Smoking Rates High Among Persons with Mental and Substance Use Disorders

By: Doug Tipperman, SAMHSA Lead Public Health Advisor   Cigarette smoking is the leading preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the US.  Despite overall declines in smoking, people with mental illness or substance abuse disorders smoke at significantly higher rates than the rest of the population.  As a result, many of them will suffer from tobacco related illnesses and die prematurely.  Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) indicate the following findings: Adults experiencing mental illness or a substance use disorder account for nearly 40 percent of …

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