Association of cigarette smoking and depressive symptoms in a forensic population

Academic Clinical Psychiatry, University of Sheffield School of Medicine, The Longley Centre, Sheffield, United Kingdom.
Depression and Anxiety (Impact Factor: 4.29). 01/2007; 24(5):325-30. DOI: 10.1002/da.20235
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The link between mental health issues and smoking has been an important area of investigation. However, little is known about this association in a general adult, male forensic population. The aim of this study was to identify demographic and clinical (depression and anxiety) variables that predict smoking in a forensic population. A large cohort of 353 inmates in a high-security prison underwent a psychiatric interview, including administration of the Montgomery-Asberg Rating Scale for Depression (MADRS) and Hamilton's Rating Scale for Anxiety (HAM-A). Multiple regression analysis suggested that younger age and higher depression scores might predict the amount of daily smoking in this population. In contrast, anxiety symptoms were not an independent predictor for smoking in our study. These findings support the need for additional research to focus on those factors associated with smoking in forensic populations. Psychiatric screening for younger male individuals in forensic settings and targeted cognitive-behavioral interventions to treat depressed smokers may ameliorate the smoking abstinence rate in prisons.