Nicotine Inhaler

The nicotine inhaler is a smoking cessation aid which looks a lot like a real cigarette. In fact, the inhaler (which is sold in the United States under the brand name Nicotrol) was specifically designed with a mouth piece, to imitate the hand-to-mouth movements which smokers associate with having a cigarette. Many smokers, when they first try to quit, struggle to do without the familiar feeling of holding a cigarette in their fingers or between their lips.

How Does It Work?

You puff on a nicotine inhaler in the same you way do on a real cigarette. The nicotine inhaler consists of a mouthpiece and detachable cartridges which contain nicotine and menthol. When you put the inhaler between your lips and breathe in, the air which passes through the device becomes saturated with nicotine. Each time you puff on the inhaler, you hold the air that you've inhaled inside your mouth for several seconds and then exhale the air. This allows the nicotine in the air to absorb via the lining of your mouth and throat. You should not breathe the nicotine-saturated air into your lungs.

How Effective Is It?

The nicotine inhaler helps control the withdrawal symptoms that come with quitting smoking and gives you something to do with your hands and mouth. Studies have found that the inhaler is most effective when used alongside other quitting smoking methods (for example, changes in routine and behavior). The nicotine-hit comes more slowly with the nicotine inhaler than it does with a real cigarette. Therefore, you need to know how to use the inhaler correctly to get the best effect. Each puff from a nicotine inhaler contains 10 times less nicotine than a draw from an ordinary cigarette, and you'll feel the maximum effect of the nicotine inhaler approximately 10 to 15 minutes after you finish puffing. You're recommended to take frequent puffs for around 20 minutes each time you use the inhaler. Each cartridge contains between 300 and 400 puffs.

The producers of the nicotine inhaler recommend that you are realistic about your needs when you start using the inhaler. Of course, you control how many puffs you take and how many cartridges you use - it's better to start at a high dose (although always use the lowest possible for your needs) and then cut down - than to start at a dose that is unrealistically low and may cause you to fall at the first hurdle.


If you relapse while using the inhaler and smoke at the same time, you may experience the unpleasant effects of nicotine overdose, which include nausea, dizziness and digestive problems. You may even become more addicted to nicotine than you were before. The nicotine inhaler is not recommended for anyone who has chest or heart problems, including asthma. You should consult your doctor before using the inhaler if you have any doubts. Most people use the inhaler for between six and 12 weeks. Do not use the inhaler for more than six months. Side effects of using the nicotine inhaler may include coughing and irritation of the throat.