Gender Differences in the Sexual and Reproductive Health of Adolescents Aged 15-19 Years in Nigeria
Olaronke Ladipo, Harvard University
Gender differences in sexual behaviour exist hence programs should address the social context in which teenagers engage in sexual relationships. This paper explores gender differences in the sexual and reproductive behavior of adolescents aged 15-19 years in Nigeria. Data was obtained from a nationally representative household based survey of females aged 15-49 and males aged 15-64 years living in rural and urban areas. More girls than boys were married (10:1) and almost twice the numbers of girls were sexually active although boys were five times more likely to have multiple concurrent partners. Girls were less confident to discuss contraception with their partners, had less knowledge about sexually transmitted infections and HIV/AIDS and estimated their risk to HIV to be lower than the boys. Significantly more boys than girls believed that abstinence, faithfulness or partner reduction and condom usage would prevent them from contacting HIV.