Mental Health

Approximately 25% of adults in the U.S. have some form of mental illness or substance use disorder, and these adults consume almost 40% of all cigarettes smoked by adults.¹

  • People with mental illness or substance use disorders die about 5 years earlier than those without these disorders3, many of these deaths are caused by smoking cigarettes. 2,4

 

  • The most common causes of death among people with mental illness are heart disease, cancer, and lung disease, which can all be caused by smoking. 3
  • Nicotine has mood-altering effects that can temporarily mask the negative symptoms of mental illness, putting people with mental illness at higher risk for cigarette use and nicotine addiction.2,4

 

  • Tobacco smoke can interact with and inhibit the effect of certain medications taken by mental health and substance use patients.5
  • People with mental illness or substance use disorders die about 5 years earlier than those without these disorders3, many of these deaths are caused by smoking cigarettes2,4.
  • The most common causes of death among people with mental illness are heart disease, cancer, and lung disease, which can all be caused by smoking3.
  • Nicotine has mood-altering effects that can temporarily mask the negative symptoms of mental illness, putting people with mental illness at higher risk for cigarette use and nicotine addiction2,4.
  • Tobacco smoke can interact with and inhibit the effect of certain medications taken by mental health and substance use patients5.

Information for providers:

Support and encourage smoke-free and tobacco-free environments and other health care facilities, group centers, and common areas in housing including prohibiting smoking and other tobacco use by healthcare providers, caregivers, and others working in and visiting such facilities, centers, and housing.

Implement educational and tobacco use cessation programs to help patients stop and avoid tobacco addiction.

Resources for providers:

Resources:

1Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. The NSDUH Report: Adults With Mental Illness or Substance Use Disorder Account for 40 Percent of All Cigarettes Smoked [PDF–563 KB]. March 20, 2013. Rockville, MD [accessed 2016 May 18].

2Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vital Signs: Current Cigarette Smoking Among Adults Aged ≥18 Years With Mental Illness—United States, 2009–2011. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2013;62(05):81-7 [accessed 2016 May 18].

3Druss BG, Zhao L, Von Esenwein S, Morrato EH, Marcus SC. Understanding Excess Mortality in Persons With Mental Illness: 17-Year Follow Up of a Nationally Representative US Survey. Medical Care 2011;49(6):599–604 [cited 2016 May 18].

4Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vital Signs Fact Sheet: Adult Smoking Focusing on People With Mental Illness, February 2013. National Center for Chronic Disease and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2013 [accessed 2016 May 18]. 

5Smoking Cessation Leadership Center. Fact Sheet: Drug Interactions With Tobacco Smoke. San Francisco: Smoking Cessation Leadership Center, University of California, 2015 [accessed 2016 May 18].

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