Nicotine patches are small patches applied to parts of the body (usually your arm) and were developed to help smokers deal with nicotine cravings when they stop smoking. They don’t provide an instant hit of nicotine like a cigarette, but they give a measured dose of nicotine each hour that they are worn.
Depending on what you prefer you can choose between two types of patches; one that is worn during the day, and one worn at night.
A day time patch delivers nicotine for sixteen hours. You put it on when you wake up and take it off before you go to bed. There is currently only one brand of day patches made by Nicorette – they are called Invisi. This is an updated version of the day time patch and is designed to reduce the risk of the patch peeling off when it rubs up against clothing. The benefit of this type of patch is that it combats cravings throughout the day. Research shows that you are more likely to give into cravings in the afternoon, so the day time patch helps you through this by increasing the dose of nicotine at this time to help you cope with cravings.
If you would prefer a patch that delivers a more consistent dose of nicotine, but over a longer period there is also a twenty-four hour patch available. This comes in two brands, Nicotinell or NiQuitin CQ. Both brands deliver a steady amount of a twenty-four hour period. One of the draw backs of this type of patch is that wearing them at night can disturb your sleep but your body will usually get used to the patch and any sleep disturbance should stop. To help combat this it is advised that the twenty-four hour patch is changed every morning. The twenty-four hour patch can also be used as a day patch too, meaning you can take it off before you go to bed. However, you won’t get the full amount of nicotine compared to a day patch.
So what are the draw backs of using patches? Both the day and night patches can cause some irritation to the skin. Don’t worry, this is just nicotine passed through your skin and into your bloodstream. As this isn’t the normal way to absorb nicotine it can cause tingling and soreness for the first few days of use. This should wear off as you get used to wearing the patch.