Drug Use On The Rise With Nigerian Women


Published: November 25, 2016

RH Weekly News Roundup –25 November 2016

Drug Use on the Rise with Nigerian Women

Northern Nigeria isn’t the easiest place to live at the moment. Between the terror of Boko Haram, the threat of extreme hunger, health care concerns, and rising prices, life can be difficult. And it may be getting harder still. New reports of drug use are emerging from the area. Who’s using may just surprise you.

Young women are becoming addicted to codeine and pills. Though they tend to stay away from cocaine and other illicit substances, they don’t seem to have any problem getting their hands on cough syrups containing codeine and prescription tablets including Tramadol, Rohypnol and D5. Addiction to any substance, however innocuous it may seem, can do excessive mental and physical damage. Want to know more about drug use in Nigeria? Check out the local organisation, YAFODA-Youth Awareness Forum on Drugs Abuse or Foundation for a Drug Free World now.


Healthy Holiday Habits (Feel Great Rather than Heavy)

With the holidays swiftly approaching, it’s a good time to step back and consider some healthy habits. Really. It’s too easy to get swept away in the festivities and forget that your body needs a little more TLC to make it through the parties and feasts of the season.

Remember to add lots of vegetable colour to each meal, make healthy swaps when you can, and try to remember that it’s not a holiday every day. While you’re at it, make it a goal to consume those eight glasses of water every day, and get plenty of sleep. Want more tips for healthy holiday habits? Check out the Healthy Eating pages now.


Learn Your Status This World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day falls on 1 December annually. It’s a moment to highlight the strides we’ve made – and to refocus efforts to eradicate the spread of this deadly disease. While everyone is tempted to believe that “it won’t happen to them”, that’s simply not the case. And, new infections of HIV/AIDS continue all over the world, every single day. Last year, Nigeria alone claimed more than a quarter of the 150,000 new infections in children.

Throughout Africa, young women are becoming infected at alarming rates, and it’s time for everyone to take a stand against HIV/AIDS. You can help just by adding your voice to the cause. Download a digital toolkit for World AIDS Day, learn more about advocacy and read testimonies at UNAIDS, or donate to the World Aids Day organisation here.


Get Free Health Information Anywhere in Nigeria

If you’re in Nigeria and have an Airtel prepaid sim card, you can access health care information for free. Yep, Human Network International (HNI) has partnered with Airtel to ensure more people have access to important news and information. While the service isn’t limited to health or medical concerns, it’s a step in the right direction.

Better still, information is available in English, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo, and pidgin English. The aim is to assist those in rural areas to gain access to life-saving news and advice. This services is completely free and can be accessed by dialling *321# from a phone loaded with an Airtel prepaid sim card. Why not tweet the news or post it to your Facebook page? You never know who will tell who and the lives you may save.


Celebrating Nigerian Women

Despite all the difficulties facing Nigerian women, there are those that transcend challenges to make an impact on the world. Often their efforts remain unrecognised, but there are women we can’t help but notice. We’re not the only ones.

President Buhari took the time to recognise three Nigerian women making headlines abroad. Sandie Okoro has recently been appointed as the Senior Vice President and General Counsel to the World Bank Group. Two sisters are making headlines in American sports. Nnekadi and Chiney Ogwumike play for the Women’s National Basketball League. All three were recognised by through congratulatory messages in the past week.

And, the BBC has recognised celebrity wedding planner, Funke-Bucknor Obruthe, and infertility foundation creator, Omotade Alalade, in their 2016 list of the most influential women in the world. Well done all!


We Need More Toilettes!

Yes, there’s such a thing as World Toilette Day, and it happens annually on 19 November. It’s not a reminder to clean yours, but rather to bring attention to the numbers of people without access to clean sanitation facilities. It’s a bigger problem than you might imagine. The 2013 National Demographic Health Survey reveals that almost 30 percent of Nigerians have no choice but to practice open defecation. Nearly 40 percent use unimproved latrines.

According to UNICEF, a single gram of faeces contains 10,000,000 viruses 1,000,000 bacteria, and 1,000 parasite cysts. It’s easy to see how open defection leads to the spread of disease and major health concerns – without even considering the dignity aspect of this issue. But, there are those working tirelessly to provide Nigerians greater access to sanitation. Why not read about Nigeria’s Iron Lady now to see just how much impact a little motivation can provide?


Keeping an Eye on Women’s Health Worldwide

You may be tempted to believe that the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America will only impact friends and family living in that country. Or, you may be worried that it impacts travel plans through visa regulations. But, it’s likely to impact women’s health throughout the developing world – including Nigeria.

Within days of assuming office, Trump is likely to reinstate the Global Gag Rule. This policy prohibits any group receiving U.S. aid from providing abortions. The immediate spin-off effect is that organisations providing access to contraceptives and counselling no longer receive funds to operate – unless they cut termination options from their services. Though Nigerian law prohibits abortion, many of the organisations offering other forms of women’s health services will not receive enough funding globally to continue operations. Learn more about the rule and its effect at PAI.

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