumption as glamorous fun and a social norms.

Family Dynamics: parental attitude and behaviors: parental attitude and behaviors towards alcohol play a crucial role in shaping youth’s drug useage. Parent who exhibit positive attitude towards drug useage or engage in problematic drug useage themselves may inadvertently normalize or model such behavior for their children.
Monitoring and parental involvement: Lack of parental monitoring or involvement can increase the risk of drug useage among youths. When parents are less aware of their children’s activities or fail to establish clear rules and expectations regarding drug, youth may be more likely to engage in such behavior.

Peer group and influence : friends and peer who engage in smoking or taking other dangerous substance can influence young individuals to initiate or escalate the behavior.

Consequences of Drug Abuse

  1. Physical Health consequences: Drug Abuse can lead to liver diseases include fatty liver. These conditions can have severe long term consequences including liver failure
    Weakened immune system: Drug Abuse weakens the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to infection and diseases

2) Mental health implication: This is associated with an increased risk of mental health disorder, including depression, biopolar disorder, and substances induced mood disorder.
Suicidal Behavior: This has a significant risk factor for suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and completed suicides among youths. The presence of drugs further impairs judgement and increases impulsive behavior.

3) Academic performance : Drug abuse can negatively impact cognitive abilities including memory, attention, problem solving skills. This can result in difficulties with academic performance and learning.
Increased absenteeism : student who abuse drug are more likely to have higher rate of absenteeism , poor school attendance, and increased risk of dropping out of school

There are some preventive strategies to curb Drug abuse

1) school based Prevention program : Education and awareness: school can implant comprehensive education program that provide accurate information about the risk and consequences of drugs. These programs aim to increase awareness and knowledge, promote responsible, decision making and develop refusal skills.
Life skills training: This can incorporate life skills training , which equips students with the necessary skills to resist peer pressure, cope with stress, and make healthy choices. These programs focus on enchancing self esteem, communication, problem solving and decision making skills.

2) community Based initiatives: community Organization, healthcare providers, law enforcement agencies and schools can collaborate to develop and implement preventive initiatives. These partnership facilitate the sharing of resources ,expertise and support to create a comprehensive approach to drug abuse prevention.

3) parental involvement and Education: providing parents with information and resources about the risk and consequences of drugs is crucial. Parent education program focus on improving parental monitoring , communication skills, and setting clear expectation regarding drugs.

Media Literacy and responsible advertisment; media Literacy initiative aim to enhance critical thinking skills among youths regarding media messages related to Drug abuse. By teaching youths to analyze and interpret media content , they can develop a better understanding of the persuasive tactics used in Alcohol advertising and informed decisions.
Responsible advertising practices : Advocating for responsible advertising practices that avoid glamorizing Alcohol, target underage audiences or promote excessive consumption is essential. implementing stricter regulations and guidelines for drug advertising can help reduce the influence of advertising on youths attitude and behaviors

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