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KNOWLEDGE OF RISK FACTORS AND CONSEQUENCES OF SELF MEDICATION AMONG STUDENT NURSES OF OUR LADY OF LOURDES HOSPITAL IHIALA

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KNOWLEDGE OF RISK FACTORS AND CONSEQUENCES OF SELF MEDICATION AMONG STUDENT NURSES OF OUR LADY OF LOURDES HOSPITAL IHIALA

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

To be in good health is an essential component of one’s life, having access to an efficient healthcare system in a community is important. Most of the common health ailments are treated by the individual themselves without medical supervision, termed self-medication (SM) (Sharif, Bugaighis, & Sharif, 2015). According to World Health Organization (WHO 2015) definition, “Self-medication involves the use of medicinal products by the consumer to treat self-diagnosed disorders or symptoms, or the intermittent or continued use of medication prescribed by a physician for chronic or recurrent diseases or symptoms” (Bekele, Argaw & Yalew 2016).

Self-medication (SM) is common in both developed and developing countries, with prevalence rates ranging from 25.6 to 73.6%. It is also associated with a positive perception of the country’s healthcare system (Ayanwale, Okafor & Odukoya, 2017). When practiced effectively, SM could benefit both the individual and the healthcare system by potentially saving lives in emergency situations, minimizing long waiting times for proper medical assistance, and also lowering healthcare costs. On the contrary, SM may increase risks such as unnecessary use of medication, extended duration of consumption, drug–drug interactions, and polypharmarcy.

Self-medication increases the risk of using illegal drugs, developing drug dependence, and masking the underlying medical conditions, all of which can compromise human safety, leading to drug resistance, and making diagnosis more challenging (Sharif, Bugaighis, & Sharif, 2015). According to the researchers, the use of over-the-counter medications is common and inappropriate among student nurses in universities around the world (Singn et al.,2019). Owing to the overwhelming use of social media, student nurses are now relying more on the internet than healthcare professionals in their health-related information (Kasulkar & Gupta (2015). As a result, more college student nurses are practicing SM to treat self-diagnosed illnesses (De Loyola, et al., (2015). SM has a greater impact on student nurses with a medical knowledge background as they have easy access to information from their curriculum and literature (Afolabi (2018). Previous studies on SM practice among medical students reported that the prevalence differed in developing and developed countries (Giardina, 2018). Easy availability of physician samples from pharmaceutical representatives and the white coat effect of being health science students ensure trouble-free access to drugs from pharmacies (Al Khaja, Handu, James, Otoom, & Sequeira, 2016). Studies have shown that the practice of SM is influenced by multiple factors such as education, family, friends, and the rule and regulations of that particular country. Medical textbooks, articles, and social media marketing strategies of pharmaceuticals persuade participants to contemplate purchasing medications without prescription rather than seeking the advice of a healthcare professional. Previous research studies have shown that the causes of SM include minor illness.

previous experience in treating similar illnesses, financial concerns, and a scarcity of physicians. Medical textbooks, articles, and social media marketing strategies of pharmaceuticals persuade participants to contemplate purchasing medications without prescription rather than seeking the advice of a healthcare professional. Previous research studies have shown that the causes of SM include minor illnesses, previous experience treating similar illnesses, financial concerns, and a scarcity of physicians (De Loyola, et al., (2015). However, there is a paucity of studies that show the prevalence of SM among student nurses in Nigeria. Hence, the study was designed to assess the knowledge of risk factors and consequences of self medication among student nurses of our lady of lourdes hospital Ihiala. Thus, creating awareness of the benefits and adverse effects of SM and its impact on the health of the young generation in society.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Self-medication is the use of drugs with therapeutic value but without consulting professional prescription or advice (Raut et al, 2014). It is also known as the used of nondescription medicines. The intend to do this act drive by the need to relieve the side symptoms like headache, coughs, cold, throat, stomach ache, and fever (Uppal, Agarwal, & Roy, 2014). Most cases start from a very trivial health issues but, with the consume of inappropriate portion and unfavourable self-condition, eventually it become worse. Those who have direct contact with health association like nurses, physician, pharmacist, and the students are contributed to most of the ratios’ incidence (Sharif, Bugaighis, & Sharif, 2015). The abuse privileges of pharmacological knowledge and easy gain of the drugs make this action become more distinctive among them.

