W3 Activity: Brain Fag Syndrome among Nigerian students

For this week’s activity, I found an article that documents the pertinence of brain fag syndrome among college students at The University of Abuja in Nigeria. RH Prince first discovered brain fag syndrome in the year 1960. To investigate further, they had documentation of both high school and university student’s experiences symptoms such as somatic, sleep-related, cognitive complaints, neck and head pain, difficultly retaining information, and also eye pain. The article explains how this is a culture bound syndrome and rarely seen in western culture. They describe the cause of the syndrome to be from imposition of alien Western learning techniques on non-Western students. The article then explains the research methods used for the study which included a cross sectional study in which 600 students (third and fourth year) were selected at random. The data was collected as a questionnaire and then analyzed using SPSS-16. The results of the study were compared with certain problems such as poor finances. The results also showed that brain fag syndrome was more prevalent in males, and was associated a lot with the use of psychoactive substances. Beyond proving that this syndrome was prevalent among students, the study also proved that the syndrome is an entity of its own, making it a culture bound syndrome.

Biologically, it showed that this syndrome cannot be passed down but it is pertinent in this part of the world because the circumstances. It is common in college culture, regardless of where you are, to suffer from stress and or anxiety because of the dynamics of studying and school as a whole. Obviously this syndrome is very apparent in this culture, which explains why it is so common. From an individual standpoint, this syndrome causes a lot of students to have to drop out of school due to the frustrations. It affects many people as whole trying to receive and education. This syndrome has evolved because it has gotten worse in time. Treatments for this illness include psychiatry, talking to behavior health specialists, neuromusculoskeletal medicine, and many more. Because the majority of the people in this culture that go to college have adequate funds, it is possible for at least some of them to receive proper medical care for brain fag syndrome.

Uchendu, Ifedlilchukwu U., Eze U. Chikezie, and Olufemi Morakinyo. “Brain fag syndrome among Nigerian university students in Abuja.” Journal of Psychiatry and Brain Functions 1 (2014). http://www.hoajonline.com/psychiatry/2055-3447/1/1.

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