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Nicotine Gum
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Nicotine Gum

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One chooses to use nicotine gum as a method to help quit their cigarette addiction or ween themselves off of tobacco. This method is referred to as NRT (nicotine replacement therapy) and is much safer as nicotine gum has much less nicotine than a cigarette and takes longer to have an effect. Other NRT products include lozenges with nicotine and nicotine patches.

 

Though the gum contains nicotine, it feels like, looks like and has the same texture of bubble gum. The taste varies depending on the many flavor of the gum you chose. 

 

When using nicotine gum like popular brands like Nicorette and Zonnic, the gum shouldn't be used less than 15 minutes after eating or drinking for maximum nicotine absorption. Typically, one chews the gum until it softens so that it produces a tingling sensation that releases the nicotine to your body. After that, the gum should be placed between the cheek and gums. This is repeated and parked in a new location until there is no longer tingling.

 

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Nicotine Gum FAQ
When can I quit using nicotine gum?
Most quit plans associated with nicotine gum run for 12 weeks. The first six weeks involve heavy usage of the product in order to quell cravings for cigarettes. Once the desired effect (smoking cessation) is achieved, the remainder of the program is spent gradually tapering down use to the point that only 1-2 pieces of gum are used daily in the final weeks before nicotine use is discontinued entirely.
Are there any side effects of nicotine gum?
Some of the most common side effects of using an NRT like nicotine gum are similar to those associated with a mild nicotine overdose, which smokers will likely remember experiencing when they first started smoking: increased blood pressure and heart rate, nausea, coughing or a sore throat. If you're experiencing these, there's a good chance your dose is too high or you're chewing the gum too often.
How much gum should I chew?
While most people will chew about 10 pieces of gum per day when first embarking on their quit-smoking journey, it's okay to chew as many as 20 pieces per day. Don't chew more than one piece at a time, and remember to tuck the gum into your cheek once it starts tingling - there's no need to chew constantly and this could actually decrease the dose of nicotine your body actually receives. If you're feeling the urge to use gum too often, try switching to a gum with a stronger nicotine dose. On the other hand, once you're able to get your cravings under control try spacing out the period between popping a new piece or reducing the dose strength. Over time these practices will help curb your nicotine dependence until you're eventually not just smoke-free, but nicotine-free as well.
Do I need a prescription for nicotine gum?
No - NRTs like nicotine gum and the patch are available as over the counter medications. While it's common for doctors to recommend quit aids like nicotine gum to smokers trying to quit, you don't need a doctor's permission to purchase or use the gum.
Why would I choose nicotine gum?
Nicotine gum can be an effective way to eliminate not only smoking but dependence on nicotine itself. By using gums of various nicotine strength and spacing out the periods between use, nicotine gum can allow you to slowly reduce your dependence on nicotine over time. Combined with a stop-smoking plan, NRTs like nicotine gum make it more likely your quit attempt will be successful than going "cold turkey."
How do I use nicotine gum?
When you experience an urge to smoke, pop a piece of gum into your mouth and chew a few times. You'll notice a tingly, peppery sensation in your mouth - this is the nicotine working. "Park" the gum by tucking it into the cavity between your gums and cheek until the tingling goes away (don't chew constantly), then chew a few more times and repeat. After 15 minutes or so the tingling sensation will go away and won't return from further chewing. Discard the gum (don't swallow it), and try waiting an hour or two before chewing another piece.
How much nicotine is in the gum?
In order to get a dose that's strong enough to be effective while still allowing ex-smokers to taper off nicotine, gums are available in a variety of strengths. If you're a light smoker, consider starting with a gum that delivers 2 mg of nicotine per piece. Heavier smokers may start with 4 mg gum before tapering down to 2 mg a few weeks into a quit attempt.
How does nicotine gum work?
Nicotine gums are a form of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) designed to help smokers quit. While nicotine is the drug that makes cigarettes addictive, on its own nicotine is far less harmful than the thousands of toxic chemicals found in cigarette smoke. Nicotine gum delivers a dose of nicotine to the body to help smokers combat cravings during an attempt at quitting.
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