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Lifetime Depression, Other Mental Illness, and Smoking Cessation

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In this study, we attempt to elucidate the relationship between lifetime mental illness (LMI), particularly a depression diagnosis, and smoking cessation.


Data were drawn from a previous study and include LMI, demographics, mood, and smoking cessation outcomes. We evaluated the relationship between multiple LMIs and smoking cessation at 7 months post-intervention, and depression in combination with another LMI.


At 7 months, the adjusted odds of cessation for those with one LMI, including depression, were 0.74 (p = .102), and for those with 2+ LMIs, 0.69 (p = .037), both in comparison with participants who reported no history of LMI. Among those with 2+ LMIs, the adjusted odds of cessation for those with a depression diagnosis were 0.34 (p = .007) compared to those whose multiple LMIs did not include depression.


Among smokers seeking cessation treatment, those who had 2+ LMIs were at greater risk of relapse, an effect particularly marked in smokers with depression. This study adds to the literature examining the potential impact of LMI on smokers’ ability to quit by considering the potential impact of 2+ LMIs and highlights the potential impact of depression as a risk factor for continued smoking.
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Keywords: behavior; depression; health; mental health; new technology; smoking cessation

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 July 2018

More about this publication?
  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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