There is no denying the fact that cigarette smoking addiction can be quite dangerous. Not only can it cause respiratory issues, heart-related problems, and cancers, but a recent study has revealed that it might result in poor mental health as well. Yes, you read that right!
According to a 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.
The findings of the study revealed that students who smoked had rates of clinical depression, which were two to three times higher than 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.
As per the findings of the study, specifically from the researchers at the University of Pristina, 14% of smokers suffered from depression as opposed to the 4% of their non-smoking peers.
The numbers were 19% to 11%, respectively at the Belgrade University.
Further, irrespective of their economic or socio-political backgrounds, students who smoked also had lower mental health scores and higher rates of depressive symptoms compared to non-smoking students.
“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.