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Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT): lozenge

The NRT lozenge is designed to help you to quit smoking. The nicotine lozenge is now available at a reduced price through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). Read about how to use the lozenge, its effectiveness and where to buy it.

The lozenge is a nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) product that looks a bit like a cough lolly. Mini lozenges are sold under the brand name 'Minis'.

How to use the nicotine lozenge

When you feel like a cigarette, put a lozenge into your mouth and move it around your mouth from time to time. Do not chew or swallow it. Nicotine is absorbed through the mouth and slowly released into your body. 

How the nicotine lozenge helps

It helps by replacing some of the nicotine you would normally get from smoking. You may still get cravings but the nicotine lozenge takes the edge off. Using the lozenge can also help reduce nicotine withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, difficulty concentrating, frustration, restlessness and anxiety. 

Pros and cons of the nicotine lozenge

The nicotine lozenges are one of cheapest NRT products, and they are fast acting. The nicotine gets to the brain quickly (after five minutes). Some people tell us they don’t like the flavour of the lozenge (but make sure you’re using as directed). 

Effectiveness of the nicotine lozenge

Using the nicotine lozenges doubles your chance of quitting. Combination therapy  – using patches plus the lozenge – is even more effective again. If you add Quitline to the mix, you’ll have an even better chance. 

How to get the NRT lozenge at the discounted PBS rate

You can buy nicotine lozenges at pharmacies or supermarkets. You can also get discounted lozenges on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). To get PBS lozenges you need to get a prescription from your doctor, which you take to your pharmacist.

Lozenges are available on the PBS in 2 mg or 4 mg strength. 

How to best use the nicotine lozenge?

You typically start using the lozenges on your quit day (but you can also use it to cut down and quit). For best results, and this is important, use the lozenges for 8–12 weeks.

The lozenge comes in two strengths: 4mg and 2mg (or 4 mg and 1.5mg for the mini lozenge). The 4mg lozenge is best if you smoke 20 cigarettes a day or more. The lozenge also works best if you work on stress management and breaking routines . 

For more information: talk to your doctor, pharmacist or Quitline. Request a Quitline callback. Or download the nicotine lozenge fact sheet.

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