Nicotine Nasal Spray
Nicotine nasal spray is an aerosolized spray that contains nicotine, and functions similar to decongestant nasal spray products. When used, the nicotine absorbs into the body through the lining of the nose and can help relieve cravings for smokers trying to quit. Unlike other nicotine replacement therapy options, Nicotine nasal spray requires a prescription in most countries. Nicotine nasal sprays typically deliver a faster “hit” of nicotine than other nicotine replacement therapies and as a result can be preferred by heavy smokers trying to quit. However, because of this some people report becoming dependant on the spray more than solutions such as the patch or gum. The most common brand of Nicotine nasal spray is Nicotrol NS, not to be confused with the Nicotrol inhaler.
Quitting Smoking using Nicotine Nasal Spray
The usual starting dose is 1 spray in each nostril (a total of 2 sprays). One or 2 doses per hour is recommended. Take no more than 5 doses per hour or 40 doses per day. During the treatment period, a minimum of 8 doses per day is usually needed for the drug to be effective.
The dose of the spray should be individualized on the basis of nicotine dependence and the occurrence of symptoms associated with nicotine excess. The success or failure of smoking cessation is influenced by the quality, intensity and frequency of supportive care.
Recommended strategies for discontinuation of Nicotrol NS include: use only 1/2 a dose (1 spray) at a time, use the spray less frequently, keep a tally of daily usage, try to meet a steadily reducing usage target, skip a dose by not medicating every hour, or set a planned “quit date” for stopping use of the spray.