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Sexual behavioral pattern among students in Jos, Nigeria

Background

With the prevalence of HIV infection being highest among young people, it is becoming important to find ways and means of motivating adolescents to take the threat of the infection seriously and approach their sexuality with a lot of responsibility. In many countries, sexually active adolescents are at high risk of HIV infection. For both biological and social reasons, adolescent girls often have the highest HIV incidence. This study attempted to explore the sexual behavior of students in secondary schools, their awareness about HIV/AIDS and preventive measures; especially the use of condom.

Methods

A total of 4700 students aged 11–18 years from 10 secondary schools in Jos were assessed. They were subjected to focus grouped discussions and self administered questionnaires.

Results

Out of 4700 students, 1100/4700 (23.4%) were males and 3600/4700 (76.6%) females. Among those who have had first sexual contact (1300/4700) representing 27.7%:600/1300 (46.2%) males and 700/1300 (53.8%) females. Those that had more than one sexual partner were 400/1300 (30.8%), while 3400/4700 (72.3%) claimed to be virgins. The median age of first sex contact was 15 years. Out of the number interviewed, 700/4700(14.9%) volunteered to have had HIV testing, while 2300/4700 (48.9%) volunteered to be tested immediately without their parents or guardians consent. A total of 4700 (100%) have heard about HIV/AIDS and preventive measures.

Conclusion

Though the awareness is quite high and the rate of sexuality is climbing, yet VCT (voluntary counseling and testing) could not be assessed easily. Hence, the need for mobile VCT to be introduced in order for adolescents to know their HIV status. In this way adequate preventive measures, treatment, and care could be taken to halt the spread of the virus.

Author information

Correspondence to Ameh James.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Keywords

  • Infectious Disease
  • Cancer Research
  • Young People
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexual Partner