Knowledge of Childhood Diarrhoea and Home-Based Care Practices in a Rural Community in Northern Nigeria


  • Garba I Department of Community Medicine, Kaduna State University
  • Kure SI Department of Community Medicine, Kaduna State University
  • Daikwo J Epidemiology Unit, Department of Public Health, Kaduna State Ministry of Health, Nigeria
  • Ganiyu J National AIDS, Viral Hepatitis and STI Control Program, Department of Public Health, Federal Ministry of Health, Abuja, Nigeria.



Caregiver, Under-fives, diarrhoea, Home –based, knowledge, Northern Nigeria


Background: Diarrhoeal is a major public health problem among under five children (U5) in developing countries.  This survey assesses knowledge of childhood diarrhoea and home-based care practices among caregivers for U5 children in a rural community in North Western Nigeria

Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study among of 244 mother/caregivers of under-five children in a rural Gangara community between July- August 2022 using a systematic random sampling technique and a structured, interviewer administered questionnaire. The outcome variables for bivariate (chi square) analysis were the knowledge grade for diarrhoea, while the explanatory variables was the socio-demographic characteristics of the caregivers.  Data were analysed with statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) version 26.  The level of statistical significance was set at p<0.05.

Results: The knowledge score for mode of transmission of diarrhoea and danger signs for dehydration were 70.5%, and 47.5% respectively. One third of the caregivers could not identify sunken eyeball 79 (32.4%) and tearlessness 110 (45.1%) as signs of dehydration. The common diarrhea home-based care practices were the use of ORS (98.8%), herbal concoction, (48.8%) and salt sugar solution (17.6%). Some caregivers would treat under-five diarrhoea at home with lomotil 115 (47.1%) ciprofloxacin 44 (18%) and metronidazole (34.8%). Only 54 (22%) caregivers would go to the hospital immediately they noticed symptoms of diarrhoea.

Conclusion: The knowledge of diarrhoea was poor and most home-based care practices were unconventional. Hence, the burden of diarrhoea disease was high. The LGA health authorities should facilitate continuous health education programs on diarrhoea diseases in this community


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How to Cite

OYEFABI, A. M., Ishaya, G., Shekwonyadu, K., Daikwo, J., & Ganiyu, J. (2023). Knowledge of Childhood Diarrhoea and Home-Based Care Practices in a Rural Community in Northern Nigeria. The Nigerian Health Journal, 23(2), 654–665.



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