Researchers Says There is Link between Smoking and Depression

Researchers Says There is Link between Smoking and DepressionA study has been carried out by the researchers of the University of Otago in New Zealand, which says that nicotine-dependent people were more than twice as likely to have symptoms of depression as those who did not smoke.

According to this recent study, smoking could increase the risk of depression in a person. Participants of ages 18, 21 and 25, were asked about their smoking habits and whether they had symptoms of depression.

Using a sophisticated statistical technique called structural equation modelling (SEM), researchers have looked at this relationship of smoking and depression in more detail. This analysis illustrated that smoking increases the risk of developing depressive symptoms, rather than people being more likely to smoke because they are depressed.

One of the lead researchers Prof David Ferguson, while commenting on the results of the study said "Our findings are consistent with the conclusion that there is a cause and effect relationship between smoking and depression, in which cigarette smoking increases the risk of developing symptoms of depression".

It has been admitted by the Prof Ferguson that the reason for this relationship is not clear but according to him it is that nicotine causes changes to neurotransmitter activity in the brain, leading to an increased risk of depression. He cautioned that the study should be viewed as suggestive rather than definitive.