Psychology of Individual Noncompliance with Prevention and Treatment Measures: A Mirror of Reactance Theory

Authors

  • Ransome Msughve Labe Department of Clinical Psychology, Federal Medical Center Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria.
  • Perpetua Ngosoo Chia Department of Clinical Psychology, Federal Medical Center Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria.
  • Terdoo Nyuitsa Department of Clinical Psychology, Federal Medical Center Makurdi, Benue State, Nigeria.

Keywords:

Covid-19, Individual noncompliance, Prevention and Treatment, Reactance theory

Abstract

This paper provides a picture of the psychology of individual noncompliance with prevention and treatment measures of covid-19 in Nigeria. Countries are relentlessly battling covid-19 to save the citizens through medical intervention and human social behaviour policies that would help in the prevention of spread of the virus. Unfortunately, the level of Nigerians’ cooperation to enable the government to control the transmission of covid-19 is appallingly unimpressive. Evidently, Nigerians’ resistant attitude to comply with the transmission prevention rules reflects the concept behind the reactance theory. The reactance theory posits that individuals believe that they possess certain freedoms to engage in the so-called free behaviour. Yet, there are times they cannot, or at least feel that they cannot, do so. When they observe that their freedom to do as they desired is threatened, psychological reactance emerges. The amount of reactance depends on the importance of the perceived threatened freedom and perceived magnitude of the threat.Nigerians have chosen not only to deny the existence of covid-19 but also have decisivelyrefused to comply with the government covid-19 transmission prevention rules. This disobedient attitude to covid-19 prevention protocol suggests a reactive behaviour towards restoration of perceived infringement of their freedom to live life as they prefer. By the way, Nigerians believe that death is in the hands of God and they are not going to die of covid-9 disease. This false confidence persuading the peoples’ negative response to covid-19can help the government and health managers understanding to strengthen health policy and measures on disease control in future outbreaks.

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Published

2024-01-17

How to Cite

Psychology of Individual Noncompliance with Prevention and Treatment Measures: A Mirror of Reactance Theory. (2024). NIGERIAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY, 11(1&2), 51-59. http://nacpjournal.org.ng/index.php/nacp/article/view/13

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