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Smoking 'seriously damages your IQ' 

Jump to full article: Times Of London (uk), 2004-12-05
Author: Camillo Fracassini


SMOKERS risk damaging their intelligence, suffering memory loss, slower reflexes and impaired problem solving.

Scientists have, for the first time, linked smoking with impaired mental agility in a study which shows that the habit can reduce a person's IQ by up to 3%. . . .

. . .

Scientists at Aberdeen and Edinburgh universities contacted 413 people who had taken part in the Scottish national IQ survey in 1947, when they were aged 11. The subjects were tested again in 2000-02, when they were aged 64. The two sets of results, across a range of standard IQ measurements, including memory, learning and reasoning, were then compared. . . .

Researchers discovered that the IQ scores of smokers were up to 3% lower than those of former smokers and non-smokers. Their psychomotor speed -- co-ordination and dexterity -- was also lower.

On average, the IQ of smokers showed a steeper decline over the 53 years than those of non-smokers.

The study, published in the current edition of the scientific journal Addictive Behaviors, found no significant difference between the IQs of ex-smokers and non-smokers.

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Quotes from this article:

Our findings are significant because they show for the first time the long-term effect of smoking on cognitive ability.
John Starr, of Edinburgh University's department of geriatric medicine, on the study published in the current edition of Addictive Behaviors.