Cover image for the Supporting someone with a mental illness to quit fact sheet


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

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.