In cases of student nurses, the sentiments of using non-prescription medicines are due to the reasoning of prior experiences of oneself or a friend taking the very same medicines (Uppal et al., 2014). It is also seen as an economically convenient and can save time spent rather than waiting in line to seek for doctor. Self-medication is seen as a life saver for a readily relief of acute medical problems and in emergency situations (Parihar et al., 2018). Notwithstanding, sometimes valuable knowledges can turn against people as it makes them too confident on treating their own illness. The consuming of medication should be based on how to take or use the drugs, the probable effects and side effects, the ways to monitor these side effects, the possible interaction with other drugs, the duration of the drugs, etc. (Raut et al, 2014). On another perspective of self-medication, it brings dangers to many things like habitual and allergic reactions that may be severe or even worse, fatal (Mehta & Sharma, 2015). When it comes to the dosage of the drugs, self-medication practice accordingly to what are the student nurses perceived in order to resolve the symptoms. Under-dosage may not even cure the symptoms meanwhile over-dosage will affect and cause a collateral damage to the organs (Mehta & Sharma, 2015).

The idea of self-medication among student nurses - the knowledge of benefits and harmful effects of drugs, then it turns into attitudes on what is the appropriate way for the drugs should be taken, and eventually committing self by turning it into practice. This is probably the path that the student nurses assure of its beneficiary.

1.3 Research Questions

The following research questions were drawn to direct the study:

  1. Ascertain the reasons for self-medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala

  2. Ascertain the most frequently used medicines used for self-medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala

  3. Ascertain the implications of self medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions will be answered in this study:

  1. What are the reasons for self-medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala?

  2. What are the most frequently used medicines used for self-medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala?

  3. What are the implications of self medication among nursing students in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Ihiala?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

Ho: There are no significant consequences associated with self medication among nursing students.

Ha: There are significant consequences associated with self medication among nursing students.

1.6 Significance Of The Study

The use of self-medication is highly prevalent in student nurses. The practice of self-medication is influenced by factors such as socioeconomic status of patients, level of study, cultural practices, family influences, personal interest in the community and various other factors. Hence to address the disadvantage of self-medication and to increase the knowledge of people about responsible self-medication,we need to have a clear picture of the factors influencing self-medication. Nigeria, being one of the countries of the world still lacks a good public health infrastructure on the ground of poor funding of the health sector is very much vulnerable to harms of self-medication. Therefore this study will be important as information gathered will help prevent self-medication which is growing in recent times by addressing the factors promoting the scourge.

Additionally, this study may be significant in adding on the existing literature on self-medication hence providing reference for future studies carried out on the same problem.

1.7 Scope Of The Study

Broadly, this study focuses on the knowledge of risk factors and consequences of self medication among student nurses of our lady of lourdes hospital Ihiala. Selected nursing students of our lady of Lourdes hospital Ihiala will serve as the enrolled participants for the survey of this study.

1.8 Limitations Of The Study

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. The significant constraint was the absence of literature on brand switching behaviour of consumers. Thus much time and organization was required in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection. Also the study is limited in sample size and geography covering only Ihiala metropolis. Therefore findings of this study cannot be used for generalization thus creating a gap for further studies.

Also encountered was time constraint as the researcher had to carry out this research in addition to attending lectures and other educational activities required of him.

1.9 Definition Of Terms

Self-medication: An individual self-selection on the use of medicines or medicinal products including herbal and traditional to treat self-recognized symptoms or disorders, or, the use of a past prescribed medication by a physician for chronic or recurring disease or symptoms intermittently or continuously (“WHO Guidelines for the regulatory assessment of medicinal products for use in self-medication.

Knowledge: The state or fact of being aware of something, or a familiarity gained through association.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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