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Stop Smoking Gum - To Use Or Not To Use?

Nov 28, 2007
Of the various smoking deaddiction methods available, the stop smoking gum is becoming very popular in recent times. Part of its popularity stems from the fact that it is extremely convenient to use. It only has to be unwrapped and popped into the mouth - that is all. And chewed like a normal gum. This simple gum is supposed to highly decrease the smokers craving for a cigarette and gradually take him or her away from the smoking habit.

The stop smoking gum is considered to be a safe remedy for smoking cessation. In fact, it is considered to be so safe that it is available over-the-counter in the US and is also available in the check-in shopping malls. But, is the stop smoking gum really as safe as it is made out to be? Can a smoker safely use it to curb his or her smoking habit? This does require some discussion.

The first thing to remember is that the stop smoking gum contains nicotine. Yes, you heard it right! The active component of the gum is nicotine. What is the logic of using nicotine to cure a nicotine addiction, you ask? Well, this works in a way. Let us see how. Nicotine is the addictive substance in the cigarette. It is the substance that keeps the smoker going back to the smoker each time. But nicotine does not cause the physical harm (that credit goes to the tar in the cigarette).

Therefore, there is a rational reason for using nicotine in the gum. The persons craving for nicotine would be met, and they would also be saved from the damage to their body through the cigarette. Stop smoking gums are available in different concentrations of nicotine, with the highest being 4 milligrams. Heavy smokers begin with the more concentrated ones, and in due course of time, step down to lower concentrations. Over time, the addiction reduces and goes away completely.

But there is a body of experts who think this may not happen at all. They maintain that nicotine is an addictive substance and as long as it is introduced into the body, the addiction would not cease. In fact, there is a danger of an addiction to the gum itself. Several medical experts have found this contention to have some truth in it. That is the reason why many nonsmokers - and alarmingly, some underage children too - are buying these gums. It is enough evidence that the nicotine gum can create an addiction of its own.

Even the amount of nicotine that is present in the stop smoking gum can pose an issue. These gums can contain differing amounts of nicotine - ranging from 1 milligram to 4 milligram. It must be noted here that each cigarette contains about 1 milligram of nicotine. Therefore, the higher concentrations of the gum contain as much nicotine as four cigarettes put together. In addition, the gum can be kept in the mouth for as much as thirty minutes, which does mean more contact of the addictive substance.

The use of all nicotine replacement therapies is coming under strong controversy nowadays. The basic idea of this therapy was to keep people addicted to nicotine, but to reduce the health hazards that cigarettes cause. But these methods do not seem to be working in the broader sense. There are many people who have tried gums and other nicotine replacement therapies and then have gone back to smoking cigarettes just because their addiction was never really cured at all.

All in all, it is up to you to make the decision whether to use the stop smoking gum or not. Now that you know the facts, you be the judge.
About the Author
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