IMPACT Guidance

The IMPACT Guidance aims to increase the knowledge and confidence of staff working within community based third-sector services supporting people with mental health problems to discuss smoking. By raising awareness of the links between smoking and mental health, it hopes to remove the uncertainty and discomfort staff may sometimes feel when discussing the topic.

The Guidance uses the acronym ‘AID’ – which stands for: Ask, Inform, Discuss options – to provide a framework for discussion.

One important factor which relates to smoking and mental health is the way in which the smoke from tobacco – not the nicotine, tar or carbon monoxide – can reduce the efficacy of specific mental health medications.  There is a dedicated reference sheet with this information (“Psychotropic drugs affected by smoking status“) available on our resources page.

A significant amount of supporting evidence underpins this guidance document.  The IMPACT Project produced “Smoking and mental health: a neglected epidemic”  which provides a broad overview of the evidence related to smoking and mental health.


Download the IMPACT Guidance: IMPACT Guidance