Wednesday January 22, 2020

Cigarette Smoking Associated with Poor Mental Health: Researchers

In light of the new findings, the researchers said they would like to see policymakers take into account mental health effects of smoking, as well

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If boys start smoking pot in early teenage life, they may be at a higher risk of developing drug problem as a young adult, a new study has said.
Early smoking can lead to drug problems in boys. Pixabay

Researchers have found that smoking not only causes physical damage, but is also detrimental to mental health.

According to the study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, the research team from Hebrew University of Jerusalem, University of Belgrade and University of Pristina together, surveyed more than 2,000 students enrolled at Serbian universities with differing socio-political and economic environments.

They found that students who smoked had rates of clinical depression that were twice to three times higher than did their non-smoking peers.

“Our study adds to the growing body of evidence that smoking and depression are closely linked,” while it may be too early to say that smoking causes depression, tobacco does appear to have an adverse effect on our mental health,” said study lead author Hagai Levine at Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel.

According to the researchers, specifically, at the University of Pristina, 14 per cent of smokers suffered from depression as opposed to four per cent of their non-smoking peers, and at Belgrade University the numbers were 19 per cent to 11 per cent, respectively.

smoking
Smoker’s Face– a condition where smokers look older than they are, is just one of many negative effects caused by heavy Smoking, researchers have warned. Pixabay

Further, no matter what their economic or socio-political backgrounds, students who smoked also had higher rates of depressive symptoms and lower mental health scores (such as, vitality and social functioning) compared to non-smoking students.

In light of the new findings, the researchers said they would like to see policymakers take into account mental health effects of smoking, as well.

Also Read: One Sleepless Night Could Contribute to Alzheimer’s Disease: Research

“I urge universities to advocate for their students’ health by creating ‘Smoke-Free Campuses’ that not only ban smoking on campus but tobacco advertising, too,” Levine said.

“Combined with policies that prevent, screen and treat mental health problems, including addiction, these steps would go a long way towards combating the harmful effects that smoking has on our physical and mental states,” Levine added. (IANS)

Next Story

Prenatal Smoking, Drinking Increases SIDS Risk; Says New Study

According to the researchers, these risks were in comparison to infants who were either not exposed to tobacco or alcohol during gestation or whose mothers quit tobacco or alcohol use by the end of the first trimester

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Effects of smoking
Excessive smoking can increase the chances of looking old as well. Pixabay

Children born to mothers who drank and smoked beyond the first three months of pregnancy have 12-fold increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), says a new study.

SIDS is the sudden, unexplained, death of an infant under one year of age. Many studies have shown that the risk of SIDS is increased by maternal smoking during pregnancy.

Some studies have also found that prenatal alcohol exposure, particularly from heavy drinking during pregnancy, can increase SIDS risk.

The findings, published in the journal The Lancet, provide a look at how SIDS risk is influenced by the timing and amount of prenatal exposure to tobacco and alcohol.

“Our findings suggest that combined exposures to alcohol and tobacco have a synergistic effect on SIDS risk, given that dual exposure was associated with substantially higher risk than either exposure alone,” said said first author Amy J Elliot from Avera Health Centre for Pediatric and Community in US.

For the findings, researchers followed the outcomes of nearly 12,000 pregnancies among women from two residential areas in Cape Town, South Africa; and five sites in the US.

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A Chinese man smokes in front of a pillar with a no smoking notice on display at a bus station in Beijing. VOA

The study sites were selected for their high rates of prenatal alcohol use and SIDS, and to include populations where the ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in SIDS remains understudied.

The researchers determined one-year outcomes for about 94 per cent of the pregnancies.

They found that 66 infants died during that time, including 28 SIDS deaths and 38 deaths from known causes.

Also Read: Marijuana Associated with Higher Risk of Heart Problems: Study

In addition to the almost 12-fold increased SIDS risk from combined smoking and drinking beyond the first trimester of pregnancy, they determined that the risk of SIDS was increased five-fold in infants whose mothers reported they continued smoking beyond the first trimester, and four-fold in infants whose mothers reported they continued drinking beyond the first trimester.

According to the researchers, these risks were in comparison to infants who were either not exposed to tobacco or alcohol during gestation or whose mothers quit tobacco or alcohol use by the end of the first trimester. (IANS)