Aim: To assess the barriers to help seeking for psychosis among adolescent students in Lagos Nigeria.
Study Design and Methodology: Using a cross-sectional study design, 156 adolescent students attending a public co-educational secondary school in Lagos, south-West Nigeria completed a vignette-based questionnaire which assessed barriers to help-seeking for psychosis. The vignette depicted an adolescent with psychosis (schizophrenia).
Results: The mean age of the participating students was 15.9 (±1.1) years and 49% were males.The most frequently reported barrier to help-seeking was stigma (42.5%). Others included illness- related barriers (23.0%), disapproval by friends/families (15.8%), negative perceptions about treatment (9.4%), preference for spiritual cure (7.2%), financial constraints (7.2%), and ‘not knowing what to do’ (5.8%).
Conclusion: Potentially modifiable barriers especially stigma, disapproval by social network and misperceptions about treatment hinder help-seeking for psychosis among the studied adolescents.