Let’s talk about smoking
Guidance, support and training for staff supporting people with mental health problems about the effects of smoking on mental health, and how you can respond.
Smoking is an important, and emotive, issue in the world of mental health.
We know that people experiencing poor mental health are more likely to smoke, and in fact smoking is the biggest part of why people with mental health issues die 10-20 years earlier than the general population. Smoking imposes significant financial costs on this already disadvantaged group, with the average cost to a smoker being £1600 a year. We now also know that smoking does not support good mental health, and stopping smoking is associated with improvements in conditions such as depression, stress and anxiety.
Reducing smoking is now a national priority in the Scottish Government’s 10-year mental health strategy. Yet many professionals report that they find it difficult to engage with clients on smoking, as they wish to avoid appearing judgemental or controlling, or feel that this further disempowers clients through taking away a support mechanism.
The IMPACT project exists to support workers and volunteers, enabling them to be more confident when supporting clients to consider the mental and physical health benefits of stopping smoking.”