People with schizophrenia are much more likely to be heavy smokers than other people. This was a source of friction in my family for years, with my well-meaning father pushing my sister to quit for the sake of her health. It's just not that simple. Smoking has a special effect on people with schizophrenia that makes it very difficult to quit. In fact, the connection between nicotine and acetylcholine receptors in the brain is one more clue to help scientists understand the brain chemistry of schizophrenia.