Smoking rates higher among the mentally ill
Utah has the lowest smoking rate for people with mental illness, while West Virginia has the highest, according to a new study.
According to a report issued Tuesday by both the Centers of Disease Control and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, people with mental illness are 70% more likely to smoke than those without. The report shows that 36% of adults with mental illness smoke, compared to just 21% of people without mental illness.
There are about 46 million adults with mental illness in the United States. According to the report, those same adults are less likely to quit smoking once they've started and consume nearly a third of the cigarettes sold in the U.S.
While 34% of women with mental illness smoke, the problem is a bit more acute for the 40% of men with mental illness who do the same. The report links poverty to increased smoking among all demographics, but it's a far greater issue for those with mental illness. While 33% of those without mental illness living below the poverty line smoke, that percentage jumps to 48% once mental illness is a factor.
So what's the key difference? Though the report didn't include patients in psychiatric hospitals, it noted that smoking is far more normalized at mental health facilities than in other establishments. Patients there are also more likely to know people who smoke and to receive cigarettes as a reward for good behavior. Once people with mental illness start smoking, they find that it takes the edge off their medication's negative side effects and they continue to use cigarettes to keep symptoms under control.
Unfortunately, the doctors behind the report found that mental illness also makes smokers a lot less capable of handling withdrawal symptoms and reduces their desire to quit. This contributes to corresponding rates of mental illness and overall smoking in certain states. Utah, for example, had the lowest rate of smoking among people with mental illness at 18.1%. Meanwhile, West Virginia had the highest rate at 48.7%.
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Unfortunately eliminating smoking releases more unstable people in the community than would keeping them smoking.
I'd have to know which of "the" mentaly ill were studied to validate the findings
It's because people with mental illness don't have good coping skills and substance abuse is a way of coping. Yes, cigarettes are legal but people who are smokers are substance abusers, pure and simple.
It's no different than us commenters on these news stories. Commentating is a way for us to unwind and get our tensions out. I have a feeling that most of us who are regular commenters have some form of mental illness or another.
CDC is now classified as a "Tool" of the current administration.....
I see it now, If you smoke, you're classified as possibly mentally ill and you may be turned down for gun ownership........How convienent!
What a misleading article. There is an agenda that smoking is a lower class
weaker mind phenomena. Did you ever think to look into the pharmacology
or how the nicotine is attractive to certain disorders? With dopamine low in certain
illnesses, the nicotine is a boost. Not something you will see a great deal with depression.
This journalism aids in the stigmatizing of the mentally ill.
WHAT DIFFERANCE DOE'S IT MAKE. WHAT o/o OF PEOPLE SMOKE .QUIT WASTING MONEY ON THING'S THAT NOBODY GIVE A S;.
QUIT WAST TAX PAYERS MONEY ON STUPID THINGS LIKE THIS WHO GIVE'S A F&$+
These studies are prejudicial based on the simple fact that the final results are determined before the study begins.
I hope we as taxpayers are not funding these stupid studies!
The CDC needs to confine it's research to the control and cures for diseases instead of this crap!
We need to be upset more when the fed spends our money on frivolous studies like they have been!
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