Lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people: key points

  • We do not know exactly how many lesbian, gay or bisexual people live in Scotland. The most recent estimate is 1.5%, obtained from the Scottish Surveys Core Questions 2013,
  • The most recent estimate for the UK suggests 1.6% of adults self identify as LGB (Integrated Household Survey 2013),
  • The majority of health services research studies involving LGB people have concentrated on sexual health issues although it is likely that other health issues are of equal or greater importance,
  • Cross-sectional surveys from England and Wales have found that LGB people are more likely to report mental health problems than heterosexual people,
  • Researchers have found higher levels of smoking among the LGB population but this finding is not consistent in all studies,
  • Research in this area is very hard to do but the concern about selection bias is unavoidable, so that the results need to be viewed with some caution.

Section updates:

  • The last major update of this section was completed in March 2016.
  • The next major update is due to be carried out by end June 2017.