Nicotine Inhaler

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Nicotine Inhalers provide will satisfy cravings without having to smoke.

Skip to: How to use - Pros & Cons - Effectivness - Side Effects

When quitting smoking, you face a battle on two fronts. The first is your chemical addiction to nicotine and the second is the psychological dependence on the rituals associated with smoking.

One great way to tackle both of these at the same time is with a nicotine inhaler, (also called an ‘inhalator’) which will satisfy your cravings and provide an effective substitute for the actual act of smoking.

If you’re looking to quit smoking with the aid of a nicotine inhaler, or aren’t sure whether it’s the right option - speak to a doctor online now.

Our GPs can talk through your efforts at quitting smoking, discuss possible medications that can help you out and if needed, prescribe a nicotine inhaler to help you kick the habit.

smoking inhaler
how-it-works

How do you use a nicotine inhaler?

Nicotine inhalers are used as a substitute for smoking and are only available by prescription from a doctor.

They consist of a plastic tube, which contains a nicotine cartridge, and a mouthpiece that lets you inhale the nicotine as a vapour.

A nicotine inhaler works by releasing vapour from the cartridge when you suck on it. It should be used any time you feel a strong urge to smoke.

You shouldn’t draw from a nicotine inhaler in the same way as a cigarette, but instead hold the vapour in your mouth for a few seconds - giving time for your body to absorb the nicotine. If you try and use your inhaler like a cigarette, you may experience a burning sensation at the back of your throat and potentially, indigestion or hiccups.

To work properly, you’ll need to warm up the cartridge a bit, although rolling it in the palms of your hand is usually sufficient to activate the vapour.

Nicotine inhalers can be used safely alongside other medications used to stop smoking, like patches or lozenges and are usually prescribed in a course that lasts a couple of months.

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Pros and cons of nicotine inhalers

Many people trying to quit smoking have found inhalers to be a fantastic aid in kicking the habit.

They provide an effective replacement for the physical act of smoking, as well as helping to prevent chemical cravings.

However, some find that simulating smoking with an inhaler isn’t enough to wean them off the habit.

When compared to other options like patches, lozenges or gum, inhalers are also more expensive and can’t be used discreetly.

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pros & cons of nasal spray
pros-cons

How effective are nicotine inhalers?

Research has found nicotine inhalers to be highly effective in helping people to quit smoking. One study compared inhalers to a placebo and found that they were up to 20 per cent more effective in the short term and about 10 per cent more effective six months on.

More recent research has also supported this finding, with a study from New Zealand finding that users of an inhaler were twice as likely to quit smoking as those using a placebo.

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Side effects of nicotine inhalers

Since they contain nicotine, inhalers can be highly addictive, so they shouldn’t be shared with non-smokers.

Most of the side effects associated with nicotine inhalers come from incorrect usage and include:

  • Hiccups
  • Sore throat
  • Irritation in the mouth
  • Congested or runny nose
  • Burping
  • Coughing
  • Indigestion and/or heartburn

In some rare cases, users have also experienced anxiety, depression, dizzy spells and diarrhoea.

side effect inhalers

Talk to a doctor about nicotine inhalers

If you’re looking for something to help you quit smoking and are wondering if an inhaler might be right for you - talk to a doctor today.


Our GPs can discuss your efforts to quit, provide expert advice on the challenges you’re facing and prescribe nicotine inhalers to help you kick the habit.

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