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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 37-40

Pattern of health seeking behaviour of mothers for common childhood illnesses in Enugu metropolis south east zone Nigeria

1 Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, Enugu, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku Ozalla, Enugu, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
U E Ezeoke
Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, Enugu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Objective: The Objective of the study is to assess the Health Seeking Behaviour of mothers when their children present with the common aliments and their preferred treatment options. Materials And Methods: A cross sectional survey of 300 women that brought their children for routine immunization and growth monitoring to three health institutions in Enugu metropolis was carried out using an interviewer administered structured questionnaire. Result: Majority of the mothers, 208(69.3%) used self treatment for their children at home when they presented with common illnesses. A total of 146(48.7%) made use of government health institutions, 117(39. 0%) attended private health institutions while 21(7.0%) consulted an elder woman and 9 (.0%) patronized prayer house. Only 3(1%) respondents sought the help of traditional healers. Conclusion: In this study, the greater percentage of mothers used self medication for treatment of common childhood illnesses. The implication of this is that the majority of the mothers may not know the right treatment to institute at any point in time. This situation could lead to more complications of the illnesses or even loss of life. As a result, mothers should be educated on how best to take care of their sick children at home and be able to recognize when to seek appropriate help.

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