Smoking May Be an Independent Risk Factor for Suicidality

March 11, 2010 (Baltimore, Maryland) — Smoking may be an independent risk factor for suicidality, new research suggests.

A longitudinal study presented here at the Anxiety Disorders Association of America 30th Annual Conference shows a strong association between smoking and suicidality in a cohort of 3021 adolescents and young adults aged 14 to 24 years at baseline.

The Early Developmental Stages of Psychopathology study, a prospective, longitudinal study, showed that prior occasional, regular smoking and nicotine dependence were associated with an increased risk for the onset of suicidal ideation, with odds ratios (ORs) ranging from 1.5 to 2.7.

Prior regular smoking and nicotine dependence were also associated with the subsequent first onset of suicide attempts (ORs, 3.1-4.5). According to the investigators led by Roselind Lieb, PhD, preexisting suicidality was not associated with subsequent smoking or nicotine dependence.

“Smoking increases the risk for subsequent suicidality. We have found it is a risk factor independent of other psychopathologies or other drug use,” Dr. Lieb, professor of epidemiology and health psychology, University of Basel, Switzerland, told Medscape Psychiatry.

The study appears to confirm results from a previous 10-year, longitudinal study published in 2005 that showed that current daily smoking, but not past smoking, predicted the subsequent occurrence of suicidal thoughts or attempts independent of major depression, prior substance use, and suicidal predisposition (Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2005;62:328-334)……….

Author: Crina Frincu-Mallos, PhD
Medscape Medical News

Submitted by SARDAA

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