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Substance Use Trends among Undergraduate Students and Its Association with Sociodemographics and Self-esteem

Ferdinand Banji Kumolalo, Adetunji Obadeji, Benjamin Olamide Adegoke

Objectives: Earlier studies suggest that self-esteem is an important predisposing factor to substance use among young adults. In this study, we intended to determine the risk, patterns of substance use, and the association between self-esteem and substance use among undergraduate students. Methods: This is a cross-sectional study in a state university in Nigeria. The study university students completed a copy of sociodemographic questionnaire inquiring about their substance use and an assessment with the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Results: A sum of 448 students took part in the study. Among them, the odds ratio (OR) (95% confidence interval) of 198 (44.2%) students was found to be 0.442 (0.395–0.489) for a lifetime history of any substance use while OR (95% confident interval) of 141 (31.5%) students was found to be 0.315 (0.272–0.360) to have a history of current use of any substance. We also found that 182 students, i.e., 0.406 (0.360–0.453) and 118 students, i.e., 0.263 (0.223–0.307) had lifetime and current use of alcohol, respectively. This was followed by nicotine, tramadol, and cannabis. Participants who were 21 years and above, male, in third year and above, and who were not satisfied with their finances were significantly more to have a lifetime and current history of substance use (p < 0.05). There was no significant association between self-esteem and either lifetime or current substance use. Conclusion: The patterns of substance use in this study were similar to those obtained in the general population, however, with a relatively higher rate of alcohol use. Students with substance use were more likely to be males, older, have some financial difficulties, and low to normal self-esteem.
Key Word alcohol use, drug abuse, epidemiology, substance-related disorder
Editorial Committe, Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry
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