Pattern of skin lightening cosmetics use and perceived risk of skin cancer among undergraduate students of university of Ibadan, Nigeria

Abstract


1Ohaeri Beatrice and Ajani Funmi Oluyemi

Background: Skin lightening cosmetics use has been a practice that cut across various populations across the world and Nigerians have been reported to be the highest users. However, various complications have been documented with prolong use of the product ranging from mild reactions such as exogenous ochronosis to severe cases like skin cancer. The study however assessed the pattern of use of skin lightening cosmetics among the undergraduate students of University of Ibadan, Nigeria. Method: A descriptive cross-sectional study design was adopted using a simple random and systematic sampling technique with self-administered questionnaire to 365 respondents who met the eligibility criteria and consented to participate. Statistical analyses were done. Numeric variables were frequencies, percentages, means and Chi-square at p= 0.05. Results: the mean age of the respondents was 20.0 ± 2.93 years. 41.4% of the respondents were aware of the toxic components of skin lightening cosmetics. Although, 45.2% opined they used it ignorantly. About 11.8% claimed they use it in the last 3 months and 36.6% claimed experiencing early symptoms of its adverse effects. Conclusion: About average of the student population ignorantly use cosmetics containing banned chemicals with consequent adverse effects. Policy restricting the use of toxic cosmetics is therefore recommended.

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