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Ive been a smoker for 13 years now and it wasnt until last year that I noticed how much my health has been affected by puffing on those nasty nicotine sticks. I found that I was always out of breath and that i couldnt run around with the children as much as I used to, so after a good sit down with myself and a good talking to I decided to quit.
Im not going to lie, it hasnt worked yet, I did quit for 8 weeks with champix however the stresses of normal everyday life and other things killed my will power and I picked up a cig again. I have since brought the Niquitin Minis from my local Boots chemist as a start to slowly ween myself off a few cigarettes a day and it has worked.
The Niquitin Minis come in a pack of 3 and you can buy them at 2 different strengths depending on how much you smoke. The 4mg is for the more heavy smokers, something I have become in the past few months, going from 10 cigarettes a day to 20+ and the 1.5mg for the lighter smoker. I brought a pack of each thinking I would be able to have the 1.5mg when doing the housework and other activities when i dont need a cigarette, I just want one. The 4mg is for when I feel im going to pull my hair out.
They come in 3 different flavours that i know of, original, mint and cherry and although i havent tried the cherry ones yet, I do feel that the mint one does take a little bit of the awful taste away, something you never notice whilst having a cig but you can with these minis.
They sell at £14.99 at Boots, not cheap but certainly cheaper than a packet of 20 cigarettes everyday. You get 20 lozenges in a tub although your not aloud to take more than 15 per day.
On the back of the tub it tells you that it takes around 10 to 15 minutes for the lozenge to dissolve however i can not suck on the lozenge as it does make me feel a little sick so i simply place it just under my lip next to my gum and move it around every now and again and it takes me nearly an hour for it to disolve.
I found with these lozenges that it took the urge to have a cigarette away, even if it is for a short amount of time. Instead of smoking 20+ a day I have been missing out around 4 to 5 cigarettes a day but it hasnt done anymore than that. I think with a little more help with something else i.e patches, this product will work alot better.
I do have to stress that you do need will power with them, like every other nicotine replacements out there you need the will power for it to work. I have next to no will power at all and I found that if i had a little more this product might work a little better for me but it is a start in the right direction.
If you are thinking of stopping smoking or you do want to stop, give these a try and you might be suprised with how you have got on with them. My friend has smoked for 20 years and has tried a number of times to stop, she picked these up and hasnt gone back to cigarettes again, so it works for some but not for others.
In my eternal optimism, I often hope to find that miracle product which will allow me to give up smoking painlessly and with great ease... On my latest never ending search to find said product, I came across NiQuitin Minis in my local Boots. With a single pack of 20 Cherry flavour lozengers costing just £3.49 (that's cheaper than a pack of ten cigarettes...) - I figured it was worth a shot. You can buy the mint variety but they only seemed to stock them in the large bulk packets and I wanted to test the effectiveness first before buying in bulk.
The lozengers come in a little blue, plastic tube which is about two inches high and half an inch thick. The lid is childproof I think, well, I had trouble getting in to it at least... A broken nail and a cut to my finger later, I finally tipped out a small, white lozenger into the palm of my hand. Each lozenger is a little less than one cm in length and probably half a cm in depth and has a little "c" engraved onto the top. Presumably the c refers to the cherry flavour.
Each lozenger smells strongly of cherry, well not actually of cherry but more like the sickly sweet smell of Coke Cherry. The taste is very similar to Cherry Coke but after the initial cherry taste has worn away there is the distinct taste of nicotine which is quite unpleasant. I also found it to burn slightly on my lips and tongue.
The lozenger took about fifteen minutes to dissolve on my tongue as the instructions had suggested it would. The all important part though, did it reduce the nicotine craving? Nope it did not. It just made me feel slightly sick and want to go and brush my teeth.
I'm sure there are products out there that work effectively in assisting smokers to quit - I have heard good things about these lozengers - for me though - the search goes on...
