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1.1 Background of the Study  

The menace of HIV has affected every body in one way or the other in the whole world. Some children are rendered orphans, shops are closed, some schools are closed down due to few students in attendance, and some government offices are shut down due to death of the workers. Infact, all works of life are affected by HIV and AIDS particularly, the young people in schools. Alubo (2001) attested that adolescents because of their assertive and curious nature tend to explore, change, shape and confirm their ideas about life through experimentation. Hence, they have multiple sexual partners which expose them to the risk of contacting HIV and AIDS.

The word HIV and AIDS is an acronym for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). HIV is a virus that replicates in the body and can develop into acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (united national joint programme on HIV and AIDS, 2009). There are two types of HIV. HIV-1 and HIV -2. HIV-1 is the cause of the current worldwide pandemic while HIV-2 is found in West Africa and rarely else where. HIV-2, which is transmitted in the same ways as HIV-1, causes AIDS much more slowly than HIV-1 but clinically the diseases of both are very similar. HIV-1 and HIV-2 are thought to have arisen from two natural hosts both harboring simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV). HIV-1 resulted from human infection by SIVcpz that infects chimpanzees and HIV-2 resulted from infection by SIVsmm harbored by sooty mangabeys. (Goudsmit, 1997)


HIV-1 and HIV -2 have the same mode of transmission. According to Anike (2008) unprotected sexual intercourse is the main mode of HIV transmission through exchange of body fluid during sexual intercourse. This account for 80% chance of contacting HIV and


AIDS. Anongu (2007) stated that HIV can be transmitted through contaminated blood transfusion, or transfusion of infected blood and blood products, when the skin is pierced by needles, tattooing equipment, sharp barbing instrument like razor, clipper blades that have been contaminated with blood containing HIV. Also through mother to child during pregnancy, delivery or breastfeeding are the major mode of transmission of HIV. Some people fear that HIV might be transmitted in some other ways, however, no scientific evidence support any of those fears. Therefore, HIV cannot be transmitted through the following way, embracing, shaking, hands, living in the same house, sitting, eating, sleeping, working with an infected person, it cannot be spread through insect bites such as mosquitoes and bedbugs (Ryan, 2004). When infection with Human Immunodeficiency virus occurs through any of the mention routes of transmission, it infects attacks and gradually destroys vital cell such as CD4+T Helper cells (CD4+tIymphochytes) and monocytes and macrophages that regulate and coordinates the other cells. Once inside the cell HIV reproduce rapidly and massively destroy the cells. The dead cells releases HIV which infects the surrounding cells and the infections continues. The viruses are also attracted to the monocytes and macrophages, hide in them and are carried to the brain, lungs and Lymph nodes (World Health Organization, 2004). As CD4+T- cells are required for the proper functioning of the immune system, when enough CD4+T-cells have been destroyed by HIV, the immune system function poorly and result in the development of opportunistic infections such as Tuberculosis, kaposis, saccoma (a painful skin tension) fungal infections like candida, desophagites infection like puenmocy, stick and carmphenmonia that can kill the patient if not placed on treatment early and also result to AIDS. (World Health Organization, 2004).

Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is the last stage of Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV), when a person’s immune system is severely damaged and has difficult fighting disease (Ejoka, 2006). Presently, HIV and AIDS is incurable, affecting all population groups, sexes age, races and socio-economic levels, (Okafor 1997). Commenting on this, Kaiser family foundation (2011) stated that HIV and AIDS causes have been reported in all regions of t he world, but most people living with the diseases reside in low and middle income countries. AIDS is now the leading cause of death and the fourth biggest globa killer in sub-saharan Africa (Kaiser, 2012).

United Nationals Joint Programme on HIV and AIDS stated that 22.5million people are Currently living with the virus in West Africa, Nigeria the most populous country in Africa has the highest number of 3.6 million of the patients in West Africa (UNAIDS, 2011). Nigeria ranks as one of the countries with the highest burden of the virus in the world, next only to India and South Africa. The report further stated that within the population of people living with HIV in Nigeria, females constitutes almost three fifth 58.3%, as about 1. 72 million women and girls are infected with HIV. Even more alarming is the fact that the highest prevalence rate of 5.6% occurs among the age groups of 14-24 years. Thus young people are infected with HIV in Nigeria. The report  equally reveal that the April 2009 HIV and AIDS update indicated that an estimate 2.99 million consisting of 1.38million males and 1.61 females have so far died from HIV related causes in Nigeria. According to Kaiser, (2011) 220,000 people died from AIDS in Nigeria in 2009. With heterosexual sex factor accounting for an approximated 80-95 percent of infections in Nigeria. Apart from heterosexual sex factors, other factors include lack of information about sexuality, sexual health and sources of HIV transmission. Mother to child transmission each year is around 57,000 babies in Nigeria are born with HIV. It is estimated that 360,000 children are living with HIV in the country. (Federal Ministry of Health, 2005).

