Adolescents’ Willingness and Intentions to Use Contraceptives in Rural Ghana


Efforts made to improve the availability and access to family planning services to adolescents in Ghana have not yielded the desired results. Adolescents in the Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance System area are no exception. This study explored contraceptive use intentions, preferences and their determinants among adolescents in rural Ghana. This was to contribute evidence towards achieving universal access to reproductive health. A cross-sectional study design was used to collect Sexual and Reproductive Health data in the Kintampo districts in 2011. A total of 1805 female adolescents were randomly sampled from a resident female adolescent population of 16,795. This study used intention and/or willingness of adolescents to use contraceptives as the outcome variable and the explanatory variables were demographic and socioeconomic factors. Descriptive and inferential statistical analyses were done. The findings indicated 54.3% of adolescents’ were willing to use contraceptives. Injectable was the most preferred contraceptive method among adolescents (48.6%); this was followed by the pill (29.6%) with the least being foam or jelly (0.2%). The most commonly cited reason for not intending to use contraception was adolescents’ opposition to family planning (31.5%) followed by a fear of side effects (25.8%). Age and education influenced adolescents’ willingness to use contraceptives in the future. Formal education of the young generation coupled with knowledge of contraceptive methods could yield positive outcomes for contraceptive use and ultimately reproductive health of the adolescent population in the near future.

Share and Cite:

