Secondhand smoke exposure and depressive symptoms

Frank C. Bandiera, Kristopher L. Arheart, Alberto J. Caban-Martinez, Lora E. Fleming, Kathryn McCollister, Noella A. Dietz, William G. Leblanc, Evelyn P. Davila, John E. Lewis, Berrin Serdar, David J. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association between secondhand smoke (SHS) exposure and depression. Tobacco smoking and depression are strongly associated, but the possible effects of SHS have not been evaluated. METHODS: The 2005 to 2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a cross-sectional sample of the noninstitutionalized civilian U.S. population. SHS exposure was measured in adults aged ≥20 years by serum cotinine and depressive symptoms by the Patient Health Questionnaire. Zero-inflated Poisson regression analyses were completed with adjustment for survey design and potential confounders. RESULTS: Serum cotinine-documented SHS exposure was positively associated with depressive symptoms in never-smokers, even after adjustment for age, race/ethnicity, gender, education, alcohol consumption, and medical comorbidities. The association between SHS exposure and depressive symptoms did not vary by gender, nor was there any association between SHS smoke exposure and depressive symptoms in former smokers. CONCLUSIONS: Findings from the present study suggest that SHS exposure is positively associated with depressive symptoms in never-smokers and highlight the need for further research to establish the mechanisms of association.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-72
Number of pages5
JournalPsychosomatic medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010


  • Depressive symptoms
  • Mental health policy
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Tobacco policy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Applied Psychology


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