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Nicotine Patches – A Way to Kick the Butt

By on November 5, 2009

Smoking is a habit that dies hard. There are many treatments to quit smoking, the use of nicotine patches is a popular method used by many people. The patch releases nicotine in outer layers of the skin and is self-adhesive in nature.
Before using these patches, there are certain facts that you should know about:-

•    Duration – usually a patch that has nicotine is used for only 24 hours. Keep the patch as per the recommendation of the manufacturer or according to the advice of your local medical practitioner.

•    Effect on Skin – on removal of the patch, marks or redness of the skin may last for a day or more. Should it develop into a rash, make sure to consult your health practitioner.

•    Behavioral and Psychological Therapy – combined with usage of a patch, it may be more effective to undergo behavioral and psychological therapy to help overcome the withdrawal symptoms.

•    Side Effects – using nicotine patches usually create side effects such as depression, dizziness, headache, irritability and disturbance in sleep. Do not hesitate to consult a doctor in order to deal with them.

•    Dealing with Side Effects- the main side effect of skin irritation or a local rash can be dealt with using an anti-irritation cream prescribed by your doctor (creams such as triamcinolone or hydrocortisone); it is also best to regularly shift the location of the patch every time it is changed.  To deal with disturbed sleep, you could either remove the 24 hours patch at night or maybe use a 16 hour patch. But the chance of your having an intense craving to smoke in morning could be high should you decide to remove the patch at night.

•    Inform your Doctor – before using a patch it is very essential to let your doctor or pharmacist know any medical conditions or medications you are taking. This is particularly to people who are taking prescribed or non-prescribed medication, for those who have allergies, skin problems, heart problems, any other diseases or medical conditions and if you are pregnant or planning to be.

•    Precautions – a few precautions that need to be kept in mind are that you should not allow anybody else use the patch you use; consult a doctor if you are breastfeeding or if you are below 18 years of age; you could use patch in water provided it is firmly placed; and you could stop using the patch is you develop allergic reactions to any component of the nicotine patch or if continue to smoke.

Anyone would like to quit the bad habit of smoking aids. A few natural methods for the strong minded could also be adopted, like taking a walk when the craving arises, replacing the need to smoke with another substance such as eating a fruit, adopting yoga techniques, being active or indulging in a sport. For the rest, preventive medication such patches and gums will help in expediting the process. The main aspect though is the mental decision and determination of the user to quit smoking.