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THE USE OF TRAMADOL AMONG NDU STUDENTS
1.1 Background of the study
A drug is defined as any natural or artificial substance, other than food that by its chemical or physical nature alters structures or functions in the living organization (Dorwick and Maline, 2007). It is also defined according to their use; in pharmacology, as a chemical substance used in the treatment, cure, prevention, or diagnosis of disease or used to otherwise enhance physical or mental well-being. Psychoactive drugs are chemical substances that affect the function of the nervous system, altering perception, mood or consciousness. Recreational drugs are drugs that are not used for medicinal purposes, but are instead used for pleasure. These include alcohol, nicotine and caffeine, as well as other substances such as opiates and amphetamines. Drugs are also used as food supplements like vitamin and we necessarily benefit from drugs in terms of ill health, though prescribed by doctors (Elizabeth, & Martin, 2007). On the contrary, drugs are harmful and fatal if they are used wrongly. Tramadol is an opiod pain medication used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. When taken as an immediate-release oral formulation, the onset of pain relief usually occurs within about an hour. Tramadol is a type of strong opiod that works on the nervous system and brain to reduce the feel of pain. There are many different forms, strengths and brands of tramadol. Some forms and brands start working quickly to ease the pain, while others release the tramadol they contain more slowly, over several hours, to provide a constant and more even pain control. These are called ”modified-release” and often have ‘XL’ ‘SR’ or ’24hr’ in front of the brand name. Apart from its pain relieving effects, tramadol has been discovered to give a feeling of euphoric high when taken in large quantity. When opiods like tramadol are mixed with alcohol, it increases the effects of the alcohol. Substances and drug abuse are used interchangeably by people, however, drug refers to medicine prescribed by doctor, while substances abuse may include chemicals other than drugs e.g gasoline, glue among others. Substance was considered abused if it is deliberately used to induce physiological or psychological effects for a purpose other than for therapeutic purpose. Farhadinasab, Bashirian, & Mahjoub, (2008) noted that drug abuse mostly initiates with smoking and alcohol consuming in adolescence. However, tramadol abuse among students could be as a result of interaction between the peer groups, availability and nature of the substance. Some environmental factors that contribute to drug abuse are cultural, parents’ behavior, regulations and policies, which restrict access to the drugs Adverse impact of drug abuse is great as UNDCP (2002) sums up that, „Drugs destroy lives and communities, undermine sustainable human development and generate crime. Further, drugs affect all sectors of society in all countries and in particular; drug abuse affects freedom and development of young people, the world‟s most valuable asset. Further, drugs are a grave threat to the health of all mankind, the independence of states, democracy, the stability of nations, the structure of all societies and the dignity and hope of millions of people and their families‟. Ray & Ksir (2002) strongly support this fact that tramadol and other drug use is a factor in many accidents, injuries, vandalism, and crime on collages and is frequently a key factor when students encounter problems with their coursework. Ironically, even college students who should avoid the unsafe use of tramadol and other drugs still suffer the effects of the high-risk behaviors of their peers such as conflicts or having to take care of their drug induce and drunken colleagues. The World Health Organization (WHO) have stated that by the year 2020 mental and substance use disorders will surpass all physical diseases as a major cause of disability worldwide (WHO, 2008). WHO (2013) further emphasizes that at least 15.3 million individuals have drug use disorders and drug abuse are associated with significant health and social problems. NACADA (2012) views many risks associated with the problem of tramadol abuse including; dependent young adults, increased health care needs amongst the youth abusing alcohol and drugs and crimes resultant from idleness and the youth’s drinking habits. Several psychosocial and environmental factors combine to aggravate and sustain habitual drug and substance abuse among tertiary institution students in Akure South LGA. According to Mohammed Rafeq Hassan Tafesh (2013) There is no doubt that the strength of any society derives from the power of his youth, they work as a first line of defense against any breach of the social fabric, by maintaining values and morals, religion and heritage. From this standpoint, if spread phenomenon of drug and substance abuse among members of the community, especially young people, this threatens catastrophe will occur in the community. Substance abuse and addictive behavior are universal phenomena and are regarded in the twentieth century as a major public health problem. Historical evidence suggest that since ancient times living with psychoactive substance seems to be part of the fabric of our lives (Gossop,1993). The desire to experience some altered state of unconsciousness seems to be an intrinsic part of the human condition . The health and social costs of the abuse of these psychoactive substances unfortunately reflect most disturbing morbidity and mortality (Rassool & Gafor, 1997). The squealer of the harm physical ,social, psychological and economic derived from the abuse of psychoactive substance not only affect the individual user but also the family. Following the December 2008 Israeli criminal war, a United Nations survey of Gaza residents found increases in risk taking behavior, including a significant rise in cases of drug addiction (Hammami, 2009). One drug associated with this trend is Tramadol, first developed in Germany during the 1970s and introduced in the 1990s as a centrally acting analgesic with properties similar to codeine and morphine and which is widely prescribed as a pain killer(Lewis & Han,1997). Although illegal without a prescription in some regions, Tramadol is relatively easy to obtain in Akure, either with fake prescriptions from pharmacies or on the black market. News reports prior to the 2008 offensive suggested that up to 30 percent of males between the ages of 14 and 30 had already been using Tramadol on a regular basis, with some15,000 showing signs of addiction(O‘Loughlin, 2008),idly or significant others and the whole community .
