Introduction: Depression is one of the most common psychiatric problems. The prevalence of depression in Iran has been estimated about 10-35% in females and 5-9% in males. Nicotine is a narcotic substance and approximately 22% of American people are dependent on it. One of the notorious outcomes of nicotine-dependency is behavioral problems. The aim of this study was to find the relationship between depression and nicotine-dependency so as to prevent its harmful effects on the society.
Materials & Methods: In this descriptive cross-sectional study the relationship between depression and nicotine-dependency has been investigated. For this purpose 120 patients referring to Ayatollah Kashani OPD in 2002 were selected by simple random sampling. In the first stage all subjects were evaluated by nicotine-dependency test (forhrestrom) and divided into two groups of nicotine-dependents (N=25) and non-dependents (N=95). Then the depression in the two groups was evaluated by employing Beck Standard Test and the relationship between depression and nicotine-dependency was studied by comparing the obtained results in the two mentioned groups. Data were analyzed by c2.
Results: In the present study the rate of depression was higher in nicotine-dependent group comparing to non-dependents. That is, in the nicotine-dependent group 24% had mild, 32% moderate and 20% severe depression. In non-dependent group mild depression was seen in 23.7%, moderate in 23.7% and severe in 7.9%. This showed a significant difference between the two groups with regard to the rate of depression (p=0.003). In dependent group 28% and in non-dependent group only 7.9% had history of depression.
Conclusion: Based on the results, nicotine-dependent subjects had higher rate of depression comparing to non-dependents. Depression and nicotine-dependency had a reciprocal relationship. Among all demographic variables, the only nicotine-dependency variable leading to depression was in smokers. Therefore health programs are highly recommended in order to teach and inform all levels of community of the harmful effects of nicotine.
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