Background: Many studies have indicated a relationship between smoking cessation and a history of depression. However, few studies have examined the association between smoking cessation and current depression and even fewer evidence come from mainland China. The aim of this study is to determine the prevalence of smoking quitters, the correlates of successful smoking cessation, and its relationship with depressive symptoms in Northwest China.
Methods: A total of 7,644 subjects who met the study’s entry criteria were randomly selected from the urban areas of three provinces in Northwest China and interviewed using standardized assessment tools, including basic characteristics of households and detailed information on family members. All respondents provided informed consent.
Results: people with depression symptom have a more than 1.5-fold risk of abstinence from smoking than those without depression (OR=1.54; 95% CI, 1.2 to 1.9) and the likelihood ratio test for two models reach statistical significance (x2=13.2, p<0.001). Smoking quitters have a more than 1.5-fold risk of having depressive symptoms than current smokers (OR=1.54; 95% CI, 1.2 to 1.9) and the likelihood ratio test for two models is also statistically significant (x2=6449.85, p<0.001).
Conclusions: The prevalence of smoking quitters in urban areas of Northwest China is very low. After controlling certain confounders, smoking cessation is associated with current depressive symptoms. More rigorous surveys are needed to elucidate the barriers to smoking cessation in China. Government bodies in China should implement appropriate strategies and execute effective measures to mitigate its harmful consequences.