Do Peer and Family Factors Determine Substance Abuse? Voices of Adolescents Undergoing Treatment in a Psychiatric Ward, Lagos, Nigeria

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Adejoh, S.O
Olorunlana, A.
Adisa, W.B
Onwuasoanya, O.
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Although studies on drug abuse among adolescents are abound, there is however limited works on the life experiences of drug abusers, undergoing treatment in a psychiatric ward in Lagos, Nigeria. This study explored the experiences of drug abusers on whether family and peer influences are factors of predispositions and consequences of drug abuse in Lagos, Nigeria. Methods: Using purposive sampling, 20 adolescents receiving medical attention for at least 6 months in a psychiatric ward of a teaching hospital participated in the in-depth interviews which were audio-recorded. Data were content-analysed using exploratory design. Results: Participants ranged in age from 14 to 18 years old, and all were receiving psychiatric treatment in a hospital ward. Findings indicated that participants were pressured into drug use by peers, to enhance performance, parental neglect and relatives using or abusing a substance. Participants abused illicit drugs and over-the-counter drugs among others. Consequently, they got addicted, and their behaviours were negatively impacted. All participants reported they were taken to the psychiatric ward because of their addiction to a certain psycho-active drug that affected their cognitive behaviour. Conclusion: There is a need for a continuous sensitization about the harmful effects of drug abuse to all citizens. Parents should also be educated on the need to discharge their responsibility of caring for their wards. These findings have implications to the breaking of the cycle of drug addiction, and how to prevent future problems from drug abuse among adolescents.
Scholarly articles
Drug abuse , Adolescents , Peer pressure , Nigeria , Domestic violence , Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES::Social sciences::Social work
Adejoh, S.O., Olorunlana, A., Adisa, W.B., & Onwuasoanya, O. (2020). Do peer and family factors determine substance abuse? voices of adolescents undergoing treatment in a psychiatric ward, Lagos, Nigeria. Archives of Psychiatry Research 2020;56:155-168 DOI:10.20471/dec.2020.56.02.04