Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) People

Know the Facts

If you are part of the LGBT community, you likely have seen tobacco ads in magazines, newspapers, and websites directed at you. Tobacco companies are focusing their advertising on your communities.

Smoking among lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults in the United States is much higher than among heterosexual/straight adults.

  • About 1 in 5 (19.2%) lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults smoke cigarettes, compared with about 1 in 7 (13.8%) heterosexual/straight adults.*
  • Cigarette smoking is also higher among transgender adults (35.5%), than among adults whose gender identity corresponds with their birth sex (cisgender).†

Smoking increases your risk for lung cancer, heart disease, chronic bronchitis, and other smoking-related diseases.

For More Information

Real Stories: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) People Featured in Tips®

Learn the real stories of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people who are suffering from smoking-related diseases and disabilities.

Learn more about all Tips participants in our Real Stories section.


Ellie N. never smoked herself, but she worked in a bar that had many LGBT customers and she noticed plenty of smokers. She had severe asthma attacks—triggered by her exposure to secondhand smoke on the job.

I had trouble breathing. It was terrifying!

Today I start my quit journey. Free resources provided by smokefree.gov

Quitting Help

To get started right now, see our How to Quit Smoking area featuring a Quit Guide.

Get free help to quit smoking by calling a quitline: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669). Quitline coaches can answer questions, help you develop a quit plan, and provide support.

Quit-smoking treatments may be free or reduced in price through insurance, health plans, or clinics.

State Medicaid programs cover quit-smoking treatments. While the coverage varies by state, all states cover some treatments for at least some Medicaid enrollees.

Medicare currently covers two quit attempts per year and up to four face-to-face counseling sessions per attempt.

*Tobacco Product Use Among Adults – United States, 2019. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2020.

Transgender Use of Cigarettes, Cigars, and E-Cigarettes in a National Study.external icon American Journal of Preventive Medicine, [e-pub 2017 Jan 13].