Background of the Study
Family planning allows people to attain their desired number of children and determine the spacing of pregnancies. It is achieved through use of contraceptive methods and the treatment of infertility (WHO Factsheet No 351, 2012). Promotion of family Planning, and ensuring access to preferred contraceptive methods for women and couples, is essential to securing the wellbeing and autonomy of women while supporting the health and development of communities.
The benefit of family planning are numerous, including preventing pregnancy-related health risks in women, such as material mortality which increases as women have more children after the 4th one. By reducing the rates of unintended pregnancies. Family planning also reduces the need for unsafe abortion. Other benefits according to WHO factsheet no 351 (2012) include reducing infant mortality, helping women to prevent HIV/AIDs, empowering people and enhancing education, reducing adolescent pregnancies and slowing population growth. Concerning family planning, is key to slowing down unsustainable population growth and resulting negative impacts on the economy, environment, national and regional development efforts.
Globally an estimated 222 million women in developing counties would like to delay child bearing but are not using any method of contraception. Some of the reasons are limited choice of methods, access to contraception, particularly among young people, pooer segment of population fear or experiences of side effects, cultural or religions opposition poor quality of available services and gender based barriers etc.
The unmet need for contraception remains too high thus unequity is fuelled by both a growing population, and a shortage of family planning services. In Africa 53% of women of reproductive age have an unmet need for modern concentration. In Asia and Latin America and the carri bean the levels of unmet needs are 21% and 22% respectively.
The rapid growth of the worlds population over the past one hundred years results form a difference between the rate of birth and the rate of death. In today’s world, owns to improved nutrition, sanitation, and enhance care, more children survive their first five years of life. The combination of a continuing high birth rate and a how death rate is creating a rapid population increase in many counties in Asia, Latin America and Africa. Over population refers to the conduction of having more people than can live on the earth in comfort, happiness and health and still live a world a fit place for future generation (Kinder, 2013)
It took the entire history of human kind for the population to reach 1 billion around 1810. Just 120 years later, this doubled to 2 billion in 1930, then 4 billion in 1975 (45 years later). The number of people in the world has risen form 4.4 billion in 1980 to 5.8 billion. Its estimated that the population could double again to nearly 11 billion in less than 40 years (2020). This means that more people are now being added each day than any other time in human history (Kinder, 2013). According to UNFPA estimations the total population is likely to reach 10 billion by 2025 and from to 14 billion by the end of the next century unless birth control use increase dramatically around the world within the next two decate (Kinder, 2013).
The commonest population characteristics which have implications for population growth are birth rates and death rates and both have fallen in many places.
However, death rates have fallen faster than birth rates. It I s estimated that there are about 1.6 births for each death in more developed nations and 3.3 birth for each death in less developed nations the results is that the world population continuances to grow.
In Nigeria, as well other nations in sub-Saharan Africa, the population growth rate is highest in the world, with an arrange of 2 86% annually (Mustapha, 2008). Nigeria estimate is about 3.0% (NDHS, 2008) with such a rate of growth, Nigeria has becomes the most populous country in Africa and occupies prominent position among the world counties in terms of population. We are already facing population explosion in Nigeria.
The consequences of over population/ population explosion are all too obvious. Population grows fastest in the worlds poorest counties high fertility rates have been strongly correlated with poverty and high child/ mortality rates. Conversely, falling fertility rates are generally associated with improved standards of living, increased life expectance and lowered infant mortality over population and poverty have long been associated with increased diseases death, and, people high packed into unsanitary housing are inordinately vulnerable to natural disasters and health problems (Kinder, 2013).
Population control is the practicing artificially altering the growth rate of the population historically, human populations control has been implemented by limiting the population birth rate, usually, government mandate and has been undertaken as a response to factors including higher increasing levels o f poverty, environmental concerns religions reason and over population world wide. Population control movement are driving reproductive health and family planning programmes. (Kindsen, 2006). Contraception is one of the major method of populations control.
