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There are several brands of over-the-counter nicotine gum available in 2mg and 4mg doses. It is recommended that if you smoke within the first 30 minutes of getting up that you use the 4mg gum and the 2mg dose if you do not. 

How should I use the gum?

The gum is a hard-coated gum that you chew a little bit differently than normal gum. First you break the coating, chew the gum for a few moments, and when you have a peppery taste in your mouth, stop chewing the gum and place it between the cheek and gum. Leave it there (or “park it”) for a few moments and then chew again once the tingling goes away. Each piece lasts about 30 minutes.

One common mistake people make with the gum is that they tend to chew it like normal chewing gum, and it is definitely not regular gum. Constant chewing of the gum can cause nausea and hiccups. So the most important thing to remember is that you should chew it for a while, then park it. Then chew again, and park.

What are some of the advantages of using the gum?

  • Available without a prescription
  • Quick delivery of the nicotine into the system
  • Unnoticeable form of nicotine replacement
  • Cost is reasonable

What are some of the disadvantages of using the gum?

  • You cannot eat or drink while the gum is in your mouth
  • Some people have tooth or dental issues from chewing it
  • Does not work well with dentures
  • Side effects are jaw tenderness, dizziness, nausea and hiccups
Runner standing along the highway.

It’s a marathon, not a sprint.

Part of quitting smoking involves preparing yourself before the big race, and making sure you are listening to your body along the way. The road might not be easy, but it will be worth it at the finish.