I had been smoking for over 20 years, having started with the odd sneaky smoke by the running track at secondary school when I was 14. Throughout that time I made many half-hearted attempts to quit, usually lasting no more than a couple of weeks before I caved in and started smoking again. Last year, when I had my 35th birthday and realised I was on the downhill slope to 40, I became determined to stop for good, before I started to see the adverse effects on my health.
Being a realist, I recognised that I was not going to be able to give up by willpower alone. Having tried several methods of nicotine replacement therapy in my previous failed attempts I was reluctant to return to a method that I had not been successful with previously. After doing a bit of research I found Niquitin Minis, which are tiny white lozenges, that I felt would be easy and convenient to use, unobtrusive even in work.
Niquitin Minis come in 2 strengths, one containing 4mg of nicotine, and one containing 1.5mg of nicotine. They also come in Original, Mint and a new Cherry flavour. The minis are available in single packs, containing 20 mini lozenges, and triple packs, containing 60 mini lozenges. Available from most high street pharmacies as well as online from Amazon and similar sites, the price varies according to strength and the size of the pack, but you can expect to pay under £15.00 for a triple pack of 4mg Minis. They are produced by Glaxosmithkline, a familiar household name for over the counter painkillers, medications, toothpastes etc. The reverse of the packaging displays brief instructions for use, health warnings and a list of ingredients, and there is a leaflet with full instructions enclosed in the pack.
I mentioned the flavours, but don't be misled, these are certainly not lozenges anyone would want to use for pleasure. The taste is virtually undetectable, as the nicotine released in the mouth quickly overpowers any intended flavour with a strong almost burning sensation (think extra strong Fishermans Friends). For me, this was actually useful rather than unpleasant, as I felt that they were clearly doing their job.
I started with the stronger 4mg mini lozenges, but within 3 weeks I was using the lower strength 1.5mg mini lozenges. The idea is that the lozenges are not sucked, but placed in the mouth, either under the tongue or between the cheek and gum, to dissolve, so the nicotine can be absorbed quickly through the soft tissue in the mouth into the blood stream, and reduce the physical craving. I found these mini lozenges to be really effective, and for me they reduced my cravings within less than a minute of popping one in my mouth. The maximum number of Minis that should be used in a day is 15, and I found that 8 -10 per day were sufficient for me initially. I had previously smoked 20 - 25 per day, and I didn't ration my use of the Minis, but had one whenever I felt the need. Over a period of 8 weeks I gradually reduced both the strength and frequency of Minis, until after 10 weeks I found I was frequently going the whole day without having needed to use one.
They are not a magic wand and are certainly not going to give up for you, a significant amount of willpower and determination are still required, but they provided me with the additional support I needed and I don't think I would have managed to quit, at least not without falling out with several friends and family members, without them!
As with all medications, there are some adverse side effects that people may experience, and Minis are not recommended for anyone suffering from stomach problems. I personally experienced only minor temporary side effects, which were explained on the advice leaflet included in the pack, and in my opinion were a small inconvenience compared to the benefits. Although everyone will react differently, my experience of adverse effects included; a sore throat for the first few days, a sore tongue (probably my fault as I tend to play/fiddle with the lozenge with my tongue), and intermittent slight stomach upsets which disappeared after a week or two.
So they worked for me (I feel safe saying that now, 1 year since quitting!), but are there any negatives? I found the lids of the plastic tubes they are contained in to be extremely frustrating. They have a sort of 'child-proof' design, which requires you to push in a very stiff plastic lever, and keep it depressed, before flipping open the cap. This is a considerably more difficult design than the familiar 'push and squeeze' or 'line up the arrows' design of child-proof caps. I experienced a very sore thumb, and snapped several fingernails through opening these lids. Eventually I overcame this by decanting the mini lozenges into a different container. This was an inconvenience for me, but I would imagine it would be impossible for people with health problems such as arthritis that cause difficulties with manual dexterity.
Overall I found these Niquitin Minis met my needs, and were definitely an unobtrusive way of easing my cravings.