Society of African Journal Editors

Journal of Public Health and Epidemiology

Risky sexual behaviors and associated factors among high and preparatory school youth, East Wollega, Ethiopia, 2017: A cross-sectional study design

Authors: Firomsa Hinkosa Tolera, Eshetu Girma, Abebe Mamo, Zalalem Kaba Babure

Journal: Journal of Public Health and Epidemiology

Most of the sexual initiation and sexual practice of the youth begins at secondary school level. At this stage student assumed to be exposed to many risky sexual behaviors. However, little research had been explored in the Oromia region particularly in East Wollega zone on this area. A cross-sectional study design was used to assess risky sexual behavior and associated factors among high school and preparatory school students from 1st October 2016 till October 30, 2016. Data was collected using self-administered questionnaire. Focus group discussion was conducted to support the quantitative data. Probability proportionate to sample size (PPS) was used to determine the sample size for each grade 9-12. The data was coded and entered into a computer using SPSS version 16.0. Final model was fitted and P value less than 0.05 considered as statistical significance and independent predictor of risky sexual behavior. The results revealed that three hundred and twenty-four students participated in the study (response rate of 97.7%). In the past 12 months, 25.3% of students had sexual intercourse, 17.07% of them had more than one sexual partners and 11.9% of male students visited commercial sex workers. Family connectedness [AOR, 95%CI 0.73(0.67-0.89)], attitudes toward sex [AOR, 95%CI 1.22(1.04-1.43)], khat chewing [AOR, 95%CI 9.25(2.51-34.07)] and those that had been forced by classmates for sex [AOR, 95%CI 7.63(2.36-24.66)] were independent predictors of risky sexual behaviors. The study thus revealed that risky sexual behavior of school youth was increased by khat chewing, sexual coerciveness from classmates or teacher, positive attitudes toward sexual intercourse and reduced by high family connectedness alongside attending religious services regularly. In addition to parental connectedness and parental supervision intervention targeted on school youth like positive peer influence to encourage safer sexual behaviors among school youth is very important in reduction of risky sexual behaviors. Key words: Associated factors, risky, school adolescent, sexual behaviors.