SEOUL, May 26 (Korea Bizwire) – A study conducted by a Chung-Ang University Hospital research team headed by Professor Sun Mi Kim (Psychology Department) and Professor Jae Woo Jung (Respiratory Allergy Department) has found that female smokers are four times more likely to be depressed than male smokers and three times more at risk of suicidal urges.
The research team announced the findings on May 25 after conducting a study between 2008 and 2012 with the participation of 32,184 adult smokers.
The frequency of depression was strikingly polarized according to gender. Most notably, the study found that 28.4 percent of female smokers reported experiencing depression, as opposed to only 6.7 percent of male smokers – a fourfold difference. Similarly, 35.1 percent of female smokers reported having experienced suicidal urges, which was three times more than the 12.4 percent of male smokers who responded similarly.
This pattern of drastic contrast was also found between female smokers and female non-smokers, further substantiating the case that smoking can lead to depression. A reported 28.9 percent of female smokers had experienced depression in the past, but only 17.1 percent of female non-smokers reported experiencing depression, and only 18.9 percent had experienced suicidal urges.
“In order to decrease the number of female smokers and raise the success rate of stopping smoking, early intervention and psychological checkups are vital,” said Professor Kim. “I believe providing stress relief methods other than smoking would greatly help,” she added.
“The societal prejudice against female smokers is another main stress increasing factor,” added Professor Jung. “Instead of relentlessly pushing smokers to quit, various approaches to stress relief should be employed,” he emphasized.
The results of the study were published in the latest issue of ‘Psychiatry Investigation’, an international academic journal from the Korean NeuroPsychiatric Association.
By Esther J. Kim (firstname.lastname@example.org)