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Nicotine polacrilex is the form of nicotine found in oral products used to help people quit smoking cigarettes. The nicotine is bound to a resin in these products to facilitate controlled release and aid in the absorption through the mucous membranes in the mouth. Used as directed, these products can provide a means to ease nicotine withdrawal symptoms and overcome the addiction to smoking. These products have some risks and side effects but may be much less than the health risks associated with continuing to smoke.
Products containing nicotine polacrilex most often take the form of gum or occasionally lozenges and are sold under many brand names. When a person stops smoking, he or she usually experiences a range of unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, and in some cases these symptoms are bothersome enough that the person goes back to cigarettes. Nicotine polacrilex can help the person deal with withdrawal by providing a replacement source of nicotine without the other dangerous health effects of smoking.
The dosage of nicotine polacrilex varies for each individual, and generally depends on the extent of the person's smoking habit. There are most often two available dosages, one for light smokers who smoke less than 25 cigarettes per day and a higher dosage for heavier smokers. Usually a person chews a piece of the gum each time he or she experiences a cigarette craving.
Nicotine polacrilex gum is used differently from regular gum. It is chewed slowly until there is a tingling sensation or a strong taste, and then placed between the chewer's gums and cheek until the taste or sensation fades or for a half an hour. As a person experiences fewer cravings, they are gradually supposed to chew less gum. In this way, the person seeking to quit smoking slowly weans off the nicotine habit with fewer withdrawal symptoms. The gum is usually used for a period of approximately three months. Users should follow the instructions on the packaging.
There are some cases where a person should not use nicotine polacrilex, such as if they are pregnant or if they are still smoking. Before using this product, a person should discuss his or her medical history with a doctor, including any other medications or supplements being taken. Mild side effects of nicotine polacrilex can include heartburn, nausea, nausea, dental issues, and mouth or jaw pain. More serious side effects that require medical attention may include vomiting, weakness, dizziness, irregular or abnormal heartbeat, or signs of an allergic reaction like hives, swelling, or difficulty breathing.