Nottinghamshire adults with mental health condition more than 50% more likely to smoke

Adults in Nottinghamshire with long-term mental health conditions are more than 50 per cent more likely to smoke than the wider population, new figures show.

By Andrew Dowdeswell
Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 2:15 pm

Action on Smoking and Health said the higher prevalence of smoking among those with mental health conditions drives inequalities in life expectancy and general health.

Office for Health Improvement and Disparities figures show 26.6 per cent of adults with a long-term mental health condition in the NHS Nottinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group area said they smoked in 2020-21, up from 22 per cent the year before.

Altogether, 15.3 per cent of adults in Nottinghamshire said they smoke.

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Nationally, 14.4 per cent of adults said they smoke regularly, but this rises to 26.3 per cent among those with a mental health illness.

It meant an adult with a mental health condition was 74 per cent more likely to smoke than the wider population.

Nationally, 14.4 per cent of adults said they smoke regularly, but this rises to 26.3 per cent among those with a mental health illness.

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Hazel Cheeseman, ASH deputy chief executive, called on the Government to do more to bring down smoking rates among those with mental health conditions.

She said: “With more investment into services and wider policies to reduce smoking, we can bring rates down for people with mental health conditions and everyone else.

“The Government pledged to make smoking obsolete back in 2019 – it is past time we heard how they will do this and address the terrible inequalities caused by smoking for people with mental health conditions.”

Stopping smoking is linked to improved mental health, Ms Cheeseman said, adding some conditions such as depression and schizophrenia have been linked to starting smoking.

The figures come after the Government's unveiled its aim to be smoke-free by 2030, meaning fewer than 5 per cent of adults in England will regularly smoke.

Smoking prevalence among people aged over 16 in England has continued to decline throughout the last decade, dropping from 19.6 per cent in 2010 to 14.4 per cent in 2020, Office for National Statistics show.

The Department for Health and Social Care said it is ‘addressing the damaging health implications of smoking right across the country, especially where rates remain high’, as it aims to make England smoke-free by 2030.