Population control through various forms of family planning have been postulated and practiced throughout history from the earliest times. Some methods include abstinences contraceptive measures abortions and even killing of children. Many nations have also been able to control on stabilize their population and economic polices through various family planning regulations such as the one child policy of China, privilege given to people with few chidden in india, mandatory contraceptive course before marriage license in Iran and so forth (Dewey, 2004).
Statement of the Problem
Many developing counties like Korea, Brazil Columbia, China, India and Bangladesh have successfully applied family planning programs as a means of over coming rapid population growth (World Bank Annual report 2004) Nigeria has also adopted family planning as a strategy to curb the hight rate of population growth that, it is experiencing now. However the adoption rate of family planning practices is till low (Duzer Mohammed 2006). Fertility rate in Nigeria in 6.3 for rural and 4.5 for urban (NDHS), 2008 women still have about 6 children on the average.
According to the USAID report (2009) high fertility is a major factor contributing to the challenges of meeting the MDGs in Nigeria and African counties, a situation which is more in the rural areas due to the low literacy level of women and their poor early power. Nigeria, with a population or of 140 million (NPC 2007) has become the largest country in Africa in terms of population.
The population growth rate is 3.0%/ NDHS (2008) the result of rapid and over population is huger, inadequate water supply, increasing number of people in need of health care, education economic and other amnesties which are not enough. There are also many social vices even in Auaocha LGA.
Large families are observed especially where they have only girl children. Nigeria still loses about 150 women daily from pregnancy related causes, in spite of over 30 years of safe motherhood emphases and intervention (Oguji 2010). The story is the same in Anaocha LGA. The researcher observed a young poor couple with six children. She also witnessed the death of two women form Adazi- Enu in Anaocha LGA as a result of post pattern in haemorrahge after their 7th delivery.
All these made the researcher to wonder if women of child bearing age in Anaocha LGA have adequate knowledge of family planning and are practicing it, if so whether they are using the appropriate methods. This has prompted the researcher to study knowledge and practices family planning among women of child bearing age in Anaocha LGA
Purpose of the study
Purpose of this study is to assess the knowledge and family planning practices of women of child bearing age of Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State.
Specifically, the objectives are to:
- Assess the knowledge of women of child bearing age of Anaocha LGA about family planning.
- Identify the methods of family planning in use in Anaocha LGA.
- Determine the patterns of practice of family planning methods.
- Determine the influencing factors to the utilization of family planning methods.
- Establish relationship between method of family planning in use and socio demographic factors.
- What knowledge do the rural women of child bearing age in Anaocha Local Government Area have about family planning?
- What are the family planning methods in use by women of child bearing age in Anaocha LGA?
- What are the patterns of family planning practice of rural women of child bearing age?
- What are the influencing factors to the methods in use?
- What are the relationship between methods of family planning in use and social demographic factors?
Significance of the study
Findings from this study will help to discover the weakness in the knowledge and family planning practices of the child bearing women. This will help health personnel, professionals and individuals who work in this area especially nurses whom are always in contact with the clients, in counselling and educating the child bearing women on family planning, especially nurses whom are always in contact with the clients. This strategy will increase knowledge, utilization of family planning methods and thus reduction in high risk pregnancies and their consequences.
Finally, the findings from this study will add to the existing body of knowledge on reproductive health and stimulate further research on the topic and related area.
Scope of the study
The study is delimited to women of child bearing age 15-49 years of Anaocha Local Government Area who live in the rural area. It is also delimited to assessing the knowledge and family planning practices of women of child bearing age. Specifically, it is delimited to identifying the methods, patterns of practice, influencing factors to the use of family planning and the relationship between methods and some socio-demographic characteristics.
Operational definitions of terms in this study
Knowledge of family planning refers: – to factual information about family planning- to identify methods correctly, /techniques of family planning, benefits and sources of information.