People With Mental Health Conditions

Know the Facts

Smoking-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease, lung disease, and cancer are among the most common causes of death among adults with mental health conditions.

Smoking is much more common among adults with mental health conditions than in the general population.

  • More than 1 in 4 (28%) adults with a mental health condition smokes cigarettes.*,†
  • Approximately 1 in 4 (or 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.*

For More Information

Real Stories: People Featured in Tips®

Rebecca

Meet Rebecca. Rebecca, age 57, an avid runner, lives in Florida. She is a single mom and grandparent who was diagnosed with depression at age 33. Rebecca quit smoking at age 52.

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

Quitting Help

People with mental health conditions, like depression and anxiety, face challenges in quitting smoking and may benefit from extra help to succeed. With the right support, you can quit smoking without worsening your mental health condition. In fact, studies show that quitting smoking can be good for your mental health.

To get started right now, see our How to Quit Smoking area featuring a Quit Guide website and an additional Quitting Resources page.

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.

*Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Results from the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tablespdf iconexternal icon. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, 2017.

†Lipari R, Van Horn S. Smoking and Mental Illness Among Adults in the United States.external icon The CBHSQ Report: March 30, 2017. Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Rebecca

Rebecca, age 57, struggled with depression and smoked cigarettes to help her cope with her feelings. The more Rebecca smoked, the harder she felt it was to quit. Rebecca finally quit smoking for good after getting care for her depression. She now leads a smokefree life.

“I quit smoking and I got care for my depression.”