You may find going it alone will work for you, here’s the support you can access to help you do this...
If you prefer to stop smoking your own way, or feel you don’t need specialist support, there are still many ways to quit to suit you. Treatment to manage your dependence on nicotine such as nicotine replacement therapy or an e-cigarette together with some motivational support in the form of an app or online support programme will greatly increase your chances of success.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) – NRT products can help you to tackle your dependence on nicotine and are available from many supermarkets and pharmacies. They provide a lower dose of nicotine and without the tar, carbon monoxide and other chemicals present in tobacco smoke.
- Nicotine patches are applied directly on your skin. If you are a regular smoker they can help you to quit for good as they release nicotine over either 16 hours (all day) or 24 hours (day and night), depending on the type of patch you choose. The NRT patch delivers a steady dose of nicotine and helps with lessening withdrawal symptoms and nicotine cravings.
- Nicotine gum and lozenges both release nicotine helping to fight nicotine cravings and withdrawal symptoms – so can stop you reaching for a cigarette. The gum is chewed once or twice until it starts to tingle in your mouth and then you park it in the side of your mouth for a minute or so, when the taste fades you chew again and park on the other side. Lozenges are similar to gum, put one in your mouth and allow it to dissolve. Lozenges should not be crunched or chewed as this can cause stomach discomfort and excess wind.
- The NRT inhalator is a small plastic tube, which houses a replaceable cartridge and a mouthpiece. You inhale on the end of the plastic tube and nicotine vapour is released into your mouth, using deep breaths or shallow puffs. If you need the ‘hand-to-mouth’ action of smoking, inhalators are a great option. You replace the disposable cartridge in an inhalator after around 80 puffs.
- The nicotine microtab is a small tablet that dissolves under the tongue – chewing or swallowing them doesn’t work. The microtab tastes quite peppery but with continued use most people become used to the taste. Don’t wait until a craving starts, the microtab should be used regularly throughout the day to keep cravings at bay. Use for at least 8-12 weeks to give yourself the best chance of quitting for good.
- Nicotine nasal spray is used to give a quick and effective dose of nicotine absorbed through the lining of your nose. This is a fairly fast way to release nicotine to help fight your nicotine cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
E-cigarettes are around 95% less harmful than smoking so could be a great way to help you kick the habit. E-cigarettes aren’t currently available from the NHS or stop smoking services. You can buy them and get advice from specialist vape shops and some pharmacies.
Support from pharmacies and GP surgeries
You can also get one to one support, nicotine replacement therapy and Varenicline (Champix) from NHS stop smoking services in many pharmacies and GP surgeries. Use the search option below to find your nearest service or click on ‘chat’ for more information.
- NHS Smokefree – a four week programme with practical support, encouragement and tailored advice.
- One You – track your progress, see how much you’re saving and get daily support wherever you are
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If you would like more guidance to get started on your smokefree journey, you can always click on “chat” for an instant answer, or speak to your pharmacist. You can also contact us at any time to talk about all the different ways to quit.
Prefer not to go it alone? Don’t worry, there are more support options available here.