Think about Your addiction

Here’s something to think about.

Nicotine is very addictive. It makes your brain release feel-good chemicals. The problem is, these wear off quickly and reduce over time, making you smoke more and more to get the same feeling.

Nicotine is what causes your addiction to tobacco.

When you inhale smoke, the nicotine is absorbed into your bloodstream. It then travels to all parts of your body, including your brain. That’s when you get the release of ‘feel good’ chemicals.

But those ‘feel good’ effects begin to wear off as your body gets used to the nicotine, meaning you need to get more nicotine to have the same effect – just like any other type of addictive drug. It’s a very powerful chemical.

Managing nicotine addiction and withdrawals

The strength of your addiction, and the difficulty of breaking it, depends on how much you’re smoking. When you go without cigarettes, it’s common to feel temporary nicotine withdrawal symptoms like strong cravings, irritability, trouble concentrating, restlessness, anxiety, low mood or having trouble sleeping. Any of these sound familiar?

Thinking about using Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) or quitting medication?

If you have a nicotine addiction, using NRT or quitting medication (Champix or Zyban) can make a real difference. They help balance out your nicotine levels and reduce cravings, making it easier to cope with withdrawal symptoms.

Some people experience confusion about NRT products and how to use them correctly. But not to worry, Quitline can give you advice on how to select the right products and how to use them correctly to avoid side-effects and to increase their chances of success. To find out more about NRT products, click here.

Champix (varenicline) and Zyban (bupropion) are non-nicotine prescription medications that can reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Research studies show that Champix can more than double your chance of quitting, and Zyban nearly doubles your chance. Medications won’t stop all cravings entirely, but they will work on the nicotine addiction.

To find out more about quitting medication, click here.

Talk to people you know who have successfully quit, ask them what worked for them, they might have some useful strategies that will help you to stop too.