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Drug abuse and addiction has become one of the most important public health problems in recent years. Information providing role of lay theories is undeniable in preventive and rehabilitative works related to drug addiction. Several studies investigated the beliefs and attitudes related to different kinds of drugs. For instance,( Furnham &Thomson, 1996) found that the participants‘ political views were the most important determinant of lay beliefs about heroin addiction. Research also indicated that certain variables increase the risk of drug abuse. Younger people are more prone to drug abuse (Royo-Bordonada et al,1997). The increase in abuse of marketed medications in recent years has highlighted the need for abuse-liability assessment (Samhsa, 2003). The abuse of tramadol among tertiary institution students in Akure is on the rise, studies has shown that prior to 2010 that up to 30 percent of males between the ages of 14 and 30 had Despite consistent campaign against drugs and substance abuse, thousands of boxes of Tramadol still make their way to the street of Akure’ who are increasingly dependent on the drug, some having become seriously addicted. It is against this backdrop that the researcher intend to investigate how to improve the knowledge and attitude of tramadol use among tertiary institution student in Akure south.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main objective of the study is to explore the technique of improving knowledge attitude and perception of tramadol use among tertiary institution student in Akure south LGA. But to aid the completion of the study, the researcher intends to achieve the following specific objective;
i) To investigate the effect of tramadol usage on the academic performance of students in Akure south LGA
ii) To examine the role of parents in curbing the menace of substance abuse amongst tertiary institution students
iii) To examine if there is any significant relationship between tramadol abuse and student mental well-being
iv) To ascertain the impact of tramadol on the psychological well-being of tertiary institution student in Akure
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
To aid the successful completion of the study, the following research questions were formulated by the researcher;
i) Is there any effect of tramadol usage on the academic performance of tertiary institution students in Akure?
ii) Does parent have any role to play in curbing the menace of drug abuse?
iii) Is there any relationship between tramadol abuse and students mental well-being?
iv) Does tramadol abuse have any impact on the psychological well-being of the students?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is believed that at the completion of the study, the findings will be of great importance to the counseling unit in tertiary institutions in Akure as the study will aid them effectively look into the menace of drugs (tramadol) and substance abuse among tertiary institution students, the study will also be of importance to the NDLEA Nigerian drugs law enforcement agency as the study seek to remind them on the need to mob out this substance from the street so that this student will no longer have access to this drugs, the study will also be of importance to researchers who intend to embark on a study in a similar topic, as the study will serve as a reference point for further research, finally the study will be of great importance to academia, lecturers, students and the general public as the study will contribute to knowledge and also add to the pool of existing literature.
1.6 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The scope of the study covers improving knowledge attitude and perception of tramadol use among tertiary institution students in Akure south LGA, but in the cause of the study there were some factors that militate against the scope of the study;
(a) Availability of research material: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.
(b) Time: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
(c) Finance: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Tramadol, sold under the brand name Ultram among others, is an opioid pain medication used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain.
Perception is the organization, identification, and interpretation of sensory information in order to represent and understand the presented information, or the environment
Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as facts, information, descriptions, or skills, which is acquired through experience or education by perceiving, discovering, or learning
ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY
This research work is organized in five chapters for easy understanding as follows Chapter one is concern with the introduction which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study it’s based thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion and recommendations made of the study.
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