n IFE PsychologIA : An International Journal - Brain fag syndrome among Nigerian undergraduates : present status and association with personality and psychosocial factors




The study investigated the current prevalence of the Brain Fag Syndrome (BFS) and its relationship with personality and psychosocial variables among randomly selected students in a Nigerian university. The Brain Fag Syndrome Scale (BFSS), Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ), 30-item version of the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-30) and a questionnaire on sociodemographic variables were administered on 2600 undergraduates. The questionnaires of 2508 respondents were analysed using simple percentage, Pearson's r correlation, Chi-square test and Student t-test. The findings show that the prevalence rate of the syndrome was 38.9% in the study population. There were significant positive correlations between the BFS and the Neuroticism and Psychoticism factors of the EPQ but not with the Extroversion - introversion dimension. The GHQ-30 was also positively correlated with the BFSS. Also, respondents who were positive for the BFS were more likely to report financial strain and rate their physical health poorer than those who were negative. However, significant differences were not observed between the two groups on gender, type of family, place of domicile, level of study and on whether the relationship between their parents was strained or not. The findings give more insight into the complex mechanisms involved in the generation of the BFS and have implications for preventive psychiatry.


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