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You chew nicotine gum as a way to help yourself quit using tobacco. The gum contains nicotine and feels and looks like chewing gum. When you chew the gum, the nicotine begins to slowly release into your mouth. Then you hold the gum in your mouth between your cheek and gums.
Cigarette smoke passes nicotine almost instantly into the blood through the lining of the lungs, and the blood takes it to the brain in a few seconds. The nicotine in the gum takes several minutes to reach the brain. This makes the "hit" less rapid with the gum than with a cigarette. Nicotine gum also delivers much less nicotine to your body than a cigarette would.
Nicotine gum comes in several flavours and in two strengths: 2 mg and 4 mg. Start with the 4 mg strength if you smoke 25 or more cigarettes a day or if your healthcare provider recommends it.
Do not chew nicotine gum like normal gum. Instead, use the "chew and park" method:
It is possible to become dependent on nicotine gum, but this is rare.
Nicotine gum does have side effects. Read the package insert before you use this medicine.
You may be getting too much nicotine if you have:
If you have any of these after taking nicotine gum stop using it and see a doctor right away.Side effects may include:
This may be because the gum wasn’t used in the right way. Please review how to use the gum. Stop using this gum and see a doctor right away if you have an allergic reaction.Allergic reaction symptoms may include:
Talk to your pharmacist about how quitting might affect other medicine you take. Your body may respond to some medicine differently once you stop using tobacco. Some people have had suicidal thoughts when they try to quit smoking without medicines. Sometimes quitting smoking can lead to some mental health problems you already have, like depression, getting worse. Before taking any quit-smoking treatment, tell your healthcare provider (doctor, pharmacist, or nurse):
Adaptation Date: 3/2/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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