Background: Previous research on adolescent alcohol/substance use in Nigeria had focused on the pattern of use without consideration for the extent of use. Socio-demographic correlates have also not been well explored. Information about socio-demographic correlates can also inform target-points in preventive strategies. Knowledge of the prevalence of problematic pattern of alcohol/substance use can inform the inclusion of rehabilitation strategies in intervention policies.
Objectives: To determine the prevalence, pattern and extent-as well as socio-demographic correlates-of alcohol/substance use among a cohort of adolescents in Nigeria.
Methods: Pattern and extent of alcohol/substance use was examined using the CRAFFT instrument.
Results: A total of 538 adolescents with a mean age of 15.1 ± 1.4 years returned completed questionnaires. 12-month prevalence of alcohol and other substance use was 21.4%. About 46% of those who reported use of alcohol or any other substance had a CRAFFT score of >2 which suggests problematic pattern of use. Older age, male gender, parental alcohol and substance and lower than average school performance were independently associated with 12-moNth use of alcohol or any other substance.
Conclusions: Adolescent alcohol and substance use is common in Nigeria and a large proportion of users show a problematic pattern of use that warrants rehabilitative intervention.
Keywords: Adolescents; CRAFFT; Nigeria; substance abuse.