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Background- Prevalence of major depression among university students in Western Africa is 25.2%. The objectives of this study were to determine the level of knowledge of major depression among undergraduate clinical students. This will include the causes, risk factors, symptoms, and treatment options available to depressed patients; to ascertain the perception of clinical students towards depression i.e., treatment options and to determine the preventive measures against any incident of suicide as a result of depression in the University community.
Methods- This study was a descriptive cross-sectional prospective study. Validated structured questionnaires were self -administered to 275 undergraduate clinical students.
Results- Majority of respondents (64.3%) were 18-25 years of age, 71.4% were males. About 66.5% of the respondents said major depression is a mental condition characterized by severe feelings of hopelessness and inadequacy. About 62.5% said abuse of alcohol or recreational drugs is a risk factor of major depression. About 85.9% of the respondents know the treatment options for major depression.
Conclusion- Majority of the respondents have good level of knowledge and perception of major depression. Measures to be taken in preventing this mental disorder in the University includes inculcating psychological living into the curriculum and improvement in the teaching and learning condition of students. Coordinated mental health services to meet the needs of university students is recommended.
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