Some variants of NICORETTE® Gum are out of supply in South Africa. The out of supply situation relates to process improvements being made in the production...
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Nicorette® Gum provides flexible dosing of nicotine, which allows smokers to control cravings when they feel the urge to smoke. It is available in two strengths, Nicorette® 2mg Gum (low strength) and Nicorette® 4mg Gum (full strength). The Gum is available in regular and mint flavours. Nicorette® 2mg Gum is suitable for those people who are low dependent smokers and the Nicorette® 4mg Gum is suitable for those people who are high dependent smokers. The nicotine contained in the gum is absorbed into the bloodstream through the lining of the mouth. Unlike confectionery gum, Nicorette® Gum should not be chewed continuously.

Instead, a piece of gum should be chewed slowly until there is a pronounced taste in the mouth. The chewing action releases the nicotine from the gum. The gum should then be “parked” between the cheek and gum to allow the nicotine to be absorbed.
Dosage should be gradually reduced over time. Recommended period of use is at least 12 weeks. The entire range of Nicorette products is available either on prescription or over the counter via pharmacies all over South Africa.

Dosage and administration
  • The patient must give up smoking completely. The gradual cutting down of tobacco consumption will not work.
  • Nicorette® has been prescribed as part of a programme to help the patient stop smoking.
  • Whenever the patient feels the need to smoke, one piece of gum should be placed in the mouth.
  • When the gum is chewed, nicotine is slowly released and is absorbed through the lining of the mouth.
  • The gum should be chewed very slowly until it is tasted or a slight tingling is felt in the mouth. Because of its nicotine content, the gum does not taste like an ordinary chewing gum.
  • As soon as the gum can be tasted, chewing must stop.
  • After the taste or tingling is almost gone (about one minute), the gum should be chewed slowly again until the taste is more pronounced. Then chewing should be stopped again.
  • The gum should be chewed slowly for 30 minutes to release most of the nicotine. The patient should not expect the gum to give the same quick satisfaction that smoking does.
  • Most people find that 10 to 12 pieces per day of Nicorette® 2 mg or 4 mg are enough to control their urge to smoke. If this is not the case, consult your doctor or pharmacist. Do not use more than 15 pieces in 24 hours. Depending on the patient's needs, the rate of chewing and the time between pieces can be adjusted.
  • If the gum is chewed too fast, the patient may experience effects similar to those experienced when inhaling cigarette smoke for the first time, or when smoking too fast. These effects include light-headedness, nausea and vomiting, throat and mouth irritation, hiccups and stomach upset. Most of these effects are controlled by chewing more slowly. See instructions above. Some other effects sometimes seen – particularly during the first few days of using gum – include mouth ulcers, jaw muscle ache, headache, heart palpitations and more than the usual amount of saliva in the mouth. There are other side-effects which have been infrequently reported with the use of Nicorette®. Patients should be encouraged to discuss any questions, and to report any disturbing side effects.
  • Do not exceed the recommended dosage.
  • If the patient accidentally swallows a piece of gum, no adverse effects should be experienced. Overdose could occur if many pieces are chewed simultaneously or in rapid succession. IN CASE OF ACCIDENTAL OVERDOSAGE OR IF A CHILD CHEWS OR SWALLOWS ONE OR MORE PIECES OF THE GUM, A DOCTOR OR THE LOCAL POISON CONTROL CENTRE SHOULD BE CONTACTED IMMEDIATELY.
  • As the urge to smoke fades, gradually reduce the number of pieces of gum chewed each day. This may be possible within two or three months. Unless advised otherwise, no attempt to stop using the gum should be made until the craving is satisfied with one or two pieces a day. The gum should not be used for more than 3 months.
  • Patients should remember to carry the gum with them at all times in case they feel the sudden urge to smoke again. DON'T FORGET THAT ONE CIGARETTE IS ENOUGH TO START THE SMOKING HABIT AGAIN.

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