Smoking, nicotine dependence and mental health among young adults: a 13-year population-based longitudinal study

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Aims

To investigate prospectively the associations between daily smoking and nicotine dependence and anxiety, depression and suicide attempts.

Methods

Data were from the Young in Norway Longitudinal Study. A population-based sample (n = 1501) was followed for 13 years from ages 13–27 years. Data were gathered on smoking patterns and nicotine dependence; and depression, anxiety and parasuicide. Extensive information on socio-demographic factors, parental and family conditions, parental rearing practices, educational career, conduct problems, alcohol problems and use of illegal substances was also collected.

Results

Young adults who were nicotine-dependent had clearly elevated rates of anxiety, depression and parasuicide. These rates declined after controlling for a previous history of mental health problems and potential confounding factors. After adjustment, nicotine dependence was still associated with anxiety, depression and parasuicide. There was also a significant association with later depression in the group of non-dependent daily smokers. Measures of reduced mental health did not predict later smoking initiation or the development of nicotine dependence.

Conclusions

Mental health was reduced more seriously in nicotine-dependent smokers than in non-dependent smokers. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that smoking, in particular nicotine dependence, influences mental health.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles