Tobacco smoking is an unhealthy lifestyle habit, and it is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States.
Previous research has found that tobacco smoking is a big risk factor of many life-threatening diseases, including lung cancer, heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure.
In the U.S., tobacco use causes more than 480,000 deaths annually.
Many current smokers try to quit smoking, but it can be hard and people often go back to smoking.
Experts from FDA list several misperceptions around smoking cessation medications and hope to separate fact from fiction.
Fiction 1: The best way to quit is “cold turkey.”
According to researchers, there is no “right way” to quit smoking.
Many smokers try to quit “cold turkey” and are not successful. The good news is that they can try several different things to help quit smoking.
For example, over-the-counter nicotine replacement therapy products and prescription medications can help reduce withdrawal symptoms.
These cessation medicines can double your chances of successfully quitting. You can combine medication and behavioral support, which is more effective than either alone.
Fiction 2: All smoking cessation medications are the same.
Currently, there are three different types of medications approved by the FDA: nicotine replacement therapies, bupropion, and varenicline.
Among them, nicotine replacement therapies have five different forms: inhaler, nasal spray, patch, gum, or lozenge.
You need to talk to your doctor to determine which option may be best for you.
Fiction 3: It is dangerous to use more than one nicotine replacement therapies at the same time.
Researchers suggest that two nicotine replacement therapy products can be used safely together when you are trying to quit.
For example, you may use nicotine replacement therapy patch for general relief of withdrawal symptoms and a nicotine replacement therapy gum or inhaler for sudden urges to smoke.
It is also important to remember that some people should not use nicotine replacement therapy, including pregnant women, teens, and people with serious health issues such as heart disease and stomach ulcers.
Fiction 4: Nicotine replacement therapy can be used only for the duration listed on the label.
You should talk to your doctor about this.
The duration listed on the label may work for some smokers, but if you feel extending your use would help you stay smoke-free, you may do it under your doctor’s instruction.
FDA experts also provide some facts about quitting smoking every smoker should know.
Fact 1: E-cigarettes are not an approved method to help people quit smoking.
Research has shown that e-cigarettes may expose users to some of the same toxic chemicals found in combustible cigarette smoke.
E-cigarettes smoking is not approved by the FDA as an aid to quit smoking.
You should talk to your doctor to determine which safe and effective method for quitting smoking is best for you.
Fact 2: Nicotine is not the primary cause of cancer from most tobacco products.
Research has shown that more than 7,000 chemicals are present in cigarette smoke, including more than 70 that can cause cancer, such as tobacco-specific nitrosamines, benzo-a-pyrene, benzene, and arsenic.
Nicotine is the main addictive substance in cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Although it has a number of toxic effects on the body, it is not the primary cause of cancer and other chronic smoking-related diseases.
Fact 3: Nicotine replacement therapy gum is different than regular gum.
Nicotine replacement therapy gum is most effective when used as directed.
You should start by placing the nicotine replacement therapy gum in your mouth and chewing until there is a strong taste or tingling sensation. It means that the nicotine is being released.
After that, you should stop chewing and place it between your cheek and gum.
When the taste or tingling sensation decreases, repeat the chew and park process. This process helps your body absorb the nicotine.
Fact 4: If nicotine replacement therapy didn’t work for you in the past, you still can try it again.
This is true. Many smokers have to try more than once to quit before being able to stop smoking, even though they used nicotine replacement therapies.
To encourages adult cigarette smokers to stop smoking, the FDA has launched a public education campaign called Every Try Counts.
The campaign aims to change attitudes and beliefs about what it means to quit smoking and increase motivation to try quitting again.
Researchers suggest that every try counts. So if you don’t succeed on the first try, do it again.
Copyright © 2019 Knowridge Science Report. All rights reserved.