Patches, puffers and more

NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy)

When you're quitting, there are all sorts of medications available.  None of them is a magic cure, but they can all help you beat the cravings. These include NRT, bupropion hydrochloride (Zyban) and varenicline (Champix).

Replacing the nicotine

NRT (nicotine replacement therapy) gives you a low dose of a clean form of nicotine and reduces the withdrawal symptoms. It gives you time to adjust to a life without smoking. Available as patches, gum, nasal spray, inhalator, tablets or lozenges, NRT is suitable for most people. It's easy to use, discreet and some types are available over-the-counter.

Help on prescription

Other medications are only available on prescription and are best used as part of a support programme. Zyban suppresses the part of the brain that gives you a nicotine buzz and Champix works by stimulating the same brain cell receptors as nicotine.  Both make smoking less enjoyable.

"A few days into taking the tablets the cravings began to disappear...I was feeling healthier."

Claire Hawthorn, ex-smoker