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Study Links Adolescent Depression to Potential for Osteoporosis

By April 15, 2013July 17th, 2019Dangerous Drugs

According to the results of a first-time study that was published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, smoking and depression during teen years negatively impact the bone’s mineral density. This can cause osteoporosis during later years.

With a person’s bone mineral density (BMD) being affected by early life smoking, depression and anxiety, this study could prove significant since it’s the first of its kind. This recent study is the first one that shows that depression symptoms and smoking in teenage can have a negative affect on teens’ bone accrual. It may also become a red flag for future osteoporosis during their postmenopausal years.

“Adolescence is a crucial period of development that lays the foundation for women’s health across the lifespan,” says lead investigator Lorah D. Dorn, PhD, of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics. “As much bone is accrued in the two years surrounding menarche as is lost in the last four decades of life.

“To our knowledge, our study is the first to test and demonstrate that smoking behavior and depressive symptoms in girls have a negative impact on bone accrual across adolescence. It may be premature to advocate screening for BMD in adolescents with depressive symptoms or those who smoke, but our study should be replicated to determine whether greater vigilance in monitoring bone mineral status is necessary,” she concludes.

Depression is a condition that affects billions of people worldwide and is generally treated with antidepressants like Paxil and Effexor. However, the drugs have proven dangerous for most people to use. Both Paxil and Effexor are also known to cause serious side effects, which can include violent and suicidal thoughts and behaviors as well as birth defects in babies whose mothers take the drug while pregnant. Some of those defects include PPHN, spina bifida, neural tube defects and oral clefts. With teenagers suffering from the condition more and more, this study can help aid in parents finding safer alternative treatments that can lessen the severity of the symptoms. This in turn can help reduce the likelihood of post-menopausal osteoporosis.