May is Mental Health Month. Most are aware of the prevalence of smoking, however, fewer might know about the prevalence of smoking among those suffering from mental illness. Statistics have shown that people with mental illness die 25 years earlier than others and that smoking is a major factor in those deaths. Each year, about 20% of the U.S. population is diagnosed with a mental disorder; 40% of those individuals use tobacco.
People with mental illnesses suffer greater smoking related medical illnesses and death simply because they tend to use tobacco at greater rates than the general population. These statistics demonstrate just how important it is to campaign against tobacco use and also how vital it is to quit using tobacco.
Mental health professionals can help their patients quit by providing proven treatments and referring them to other helpful resources.
For more information on mental health please contact our Behavioral Health Department at 719-589-8008.