BEREAU BELgium Forgiveness combined with the typical cigarette-smoking ritual slows down the progression of nicotine dependence and quality of life in smokers with no history of smoking according to a study from Bordeaux. Published in Addiction the international collaboration studied 158 young adult smokers with a mean age of 20 years.

The results of the study demonstrate that for young people with a history of smoking bereavement combined with lip service reduces the level of smoking with a of 3. 5 times less increased dependence than without the service says principal investigator Harel Fobia PhD a psychotherapist based in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines France.

The findings indicate that on their own the bereaved smokers who had never smoked increased their craving for nicotine. But for those who had smoked 50 or more cigarettes a day for over 7. 5 years craving was reduced by around 1. 6-fold. This was a significant effect but it is not a cure-all since relapse in smokers with a history of smoking increases the risk of nicotine dependence symptoms Fobia says.

In order to assess the effectiveness of bereavement together with smoking abstinence Lema Levenstein a clinical psychologist from the Department of Psychiatry of Bordeaux General Hospital and colleagues assessed 814 premature babies whose mothers had smoked 30 cigarettes daily for around 7. 5 years. The babies had their mothers age date of miscarriage and mothers age and mothers chronic cough. After birth their mothers smoked an average of 48 cigarettes per day and each smoker started on their bereavement treatment. The researchers compared the change in craving between the treated and non-treated groups and found that the treatment group (with bereavement treatment) did not experience the reverse effect on craving (smoking withdrawal).

Next the researchers examined 1300 similarly aged young adults (56020 women) who had never smoked and were not smoking at the time. Compared with the control group as a group-based statistical analysis those who had smoked 50 or more cigarettes daily for over 7. 5 years were 3. 6 times more likely to experience withdrawal symptoms when compared with those who had not smoked for over 7. 5 years. These effect sizes were too small to be statistically significant. The statistical analysis did manage to adjust for whether people had relapsed which affected by age and marital status.

Overall the findings suggest that bereavement treatments combined with smoking cessation cessation may be effective in reducing smoking and increasing life satisfaction among nicotine-exposed young adult smokers with prior or current history of smoking.

The researchers studied 158 nicotine-exposed young adults says Levenstein. They found that both bereavement therapy and showing no tobacco use did not decrease craving for tobacco nor did the absence of use impair dopamine D2 receptor agonism a paradigm for complex and effective dopamine agonism. It was unexpected as the findings contradict many prior studies that have shown that nicotine acts by delaying the positive effects of tobacco smoking. It is not clear how ensuring a positive end point to tobacco cessation may be achieved in this study in a population without an extensive background in tobacco cessation counselling.