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Quit Smoking And Nicotine Replacement Therapy
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Quit Smoking with Nicotine Replacement Therapy

There are many ways to quit smoking. Quitting cold turkey is a popular method, for obvious reasons, but is associated with poor results. Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is also a popular quit method and is endorsed (in most countries) by health bodies and often supported by government agencies. Nicotine replacement tackles the physical symptoms and cravings due to a smoker's addiction to nicotine. Ultimately it is hoped that the ex-smoker will be able to wean themselves off their dependence on nicotine altogether.

The Nicotine Patch

NRT can be administered in a variety of forms. Trans-dermal patches (nicotine patches) can be fixed to a convenient skin area where they administer slow release nicotine over a 12 or 24 hour period, dependent on patch type. It is particularly recommended for those who crave a cigarette after first awakening. A patch placed on the skin just before bed results in nicotine being present in the system when the individual awakes, thus taking the edge off early morning cravings.

Nicotine Gum and Lozenges

Nicotine gum is chewed, according to instructions, and parked in the corner of the mouth to allow efficient nicotine absorption through the cheek. It takes about 10 minutes for nicotine to reach the blood stream by this method and is considered faster acting than using nicotine patches alone. Typically, 12 to 16 pieces of gum are chewed within a given day. Nicotine lozenges act in a similar way to the gum but don't require chewing, but are sucked instead.

The Nasal Spray

The fastest way to obtain a nicotine fix is by nasal delivery given by spraying a nicotine solution directly into the nose. In this way nicotine is rapidly absorbed through the blood vessel rich nasal cavity and mimics the rapidity of nicotine take up by smoking and is particularly useful for smokers who experience intense nicotine withdrawal.

NRT Good Smoking Bad

The main criticism of NRT is that it doesn't address the underlying nicotine addiction and that while it may help the user to quit smoking, there exists the possibility that they may become chronically dependant on NRT. Even if this occurs, nicotine on its own is probably not injurious to health, in the medium term. And it cannot be denied that it is infinitely preferable to inhaling the 4000 chemicals present in tobacco smoke, of which at least 60 are known carcinogens, or cancer causing agents. And then there is carbon monoxide, a compound which is extremely toxic and reduces oxygen levels in the blood; a chemical strongly implicated in heart disease. Let's not forget tar, formaldehyde and hydrogen cyanide.

To, conclude, NRT increases the chances of smoking cessation by controlling the withdrawal symptoms of nicotine addiction. Even, so, NRT only increases quit rates to about 10-15% (after 6 months), in users. This fact underscores the reality about nicotine being an extremely addictive drug. It is widely acknowledged, by experts, that not only is nicotine addictive but that nicotine is likely to be the most addictive drug known to man. It is small wonder therefore that smokers find the habit so hard to give up.


Street Talk

Nice and very informative George !

Reply
  about 6 years ago
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