Abubakari, S. , Enuameh, Y. , Mahama, E. , Nettey, O. , Adjei, G. , Nuamah, G. , Anane, E. , Adda, R. , Dzabeng, F. , Amenga-Etego, S. , Zandoh, C. , Asante, K. and Owusu-Agyei, S. (2015) Adolescents’ Willingness and Intentions to Use Contraceptives in Rural Ghana. Open Journal of Social Sciences, 3, 239-249. doi: 10.4236/jss.2015.311029.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] Elissa, K., Natalie, G., Peter, A. and Mick, C. (2011) Adolescent Fertility and Family Planning in East Asia and the Pacific: A Review of DHS Reports. Reproductive Health, 8.
[2] Guttmacher Institute (2010) Facts on Sexual and Reproductive Health of Adolescent Women in the Developing World. In Brief. New York.
[3] Singh, S. (1998) Adolescent Childbearing in Developing Countries: A Global Review. Studies in Family Planning, 29, 117-136.
[4] Singh, S., Darroch, J., Ashford, L. and Vlassoff, M. (2009) Adding It up: The Costs and Benefits of Investing in Family Planning and Maternal and Newborn Health. Guttmacher Institute and United Nations Population Fund, New York.
[5] United Nations (2002) World Population Monitoring 2002—Reproductive Rights and Reproductive Health: Selected Aspects. Department of Economic and Social Affairs Population Division, New York.
[6] Blanc, A.K. and Way, A.A. (1998) Sexual Behavior and Contraceptive Knowledge and Use among Adolescents in Developing Countries. Studies in Family Planning, 29, 106-116.
[7] WHO (2015) Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health: Adolescent Development.
[8] WHO (2003) Preparing for Adulthood: Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health. Progress in Reproductive Health Research, 64, 1-2.
[9] James-Troare, T.A. (2001) Developmentally Based Interventions and Strategies: Promoting Reproductive Health and Reducing Risk among Adolescents. Focus on Young Adults.
[10] Padmavati, M., Sulakhe, R. and Panda, S.K. (2014) Prevalence of RTI/STI Symptoms among Adolescent Girls in an Urban Slum of Sambalpur. Perspectives in Medical Research, 2, 21-23.
[11] Abdul-Rahman, L., Marrone, G. and Johansson, A. (2011) Trends in Contraceptive Use among Female Adolescents in Ghana. African Journal of Reproductive Health, 15, 45-55.
[12] Ghana Statistical Service (2012) 2010 Population and Housing Census Summary Report of Final Results. May, 2012.
[13] Kintampo Health Research Centre (2012) Annual Report.
[14] UNFPA, State of the World Population (2014) The Power of 1.8 Billion Adolescents, Youth and the Transformation of the Future. UNFPA, New York.
[15] Ghana Statistical Service, Ghana Health Service (GHS) and ICF Macro (2009) Ghana Demographic and Health Survey 2008. GSS, GHS, and ICF Macro, Accra.
[16] Senderowitz, J. (1999) Making Reproductive Health Services Youth Friendly. Focus on Young Adults, Pathfinder International, Washington DC.
[17] MDG 5B (2010) A Promise Is a Promise. Universal Access to Reproductive Health.
[18] Owusu-Agyei, S., Nettey, O.E.A., Zandoh, C., Sulemana, A., Adda, R., Amenga-Etego, S. and Mbacke, C. (2012) Demographic Patterns and Trends in Central Ghana: Baseline Indicators from the Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance System. Global Health Action, 5, 1-11.
[19] Enuameh, Y., Nettey, O.E., Mahama, E., Tawiah, C., Boamah, E., Sulemana, A., Adjei, G., Gyaase, S., Asiedu, S.A., Manu, A., Zandoh, C., Asante, K.P. and Owusu-Agyei, S. (2015) Family Planning Needs of Adolescents in Predominantly Rural Communities in the Central Part of Ghana. Open Journal of Preventive Medicine, 5, 269-279.
[20] StataCorp LP (2009) Statistics/Data Analysis. StataCorp 4905 Lakeway Drive, College Station.
[21] Smith, R., Ashford, L., Gribble, J. and Clifton, D. (2009) Family Planning Saves Lives. 4th Edition, Population Reference Bureau, Washington DC.
[22] National Population Commission (NPC) and ICF Macro (2009) Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey 2008. National Population Commission and ICF Macro, Abuja.
[23] Ministry of Health Ghana and Population Council (2005) Ghana Trend Analysis for Family Planning Services 1993, 1996, 2002. ORC Macro, Calverton, MD.
[24] Fakeye, O. and Babaniyi, O. (1989) Reasons for Non-Use of Family Planning Methods at Ilorin, Nigeria: Male Opposition and Fear of Methods. Tropical Doctor, 19, 114-117.
[25] Bertrand, J.T., Mangani, N., Mansilu, M. and Landry, E.G. (2012) The Use of Factors Influencing Traditional versus Modern Family Methods in Bas Zaire. Studies in Family Planning, 16, 332-341.
[26] Chipeta, E.K., Chimwaza, W. and Kalilani-Phiri, L. (2010) Contraceptive Knowledge, Beliefs and Attitudes in Rural Malawi: Misinformation, Misbeliefs and Misperceptions. Malawi Medical Journal: The Journal of Medical Association of Malawi, 22, 38-41.
[27] Odimwengu, C.O. (1999) Family Planning Attitude and Use in Nigeria: A Factor Analysis. International Family Planning Perspectives, 25, 86-91.
[28] Orji, E.O. and Onwudiegwu, U. (2002) Prevalence and Determinants of Contraceptive Practice in a Defined Nigerian Population. Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 22, 540-543.
[29] Shapiro, D. and Tambase, B.O. (1994) The Impact of Women’s Employment and Education on Contraceptive Use and Abortion in Kinshasa, Zaire. Studies in Family Planning, 25, 96-110.
[30] Gage, A.J. (1995) Women’s Socioeconomic Position and Contraceptive Behavior in Togo. Studies in Family Planning, 26, 264-277.
[31] Larsen, U. and Hollos, M. (2003) Women’s Empowerment and Fertility Decline among the Pare of Kilimanjaro Region, Northern Tanzania. Social Science & Medicine, 57, 1099-1115.
[32] Keele, J.J., Forste, R. and Flake, D.F. (2005) Hearing Native Voices: Contraceptive Use in Matemwe Village, East Africa. African Journal of Reproductive Health, 9, 32-41.
[33] Mubita-Ngoma, C. and Kadantu, C. (2010) Knowledge and Use of Modern Family Planning Methods by Rural Women in Zambia. Curationis, 33, 17-22.

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.