Quit Smoking Products
Are you confused about all of the quit smoking products on the market? Most of us are aware that the nicotine in cigarettes is potentially addictive. In fact, it can be both physically and psychologically addictive. For someone who smokes a pack-a-day, that means nicotine is reaching the brain more than 200 times a day. For someone who is trying to quit smoking, that means they may experience withdrawal symptoms. So, it may be helpful for you to assess your level of
addiction to cigarettes.
This will help you in finding the best quit smoking aids available to you.
I've heard many people say that they don't want to take a "drug" or they want to quit the "natural way." Just remember that you breathe in more than
with each puff of a cigarette and you are already taking a drug; nicotine. Nicotine is a powerfully addictive drug which usually requires a quit smoking medicine to break the addiction. So, take the time to read about all of the quit smoking products and always consult with your health care provider before starting any medication.
Non-Nicotine Stop Smoking Medications
There are currently two non-nicotine medications that are FDA approved as quit smoking aids.
has been around for many years and has shown to improve quit rates up to 25%.
The new stop smoking drug, Chantix,
is also showing great results as a quit smoking product but has some precautions. Both medications are started approximately one-week before your quit date.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy
There are several quit smoking products that are a form of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). This means that they contain nicotine, are started on your quit date (do not smoke while using any NRT), and doses are gradually reduced as you master the behaviors of quitting smoking.
Quit smoking gum
Quit Smoking Lozenge (Commit)
are great products for those who have an "oral fixation." The
quit smoking patches
are a product that discretely gives a steady dose of nicotine through the skin. The
quit smoking inhaler
quit smoking medication, Nicotrol,
are both available by prescription and provide alternatives to the other NRT options.
There are some alternative aids to quit smoking that don't have as much evidence behind them. While having a research background makes me side with the strong evidence-based therapies, I do think that some people can quit using these aids. If you are going to try an alternative aid, I would suggest using it combination with a
quit smoking support program.
Hypnosis, also hypnotherapy is a treatment by which a clinician attempts to induce an altered attention state and heightened suggestibility to help someone quit smoking. The research evidence to support hypnosis is mixed (at best) and hypnosis methods vary a great deal which contributes to the difficulty in studying it as a quit smoking aid. However, even with the lack of evidence, there are many people who have quit smoking using hypnosis
Acupuncture is a treatment involving the placement of needles in specific areas of the body to help people quit smoking. There aren't any good scientific studies out there that support the use of acupuncture as a quit smoking aid. While it is probably harmless, it may be a waste of your money on something that is ineffective.
Herbs/Supplements like St. Johns Wart, Lobelia, and Ginseng have been promoted as quit smoking products. There is little scientific evidence to support the use of supplements as quit smoking aids. In the U.S., because they are marketed as dietary supplements (as opposed to drugs), they don't need FDA (Federal Drug Administration) approval to be sold. The manufacturers don’t have to prove they’re effective, or even safe (yikes!). I would suggest EXTREME caution if thinking about using a dietary supplement. Many herbs can interact with other medications so it's very important to talk with your doctor and pharmacist before using any supplement.
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