Human reproduction if left unplanned could result in high birth rate, resulting in large family sizes with negative effect on the health of mothers and children. The study was conducted to identify the type of family planning methods used by male and female traders of Calabar South Local Government Area, Cross River State, Nigeria. Descriptive cross-sectional research design was adopted for the study. The sample size consisted of 158 traders of Anantigha community beach market in Calabar South LGA selected using convenient sampling technique. A structured validated research questionnaire with reliability coefficient of 0.87 was used to obtain data. Data obtained was analyzed using descriptive statistics. The mean (SD) age of respondents was 34.6 ± 20.8; 105(66.5%) were females, 74(46.8%) were married and 86(54.4%) had attained tertiary educational level. Findings showed that 112(70.9%) preferred modern family planning method while 46(29.1%) preferred traditional family planning methods. The findings also showed that the most utilized family planning method among the female respondents were; Combined oral contraceptives (COCs) or “the pill” 71(67.6%) and female condoms 65 (61.9%). With respect to male respondents, 6(11.3%) utilized vasectomy, 15(28.3%) utilized withdrawal or coitus interruptus while 32(60.4%) preferred using condom. The factors influencing preference for family planning methods among male and female traders of Calabar South LGA were; long duration (91.8%); little knowledge about family planning methods (77.2%) and prohibition from cultural belief (37.3%) but 103(65.2%) had no support from spouse. The result revealed a statistically significant relationship between gender and preference for family planning. It was concluded that though the awareness of contraception was high, its utilization was low. Based on the findings of the study, it was therefore recommended among others that educational forums should be set up for traders where they will receive useful family planning information.
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UTILIZATION OF FAMILY PLANNING METHODS BY MALE AND FEMALE TRADERS IN CALABAR SOUTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, CROSS RIVER STATE, NIGERIA