The Consumption Of Hard Drugs Among Youths In Nigeria
1.1 Background of the Study
Drug misuse has become a global issue that must be addressed by all responsible governments, both in developed and developing countries. Nigeria as a country has seen a rise in the prevalence of substance abuse as a result of poor economic conditions that have resulted in increased youth unemployment, political crisis, ethno-religious conflict, and poor government policies that have resulted in the youth living in abject poverty. Youth have become a social problem and a tool for politicians to manipulate the political process.
Drug abuse is described as the self-administration of drugs for non-medical purposes in quantities and frequency that may result in incapacity to perform successfully and physical, social, and/or emotional impairment. Drug and other substance use and abuse is a global phenomena with a long history. Muthigani, (1995) traces the use of chemical substances that alter behavior back to the Stone Age period, observing that Egyptian relics from displayed opioid use in religious rites and that the Incas of South America also were known to have used cocaine at least 5000 years ago, cannabis sativa, the common drug, has a 5000 year history. Nigerian youngsters, like those in many other countries throughout the world, are progressively becoming addicted to psychoactive substances or engaging in drug misuse. The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA, 2011) gathered data on drug use and abuse from schools, records of patients admitted to mental health institutions for drug problems, and interviews with people detained for drug offenses. The findings revealed that youths are a high-risk population for drug misuse. Friends and classmates account for over 90% of the sources of influence for the use and misuse of various psychoactive substances. Although alcohol and cigarettes are permitted in Nigeria, both have been shown to inflict bodily harm to human beings. Tobacco use has been linked to 90.0 percent of lung cancer, 30.0 percent of all malignancies, and 80.0 percent of other chronic lung disorders (Sale 2008).
The situation is exacerbated in African countries, where the use of these chemicals is associated with a wide range of risk behaviors, including criminality, violence, and suicide (Muthigani,1995). Injectors of cocaine and heroin have a significant risk of getting infections such as HIV, Hepatitis B and C, abscesses, and other ill-health problems, such as drug dependence, which appears with a complicated set of behaviors associated to mental diseases. Substance abuse becomes a problem for consumers when it begins to harm their physical health, mental health, and social well-being. These consequences include mental illness, crime, violence, and infections such as HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis, which are linked to the use of these substances (Kaguthi, 2006).
The degree of harm connected with the use of these chemicals is increasing in Nigeria and other middle and low income Sub-Saharan African nations, as well as in high income countries such as the United States (Aliyu, 2014). Despite the fact that the majority of young people recognize the dangers of substance addiction, there is still a high frequency of this phenomenon in Africa (Ekpenyong, 2012). Drug misuse is one of Nigeria’s biggest social problems, having frequent and easily detectable public health manifestations. Half of Nigeria’s drug users are between the ages of 10 and 19, with more than 60% living in cities and 21% in rural regions (UNODC 2004). Using drugs at the age of 14 or younger considerably increases the likelihood of acquiring drug issues later in life. In Nigeria, the most widely misused substances include alcohol, tobacco (marijuana), glue, and psychiatric medicines (Kaguthi, 2006).
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Drug usage appears to be a developing concern globally as well as in our context among children in public secondary schools. Some studies have found that drug use among school-age children not only impairs their academic performance, but also lowers their Intelligence Quotient and makes them more vulnerable to criminality. Furthermore, drug misuse exposes children to health concerns as well as a slew of other issues (Karechio,1996). Substance abuse is still one of the world’s biggest problems, with millions of people, particularly young people, taking legal and illegal drugs (Oluwale, Olatunji, & Olufunlayo, 2011). (Jag, Glenn, Elinore, & Ellen, 2008). According to the National Survey on Substance Use and Health, over 110 million Americans aged 12 and older (46 percent) took at least one illegal drug in their lifetime, including amphetamines, cocaine, heroin, and marijuana (cannabis) (Karechio,1996). Individuals, families, friends, and society are all negatively impacted by substance misuse on physical, psychological, and social levels (Mohammad, 2014). Medical issues, academic problems, conflicts, criminality, financial troubles, psychological disorders, and a surge in occultism are among the negative consequences of substance misuse, according to Ahmad (2012).
1.3 Objectives of the Problem
The primary objective of this study is to analyse the consumption of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria. Other specific objectives which this study will address but not limited to are:
- To examine the factors that promotes the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria
- To examine the level of usage of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria
- To examine the effects of hard drugs on youths in Nigeria
- To examine the ways to eradicate the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria
1.4 Research Questions
- What are the factors that promotes the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria?
- To what level is the usage of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria?
- What are the effects of hard drugs on youths in Nigeria?
- What are the ways to eradicate the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria?
1.5 Significance of the Study
This study will be of great significance to the society as it will show the factors, level of usage, effects and ways to eradicate hard drugs in the society. It will also be greatly significant to the youths as it will show the effects of hard drugs thus letting them know how dangerous hard drugs are to them.
Additionally, this study will be of great benefit to scholars and researchers as it will serve as an existing material for future reference and further studies.
1.6 Scope of the Study
This study will be focused on the consumption of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria. It will specifically be focused on the factors that promotes the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria, level of usage of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria, the effects of hard drugs on youths in Nigeria and ways to eradicate the use of hard drugs among youths in Nigeria.
University of Jos students will serve as respondents for the survey of this study.
1.7 Limitations of the Study
Like all human endeavour, this research work was not without some factors that tended to jeopardize the smooth completion of the study. One of the factors is on the fact that the period of time allowed for this work was short that the researcher did not have enough time to do a thorough job.
Also the researcher in the course of data collection, had to put in extra effort to interpreting interviews schedule of the respondents, some who fall within the in comprehensible age limit. Additionally, there were financial and transit constraints.
1.8 Definition of Terms
The action of using up a resource.
An addicting drug capable of producing severe physical or psychological dependence, as heroin
Youth is the time of life when one is young, and often means the time between childhood and adulthood. It also refers to young people between 13 and 25 years or their activities and their characteristics.
The Consumption Of Hard Drugs Among Youths In Nigeria
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is the prevalence of drugs in Nigeria?
The past year prevalence of any drug use is estimated at 14.4 per cent (range 14.0 per cent – 14.8 per cent), corresponding to 14.3 million people aged 15-64 years who had used a psychoactive substance in the past year for non-medical purposes. • Among every 4 drug users in Nigeria 1 is a woman.
What are the social consequences of drug use in Nigeria?
Prevalence of drug use in Nigeria by geopolitical zones and states, 2017 The social consequences of drug use are also evident in Nigeria. Key informants considered that there were major social problems such as disruption in family lives, loss in productivity and legal problems as a consequence of drug use in their communities.
What is the extent of tobacco use among school children in Nigeria?
Analysis of the data from the RCT has shown the extent of tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug use among school children (mainly aged 14 and 15 years) in Nigeria. The proportion of pupils who smoked cigarettes at least once in their life was, over – all, quite low (5.1 per cent) except in the North-West zone where it was 13.4 percent.
Which zones are the most addicted to drugs in Nigeria?
North-Central Zone The North-Central zone contains Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Plateau and Niger States and the Federal Capi – tal Territory (FCT) Abuja. The estimated annual preva- lence of drug use is 10 per cent in this zone, equivalent to 1.5 million past year drug users.