Information Sources and Use of Traditional Medicine Among Farmers
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Abstract on Information Sources and Use of Traditional Medicine Among Farmers
The study examined the information sources and use of traditional medicine among farmers in Edo and Delta States, Nigeria. It examined the accessibility of information to the farmers, some ailment that affect agricultural production, seriousness of the ailment on production, reasons for respondents use of traditional medicine perceived effectiveness of traditional medicine in treating ailment, the constraints facing the farmers in production and the constraints facing the farmers in accessing and using of traditional medicine in the study areas. Simple random sampling procedure was used in the study to select the respondents each from three communities in Edo State which yielded 120 respondents and 5 communities in Delta State which yielded 100 respondents using well structured questionnaire to obtain data. The demographic characteristic considered in the study were sex, age, marital status, religion, education, farm size. Farming experience, household size, labour force, membership of cooperative/association, social group belong to, leadership experience, frequency of contact with traditional medicine in the study area was considered Descriptive Statistics, Chi-square, T-test, frequency distribution counts, mean and Spearmen rho’s correlation were employed in data analysis and the finding reveal that the major information, sources, radio (mean=2.80), television (mean = 2.68), neighbors (mean = 2.65), fellow farmers (mean = 2.20) and extension agencies (mean = 2.11) were the most effective sources of information.
Also, most ailment such as malaria, cough, diabetes, high blood pressure, joint and back pain, hepatitis, dysentery, ulcer, indigestion and pneumonia had effect on the farmers in both Edo and Delta States respectively. In Edo and Delta States, the findings revealed that ailment affected the farm size, yield and income after ailments. Seriousness of the ailment in Edo and Delta States was seen during weeding (mean = 2.66), (mean 2.57) respectively. Reasons for farmers use of traditional medicine was revealed to be due to the fact that it is affordable, cheap, culturally-based, non-addictive, accessible, natural, abundant with no side effect or allergies. The study also reveal that traditional medicine was effective in the treatment of cough (mean = 2.70), diabetes (mean 2.63) and malaria (mean = 2.50) in Edo State while in Delta State, traditional medicine was effective for treating cough (mean = 2.95), diabetes (mean = 2.43) and also malaria (mean = 2.50). The most serious constraints in production for Edo and Delta States were related to lack of good roads (mean = 4.86), low income (mean = 4.75), no reliable source of water (mean = 4.73), low yield (mean = 4.58), lack of information on traditional medicine (mean = 4.50), time diverted to caring for the sick (mean = 4.44) illiteracy (mean = 4.49), lack of power (mean = 4.35), reduced labour (mean = 4.18), absenteeism fro work (mean = 4.12). The same result was also recorded for Delta State. All the constraints related to access and uses of traditional medicine were serious in both Edo and Delta States with a mean greater than 3.00. It is recommended that more awareness in the aspect of information on traditional medicine be given high priority to improve the access of farmers to traditional medicine.
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