A new study finds smokers are two to four times more likely than nonsmokers to commit suicide. State public health interventions such as indoor smoking bans and cigarette taxes could reduce suicide rates by as much as 15 percent, the researchers say.
“It is an open question whether smoking is a direct risk factor for poor mental health outcomes, and by extension, suicide,” the researchers write in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco. “If so, this would have significant implications for public health and clinical practice because it would establish smoking as a common and modifiable risk factor for suicide. In this case, more effective tobacco control policies and other smoking interventions could be promising means for suicide risk mitigation.”