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Supporting someone with a mental illness to quit smoking

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Publication date: 
June 2012
Publication type: 
Fact Sheet
Intended audience: 
General public
Description: 

It is up to the smoker to decide whether they want to change their smoking habits. You cannot make someone quit, but there are ways you can provide support. It will help if you:

  • learn about the process of quitting
  • are supportive and encouraging
  • avoid being critical or negative
  • avoid telling them what they ‘should’ do — offer strategies and information instead

There are lots of ways you can support someone with a mental illness as they quit smoking, such as:

  • encouraging the person to talk to their doctor or health professional
  • making an agreement with dates and goals for you both
  • listening to how the smoker would like to quit — gradually or all at once?
  • suggesting resources to help the person quit

Your support could play an important role in helping someone quit.