Study on perception and practice about self medication among the women of selected rural area of West Bengal.

Debdatta Mandal, Kasturi Mandal


Background: According to William Osler, a great feature which distinguishes man from animals is the desire to take medicine1. Objectives: To assess the perception and practice about the self medication patterns among the women. Methods: A non – experimental descriptive study conducted on Perception and Practice about self medication among the women of selected rural area. Data were collected by semi structured interview schedule from 200 rural women of 18 years or above of selected rural area of West Bengal. Sample were selected by the non – probability purposive sampling technique. Results: Among the 200 sample 146 women practiced the self medication. Maximum of the participant (87%) had perception regarding meaning of self medication. Maximum (64.38%) of the participants used the self medication they wanted quick relief from the problems. Maximum participants (94.52%) used the self medication according to advice of medicine shop keepers. Study findings revealed that perception of self medication was significantly associated with the educational status as evidenced by chi square value [X2 (df=6) = 14.34, p <0.05 ]. It also revealed that reason of practice of self medication was significantly associated with the educational status [X2 (df=30) = 114.74, p <0.05 ] and occupation [X2 (df=10) = 25.14, p <0.05 ]. And checking the name and expiry date of the drug during self medication both were also associated with the educational status [X2 (df=6) = 33.79, p <0.05 ] & occupation [X2 df=6) = 31.51, p <0.05]. Conclusion: This study reflects that most of the women had wrong perception regarding self medication due to low educational status. It was facilitated by the easy availability of drugs and information from previous prescriptions

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