For some people, even those who otherwise don’t smoke, drinking and smoking cigarettes go hand in hand. Taken alone, heavy drinking and tobacco have many unhealthy side effects. But when taken together, a new study indicates that the pair could contribute to accelerated mental decline.
Researchers from University College London found that those who combine heavy drinking with tobacco smoking suffer serious consequences. Combining the two indulgent and unhealthy behaviors was associated with 36% faster decline in brain function. As the amount of alcohol increases, this rate only accelerates further.
The researchers looked at 6,500 adults between the ages of 45 and 69 for a ten year period. The study subjects were asked about their smoking and alcohol habits. Their mental function was tested three times over the period of the study using a combination of verbal and math reasoning, verbal fluency, and short-term verbal memory tests.
“When we looked at people who were heavy-drinking smokers, we found that for every 10 years that they aged, their brains aged the equivalent of 12 years,” lead researcher Dr. Gareth Hagger-Johnson explained. “From a public health perspective, the increasing burden associated with cognitive [mental] aging could be reduced if lifestyle factors can be modified, and we believe that people should not drink alcohol more heavily in the belief that alcohol is a protective factor against cognitive decline.”
The study was published in a recent volume of the British Journal of Psychiatry and the researchers warn that although there was an association between smoking, heavy drinking, and cognitive decline, it didn’t prove a cause-effect relationship.
Still, this research adds one more danger to the detrimental effects of smoking. Others include:
- The cost to your wallet
- The cost to your health
- increased cancer risk
- Increased risk of high blood pressure
- Increased risk of heart attack and stroke
- The smell
- Shortened life
- Increased healthcare costs
- Inability to get life insurance
- Effects of second-hand smoke on the people around you
Stopping smoking now can actually lessen these many effects and after a period of time, actually eliminate many of them altogether.
3 thoughts on “Smoking and Drinking Together Accelerates Mental Decline by 36%”
When you get drunk then stoned, you're only droned. But when you get stoned then drunk, you're stunk.
My Dad passed away at 96 from a hospital virus. He was incredibly lucid and showed no sign of dementia. His heart and lungs were healthy at the time of his death. He smoked 2 packs a day from teenager to the day he died.
He also drank Brandy every day. This study is more BS from the dogooders.
It is a common thing in get together and parties that people use to light up cigarettes and have cocktails. It is a normal thing but when people are addicted to such stuff, then there is a bad effect on the mental health of the person skills. With the increase in addiction there are unhealthy side effects. Those people who use to smoke cigarettes and do heavy drinking are at high risks of mental disease. The combined combination is very harmful for the brain and it can accelerate cognitive decline and result of it is problems such as reduction in ability to think, judge and remember things. So, it is advised that people should start reducing these habits as fast as they can. Instead of smoking tobacco cigarette they can switch to e cigarettes and then they can quit smoking.