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Self Esteem among Adolescents in Nigerian Secondary Schools: A Neglected Issue | Chapter 06 | Innovations in Medicine and Medical Research Vol. 1


Background: Self esteem among adolescents is a neglected issue in pediatrics, especially in this part of the world. Females ages fourteen to seventeen seemed to have positive self-esteem and so do the males but self esteem is low at middle ages. Females tend to have a low self esteem than males.

Objectives: The objective of this study is to determine the pattern of self esteem among adolescents and associated factors.

Methods: The study was carried out among adolescents attending secondary schools from two cities; (Enugu and Abakiliki located in south eastern part of Nigeria) within age range of 10-19 yr. A structured self administered questionnaire developed from self esteem scores was used for data collection.

Pearson’s chi-square was used to test for relationship between categorical variables while student t- test was used to test significant relationship between continuous variables. Test of significance was set at p<0.5.

Results: The self esteem questionnaire used was classified into two major questions with several sub questions. The first group is about self confidence, self fulfillment and self worth and confidence, the second group include depression, hopelessness, loneliness, and suicidal thoughts. We enrolled 507 adolescents in this study. The mean age of all participants was 16.3 (1.2) yr. Total mean self esteem score for all respondents is 15.77±2.769. Low self esteem was observed in 3.6% of the respondents with 4.3% of females and 2.5% of Males. Low self esteem is mostly seen in older adolescents aged 18-19 (44%) and rare among (adolescents less than 11 yr (0%). Low self esteem was more common among the female respondents in all the age ranges.

Conclusion: Self esteem is high among adolescents, though this is may be overemphasized as more research is needed in this area.

Author(s) Details

Josephat M. Chinawa
Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria/University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Ituku- Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria.

Herbert A. Obu
Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria/University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Ituku- Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria.

Pius C. Manyike
Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, Nigeria.

Ikechukwu E. Obi
Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria/University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria.

Odetunde O. Isreal
Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria/University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Ituku- Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria.

Awoere Tamunosiki Chinawa
Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria/University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu State, Nigeria.


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