Kaduna state is one of the States in Nigeria that prevalence rate of HIV and AIDS is high. According to Kaduna State Action Committee on HIV and AIDS (2011) report, out of 3.2 million people in the state the estimated number of people living with the virus is between 94,000-96,000 while the number of HIV negative people is about to 3.1 million. Investigation by ENSACA shows that the high prevalence rate of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome in Kaduna State was due to low knowledge about the disease by the majority of the people in the state. A review indicated that low risk perception; the belief by many people that they cannot contact the disease, further contributed to the spread of the scourge especially the rural people. The state with 6.5 percent prevalence rate has the highest in the South East and  Fourth in the Nation and the pandemic is feared to be on the increase in recent times following indiscriminate sexual activities of teenagers and young adults who constitute a larger portion of the population.

Most researchers on in-school adolescents in Nigeria have focused mainly on stigmatization and discrimination against people living with HIV and AIDS, Education and sexual life patterns towards AIDS among adolescents, and role of secondary school principals in the control of AIDS. From the available literature, much is yet to be done in the area of determinant of the spread of HIV and AIDS. It is the quest to address this problem that has motivated this study.

1.2 Statement of the Problem       

It is no gainsaying that HIV and AIDS diseases have claimed the lives of many youths and adult and will continue to do so if drastic measures are not taken to sensitize and enlighten the populace about the sources of transmission and possible strategies against contacting and transmitting these diseases. Literature shows that lack of knowledge and proper information has led to the death of many teenagers through HIV and AIDS infections. The Nigerian National AIDS Control and Prevention Programme estimate that presently more than 60 percent of new HIV infections occurs among youths between ages 15-19 years.

The need for adequate and accurate information about HIV and AIDS need to be over emphasized. This is vital as it would help to control the spread as well as curb the false beliefs held about the diseases by adolescents. Belief such as that in-school adolescent cannot acquire AIDS and that those with HIV infection cannot live normal life again. Other erroneous beliefs include that adolescents cannot be infected by HIV positive people that are known to them such as their peers when they have sexual relationship with them or have multiple sexual partners.

These false beliefs have contributed in no small measure to the alarming rate of infections and deaths of in-school adolescents due to HIV and AIDS. Presently, medical science and professionals are yet to discover a cure for these diseases which are still claiming lives of youths and making many children orphans due to the loss of parents from the HIV and AIDS diseases. The researcher is poised to ask: Do youths have appropriate knowledge of the nature and sources of transmission of HIV and AIDS? Are they really aware of the preventive measures against the contacting and transmitting of these diseases? It is in view of these concerns that this study was carried out.      


1.3 Purpose of the Study

The main purpose of the study is examine the determinants of HIV and AIDS infections among in-school Adolescents in Giwa Education Zone.

Specifically, the study sought out;

  1. The awareness level of in-school adolescents on mode of transmission of HIV and AIDS disease.
  2. The awareness level of in-school adolescents on source of information on HIV and AIDS disease.
  3. The awareness level of in-school adolescents on preventive strategies against HIV and AIDS disease.

1.4 Significance of the Study

The significance of this study has both theoretical and practical perspectives. The theoretical aspect is concerned with the justification of the relevance of the study to the perspectives of postulation of relevant theories used in this study. The practical significance on the other hand is concerned with the benefits of this research finding on groups of beneficiaries.

1.5 Scope of the Study  

            The study focused on the views of senior secondary in school adolescent   students’ awareness level of sources and preventive strategies for HIV and AIDS. The geographical scope is limited to senior secondary school students in Giwa Education Zone which comprises students drawn from public secondary schools located in both urban and rural. The content scope focused on awareness level of students on sources of transmission of HIV and AIDS disease, source of information on HIV and AIDS disease and preventive strategies against HIV and AIDS diseases.


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