Determinants of Risky Sexual Behavior among Secondary and Preparatory School Students in Dire Dawa City, Ethiopia

Dawit Daniel


Youth are exposed to risk behavior which includes unsafe sex, drug abuse & alcohol and also there are different factors which are associated with their risk behaviors. The main objective of this study is to identify behavioral risk factors for HIV/AIDS among high school students of Dire Dawa city. A cross-sectional school-based design using stratified random sampling technique was employed. Data collection was done using self-administered questionnaire among 840 adolescent high school students. Data analysis involved univariate analysis, bivariate analysis followed by multiple logistic regression analysis to identify determinants of unsafe sexual practice. The findings revealed that 392(48.3%) of respondents had sex. The mean age at first sex was 16.6(+0.84) and 15.6(+0.9) years for males and females respectively. The risk of unsafe sex was high among male students [AOR=13.176, 95% CI (3.894, 44.586)] and those using substance & alcohol [AOR=2.098, 95% CI (1.386, 3.17)] whereas the risk was less among students not watching pornography [AOR=0.098, 95% CI (0.023, 0.419)] and earning better income [AOR=0.85, 95% CI (0.025, 0.289)]. Female students started sexual practice earlier than their male counterpart and half of the students are engaged on unsafe sex which requires urgent intervention. Therefore stakeholders has to increase connections between students and their schools through the use of media. Furthermore they should work towards making communities safe and supportive for youth development.

Keywords: Adolescents, Risky Behaviors, HIV/AIDS, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia

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