Quit Smoking Patches

Quit smoking patches deliver a steady dose of nicotine through your skin to lessen the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal while quitting smoking. It is available at most pharmacies and have some of the highest sucess rates of any of the non-prescription quit smoking products on the market.

Although stop smoking patches will not give you the same levels of nicotine as smoking, it will help reduce your cravingsso you can focus on new behaviors to help you quit smoking.

Many people don't understand why you would want to use a nicotine product when trying to quit smoking. The nicotine in cigarettes is extremely addicting. In fact, the tobacco companies have added the perfect concoction of chemicals to be sure that you get the most nicotine absorbed with each puff; ensuring you are addicted. By using an nicotine replacement therapy, like the patch, you are helping to wean yourself off of the nicotine, the physically addicting component.

Quit smoking patches produced by different companies contain different amounts of nicotine, measured in milligrams (mg) which deliver nicotine through the skin. The nicotine in one 21-mg patch is equal to approximately one pack of cigarettes. Your health-care provider may start you on a lower dose patch if you smoke less than one pack of cigarettes per day. Graduallyover weeks, the dose of nicotine is lowered.
Before using quit smoking patches, read the instructions on the package carefully. Apply the patch on the first day you stop smoking. After that, apply a new patch each day – in the morning. The patch should remain attached at all times so if it comes off, apply a new patch. Most brands are intended to be worn 24 hours per day.

The patch may be placed anywhere on your upper body – including your arms, chest, back and abdomen. Non-hairy sites, not rubbed by clothing, are best. Rotate the patch site on your upper body each time a new patch is applied. This will help reduce skin irritation that may be caused by using the patch.

Problems with the patches often relate to skin irritation. If irritation occurs, an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream can be applied to the area (consult with your doctor).

If you become nauseous or have other problems with the patch, stop using the patch and contact your health care provider. You may be receiving more nicotine than you need. Consult with your doctor if other symptoms occur.

Other Precautions:

  • Do not smoke while using the nicotine patch;
  • The safety of using the nicotine patch during pregnancy is unproven;
  • If you have heart disease, inform your provider before using the patch;
  • Keep this and all medication out of reach of children and pets.
While this medication can be an effective tool to help you stop smoking, it works best when used as a part of a quit smoking program. For complete prescribing information, consult your doctor or pharmacist. And, always consult with your doctor before making any health care decisions.

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