Self-Medication Information Sources and Trustworthiness: A Quantitative Assessment of Dir Lower, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Pakistan
This study investigates the primary sources of information used by individuals for self-medication and evaluate their perceived trustworthiness, thereby providing insights into the influence of information sources on self-medication behavior and health decision-making. Adopting Quantitative Methodology and Cross-sectional Design, data was collected from individuals frequently engaging in self-medication for common health issues such as headaches, colds, allergies, or minor injuries. Stratified Random Sampling yielded a sample size of 366 respondents from a pool of 75,00 patients across Dir Lower seven tehsil hospitals. A structured interview schedule facilitated data collection, covering demographics, self-medication practices, information sources, trustworthiness perceptions, and health outcomes. Analysis involved SPSS for frequency and percentage as a descriptive and Chi-square Test for inferential statistics. The study shows that people prefer getting health information from both informal (family and friends) and formal (healthcare professionals and the internet) sources. Trust in these sources varies depending on how credible they seem. People are willing to self-medicate, especially for certain conditions, influenced by factors like limited healthcare access, trust in self-medication sources, and cultural beliefs. Many respondents are confident in finding and understanding health information for self-medication. This research underscores the importance of cultural and social factors in healthcare decisions, highlighting the need for tailored interventions and education programs to address local dynamics in Dir Lower, KP, Pakistan.
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