Secondhand smoke exposure linked to psychological problems in children, adolescents

The Los Angeles Times “Booster Shots” blog reported, “Children and teens exposed to secondhand smoke are more likely to develop symptoms for a variety of mental health problems,” according to a study in the journal Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

The researchers “used data on 2,901 youths” between the ages of 8 and 15, who were part of the “National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2001 to 2004.”

On average, those children exposed to second-hand smoke had “almost five symptoms of major depressive disorder, almost four symptoms of ADHD, almost three symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder and more than one symptom of conduct disorder.”

The researchers determined that “levels of cotinine in the blood were strongly correlated with ADHD symptoms and weakly linked with symptoms of major depressive disorder, conduct disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.”

This is just another in a long list of reasons to try to protect ourselves and our kids from secondhand smoke. Here are some of my other blogs on this topic:

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