Factors for alcohol use and abuse and its effects on mental health among female students in Makerere University
Lugasa, Henry Harold
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This study was conducted to find out the factors for alcohol use and abuse, its effects on mental health among female students in Makerere University. The study objectives were to measure and determine prevalence of alcohol use and abuse, to explore the factors associated with alcohol use and abuse, and to assess the effect of alcohol abuse on the mental health outcomes for female students at Makerere University. This was a cross sectional survey, with a random sample of 118 respondents. Data was collected through a structured questionnaire. Data was analysed using STATA 15 software. Descriptive statistics were obtained whereby for categorical variables like hall of residence, frequencies and percentages were attained and mean with standard deviation for continuous variables for example age. The study found that for every 100 female students, about 18 students abuse alcohol. Majority of the students had ever taken alcohol (67%). Majority of respondents had ventured into alcohol by themselves (39.2%) , while (35.5%) had been introduced by friends. The simple logistic regression results between the mental outcomes and alcohol abuse show that the effect of alcohol abuse on hurting oneself is statistically significant (p-value=0.011) at 5% level of significance. The odds of hurting oneself among alcohol abusers are 4.3 times of those who do not abuse alcohol (OR=4.30, 95% CI 1.40, 13.16). This study concludes that hazardous and harmful alcohol use is a reality in universities today leading to alcohol dependence among some of the students. With the rising cases of alcohol abuse and use, there is need for universities to formulate effective intervention measures to help curb high alcohol consumption among students. Interventions for harmful alcohol use prevention in university campuses, creating a need for further research to understand the reasons why university students especially the female gender, continue to use alcoholic drinks despite the consequences of alcohol use and abuse.