Cigarette smoking can be really addictive and can become habit forming. Bad habits don’t change overnight. Quitting is a difficult task. The cold-turkey stage can be a tremendous nightmare. Many substance abusers often go back to zero. We all know that cigarette smoking is one of the many causes of death due to cardiac diseases, pulmonary diseases and several cancers. Cigarette smoking predisposes a person to develop chronic obstructive pulmonary disease such as emphysema or chronic bronchitis. Hypertension, heart attacks and strokes are results of unhealthy lifestyles. Cessation of tobacco smoking results in a lower rate of cardiac events. A positive attitude is most likely needed in order to achieve good outcomes in quitting. Participating in an educational class, support group, or behavioral program can gradually change your habits and outlooks in life and health.
A Patchwork Pathos
In the event of technology and continuous research, Nicotine patches were invented to address the withdrawal concerns of people who are trying to quit smoking. Nicotine is one of the most heavily abused substances in the world with numbers of users rising because of its popularity and legality. Nicotine acts as a stimulant in humans and mammals and accounts for the dependence-forming properties of tobacco smoking. Nicotine patches is a medication with brandnames such as Nicotrol, Nicoderm CQ, and Habitrol. They do have same systemic effects to a user: catecholamine release, thus increasing the heart rate and blood pressure, and increased platelet adhesion. The goal of care is to effectively help the user quit smoking as early as possible. They have same systemic effects and as with tobacco smoking but less hazard to the lungs. It makes the heart rate faster and makes the blood pressure increased. Nicotine patches should be used for the shortest time and at the lowest effective dose.
Nicotine patches work to substitute the nicotine from cigarettes. It is applied transdermally. When a person stops smoking, his nicotine blood levels drop quickly. This drop can cause craving for another stick, irritability, nervousness, headache, weight gain, difficulty in concentration, and etc.—are the usual symptoms of withdrawal from tobacco smoking. This medication product should also not be abused as it can cause dependency. It should only be used to assist in surpassing the withdrawal stages of quitting as it also has side effects.
Things to Remember
- Before using any product, it is a must to read the instructions and guidelines to be ensure safety. It the product is prescribed by a physician, follow the doctor’s orders and instructions. Brand names and manufacturers have different guidelines. It will not hurt to read the information on the packaging or leaflets before using a product.
- Do not wear nicotine patch for more than twenty four hours. Doses and time of application depends on your cigarette packs per day. The physician computes for the recommended dose. For over the counter patches, read instructions on leaflets carefully.
- It is recommended to clip the hair when patch is too applied on hairy areas. Shaving is not recommended as it may cause irritation and abrasion to the skin. Do not apply the patch on wounded, irritated skin.
- Do apply nicotine patch on clean skin. Do not apply it over a skin with lotion, moisturizer or make up.
- Rotate sites of application in order to prevent skin irritation. Apply the patch to another site from time to time. It is necessary to wait for at least one week before you reapply a patch on the same skin site.
- Do not wear more than one patch at a time. Nicotine has an effect of increasing the heart rate and blood pressure. Abusing the medication product will predispose you to several heart events. It pays to wait for results. Patience is a virtue.
- Discard used patches in a proper manner. Be mindful of pets, children and garbage collectors that might get contaminated with the product you have used. When the discarded product touches their skin, the drug is quickly absorbed and they will have the same effects as well. Proper disposal requires folding the used patch in half on its sticky side and wrapping it with a protective plastic or paper. Throw in yellow or hazardous waste baskets.
- When using a twenty four hour patch, apply the patch at the same time everyday in order to have an ideal schedule.
- Nicotine patches should be used not more than 8 weeks in order to prevent withdrawal symptoms after using the nicotine patch. It can also be habit forming. Usage should be abruptly discontinued as it can cause withdrawal symptoms and should be tapered. Doses should be decreased weekly.