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Year : 2023  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 14-20

Depression and associated factors among in-school adolescents in Nigeria

1 Department of Paediatrics, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Rivers, Nigeria
2 Department of Mental Health/Neuropsychiatry, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Rivers, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Chukwuma Ugochukwu Okeafor
Department of Mental Health/Neuropsychiatry, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Rivers
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/shb.shb_237_22

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Introduction: Depression is projected to become the leading cause of disability as well as the leading contributor to the global burden of disease by 2030. Depression in adolescents is a public health concern as it increases the risk of substance abuse, relationship difficulties, suicide, and poor academic performance. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of depression and its associated risk factors among adolescents. Methods: This was a school-based cross-sectional study involving 1428 adolescents aged 10–19 years in secondary schools in the Port Harcourt metropolis, Rivers State, Nigeria. Adolescents were selected using multistage sampling technique. Data on sociodemographic and family structure were obtained using a self-administered pretested semi-structured questionnaire. The presence of depression was determined using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). Adolescents with BDI scores of ≥18 were categorized as depressed. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were performed at P < 0.05. Results: Of the 1428 adolescents recruited, 563 (39.4%) were males. The mean age was 14.30 ± 2.04 years. The prevalence of depression was 21.9% (n = 313). Significantly higher odds of depression were reported among females (adjusted odds ratio (AOR): 1.447; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.107–1.891; P = 0.007), low socioeconomic status (AOR: 1.409; 95% CI: 1.064–1.865; P = 0.017), and family structures that were not monogamous (AOR: 1.586;95% CI: 1.152–2.183; P = 0.005). Conclusion: Depression is not uncommon among in-school adolescents in Nigeria. In addition to the inclusion of screening for depression in the school health program, measures to reduce the burden are advocated, especially among female adolescents and adolescents from low socioeconomic backgrounds.

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