Information on stop smoking aids
There are a range of stop smoking aids, from Nicotine Replacement therapy (NRT) to support services.
The nicotine patch releases a controlled daily amount of nicotine into the skin. It produces lower levels of nicotine than smoking, but these are high enough to prevent withdrawal symptoms.
Stop smoking services
The usual format is:
- pre-quit appointment where you set a quit date
- quit date appointment
- weekly appointments for at least four weeks after quit date
To find your local stop smoking service, use our locator.
If NRT has failed in the past, a prescription medication may help your quit attempt. There are two options available, varenicline and bupropion. Varenicline is commonly known by the brand name ‘Champix’ and bupropion by the brand name ‘Zyban’. Research has shown that Champix is more successful than Zyban at helping people quit and also has fewer side effects. Because of this, HSC-funded services in Northern Ireland are advised to consider Champix before Zyban when an alternative to NRT is required.* This will depend on your own individual case as not all medications are suitable for everyone. You should discuss this with your GP or smoking advisor.
*Northern Ireland Formulary 2012