Family Planning Perceptions and Sustainable Development in Nigeria

Olawande T.I., Fasasi L.T


There have been concerns on the galloping population growth and its effects on human beings. The world’s population is increasing with significant social and economic implications at the individual, family, and societal levels. Family planning seems to be the potent cornerstone of a worldwide strategy to slow down population growth. However, in developing countries, the perception of the core population is not clear considering the hyper fertility rate in these countries. This study, a household survey, sampled 424 married women, and conducted five in-depth interviews, to examine the relationship between family planning methods and high fertility rate among married women in Nigeria. Health Belief Model was used to explain factors that influenced the perceptions of married women about family planning. Data collected were analysed using percentages for univariate analysis and chi square to test relationships between the variables. The results revealed that 95.5% of the respondents had heard about family planning while 53.3% stated that they had never used it. A greater percentage of them admitted that they refused to adopt family planning for fear of side effects. About 51% of them stated that money was a barrier to the adoption of family planning while 35% of the respondents claimed that their religion did not support it. Linear regression results revealed that significant relationships existed between family perceptions (p< 0.013), and sustainable development variables. Family planning was seen as an important preventive measure against infant and maternal mortality. The study concluded that culture, socio-economic factors and poor knowledge about family planning were major determinants of perceptions about family planning, and its utilisation. The study recommended increased family planning talks during clinical meetings with mothers, and empowerment of women in decision making about family planning within households.

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