Nicotrol Inhaler Alternatives

The Nicotrol Inhaler (nicotine inhaler) is one of many treatment options used by people trying to quit smoking; however, it's not always the best choice for every situation. In some cases, an alternative to the Nicotrol Inhaler may be preferred. These alternatives include other nicotine replacement products (such as a nicotine patch), other prescription drugs (such as Chantix), and nonmedication options (such as counseling).

Are There Alternatives to the Nicotrol Inhaler?

The Nicotrol® Inhaler (nicotine inhaler) is a prescription medication approved to help people stop smoking. It is a nicotine replacement medication. Like other nicotine replacement products, it works by providing a controlled dose of nicotine into the body, which can help reduce the uncomfortable symptoms of withdrawal that occur when people quit smoking.
 
Quitting smoking is difficult to do. Most people have to try several times before they are successful. The Nicotrol Inhaler is one of several treatments available to help people stop smoking. Alternatives to the Nicotrol Inhaler include:
 
  • Other nicotine replacement products
  • Prescription medications
  • Nonmedication treatment.
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Other Nicotine Replacement Products
Several nicotine replacement products are available as possible Nicotrol Inhaler alternatives. Nicotrol® NS (nicotine nasal spray) is another prescription medication. Instead of inhaling the medication, as is the case with the Nicotrol Inhaler, Nicotrol NS is sprayed into the nose.
 
Other nicotine replacement products are available over-the-counter (OTC), without a prescription, to people over the age of 18. These nonprescription options include:
 
  • Nicotine patch (Nicoderm® CQ®, Habitrol®) -- a patch applied to the skin
  • Nicotine gum (Nicorette® Gum) -- a gum that is chewed and discarded
  • Nicotine lozenge (Nicorette® Lozenge) -- a lozenge that dissolves in the mouth.
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Prescription Medications
Prescription medicines approved to help people stop smoking include Chantix® (varenicline) and Zyban® (bupropion SR). Chantix works by binding to nicotine receptors and preventing the normally pleasurable effects of smoking from occurring. It also helps to decrease nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
 
Zyban works on two brain chemicals, dopamine and norepinephrine. The exact way it works to help with smoking cessation is unknown. It seems to reduce the desire to smoke, and may also help reduce nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
 
Bupropion, the active ingredient in Zyban, is also the active ingredient in Wellbutrin®, Wellbutrin SR®, Wellbutrin XL®, and Aplenzin™. These medications are approved to treat depression, but are sometimes used "off-label" for smoking cessation.
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