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Re: Chantix
May 24, 2007
Hi there Sarmee,
Congratz on decideing to quit!

I'm no expert, but I will tell you about my short experience, thus far, with Chantix. I am on day 5 of the prescription & I really think this is a miracle drug. I've been smoking for about 9 years now, anywhere from 1 pack up to 2 packs a day. In the past I had quit coold turkey & that had lasted for about 3 months.

When I quit the cold turkey way, I was very very moody, on edge, and need I say a tad b*tchy for at least 2 weeks. Non-stop dreams about smoking, constant cravings. I hated driving places because thats when I smoke the most. I felt like I was always (as they say) "feening" for a cig.

You say your wedding is 1 week away & that is when you want to quit? I say go get the prescription now - they actually advise you start the program 1 week prior to your quit date. Reason being, you want to slowly introduce the drug into your system, which will reduce possible side effects. It's perfectly fine to continue smoking your first week on the drug (the starter pack).

From my understanding, the drug works by blocking nicotine receptors in the brain. It releases dompamine the "feel good" chemical in the brain. That "relaxed" sense u would get from a cigg.

Beleive it or not, on day "1" of the starter pack, I noticed a difference within 4 hrs of taking the first pill (I didnt wait the full week to quit because I already had a date picked). The best way to describe the feeling of smoking after on the drug is "no satisfaction". Sure, you have your cigg, but it's as if u got nothing out of almost feels like you have already had a cigg. Hope that makes sense, thats just how I felt.

I'm smoke free now & not even finished with the 1 week starter kit. I'm not moody, not on edge...I "almost" feel like I never picked up smoking. Don't get me wrong, you will get some cravings...but most are physical or just out of habit, and they pass quickly. So far, I havent been "feening" at all. I haven't felt like "I HAVE to have a cigg now!". I might kind of want one, but the "NEED" is gone.

For me at least, this has been a cake-walk compared to cold turkey. Hope this info helps!
Re: Chantix
May 25, 2007
DH, my mother and I are all on it. We started the starter pack on 5/7. My mother is a 40-year smoker, 3 packs a day; I'm a 21-year smoker, 2 1/2 packs a day; DH is a 10-year smoker, 1/2 pack a day. DH was able to quit smoking the closest to his quit date (one week after starting the med). My actual quit date ended up being 15 days after I started the med. My mom is hoping that this Monday will be her quit date, three weeks after she began the program.

I think this is different for everyone?

Either way, you definitely KNOW when you're done. Cigarettes begin to taste horrible on the med. They burn, too, burn your throat and mouth. If you enjoy smoking, this is a wonderful medication, because you suddenly don't enjoy them at all anymore.

It doesn't make quitting a piece of cake -- at least for DH & I, anyway. It's still REALLY hard! We're emotional, irritable ... I mean, it's taken the "edge" off, I suppose. But even last night, in our fog/zone of our initial days without cigs, we both said to each other that we didn't believe a cigarette would make us feel better. Honestly. Now, in all the times we've tried to quit before, we've never said that!

There are some side effects that some suffer from that you should read about, be aware of and have a plan of action to address if they're moderate. Vivd dreams and nausea are affecting me the most. I'm having to split my pills in half and take them four times a day instead of one pill twice a day. I did not have this problem the first week, only when I went up to the full dose.

You can do it!
Re: Chantix
May 25, 2007
Yeah, I really haven't had many side effects...I only felt naucious once, and that passed within 20 minutes. But so far, I have had the most awesome dreams while on the drug, and I think I sleep better too.
Re: Chantix
May 31, 2007
MA2AZ, thanks so much for sharing your experience. While I'm thrilled to have found something that really seems to be helping in my quit, I'm also nervous about how new the pill is, how every time I turn on the news, some drug company is facing countless lawsuits because a new drug was released either too early or just shouldn't have been at all.

Your experience, as well as Cindy's, is so helpful to me. I'd hate to suffer from some sort of placebo effect, but I'm really keeping a very watchful eye on side effects. I already know I don't want to be on this for three months. I'll give six weeks a shot, maybe eight. Frankly, I don't think my knee can handle three months of it. I'm *thinking* the three to six months the maker of the drug recommends is self-serving. The drug helps with initial cravings for nicotine, withdrawals, with cigarettes being unsatisfying. It doesn't do anything for habit. I figure after being quit for a month or so, the rest is really up to me and no drug can really help me there.

Every quit website I've been to is either extremely pro a certain aid (or just cold turkey; that those who use any aids at all will ultimately fail) or crazy pro Chantix. This is really the only one where you can share all kinds of experiences, pills, NRT, CT, weaning, good and bad.

Have you been smoke free since you stopped the Chantix? Did you have to use another aid?
Re: Chantix
May 31, 2007
Hello, everyone, what a great message board this is. I've been on Chantix for 22 days now, smoke free for 3 days. No real side effects from Chantix. I had so hoped that it would make smoking taste bad or something like I'd heard it did for others, but it didn't. And what a rough 3 days, seems I can't stop thinking about wanting a cig, it's a constant battle with myself to not have one. I do have to admit that when I did smoke my last few cigs they really didn't do much for me. But I can't stop thinking I want one. I do feel like I've lost my best friend tho. I enjoyed the cigs, with coffee, in the evenings relaxing on the deck, taking a break at work (that's seems to be the worst times). Now looking for something that will fulfill that void. I've got to find it cause I really don't want to smoke anymore. Congrats to all that have beat this habit. And thanks for all the encouragement you have given each other.
Re: Chantix
Jun 4, 2007
Hi All,
As per usual, the people who initiallytake any new meds are the real guinea pigs. I dread hearing any real serious side effects Chantix can/ may cause a few years from now. Currently I am 15 days in the hole with no smokes. Chantix is truly a miracle. I could probably go off of it right now and be OK, but I will probably finish out my entire presciption- ($114). I wish I had known about it sooner. It really, really works for anyone who is truly, emphatically ready to quit smoking. You have to want to quit in your your heart and mind. Chantix doesn't make you quit. It just makes it EASIER to quit.
No bad side effects for me. Had felt groggy in the beginning, but it's gone now. OF course everyday I think about lighting up, but it passes. Like I said, it isn't all on the pill. You have to show some self restraint too.
Best of Luck to all of you. I am rooting for ya!!!
Re: Chantix
Jun 17, 2007
Hi All-
So glad to read the discussions about Chantix, both pro and con. I am on day five of the starter pack, and am set to stop smoking on Wednesday, 6/20/07. So far, I have had none of the side effects, but I have noticed that just this morning my cigarettes are starting to taste a bit "funny", and make my mouth feel weird. I am committed to quitting, and this drug was recommended by a supervisor. I am under a lot of stress usually (Ph.D grad student), so I am hoping that the Chantix will help me find a way to deal with that stress other than picking up a cigarette.
I will keep updating as the time draws closer.
Thanks, and I may call on all of you for some support in the coming week.
Re: Chantix
Jun 17, 2007
I am alittle bit worried...I feel kinda like a guinea pig being on chantix...I am just scarred that they dont know enough about this drug and its long term side effects..I have a really hard time sleeping at night its like my legs twitch and I toss and turn. I also have very vivid dreams but only sleep for an hour at a time and then wake up. I also feel like a fog is in my head. An sometimes in the morning unless I eat enough I get a stomach ache.
Re: Chantix
Jun 19, 2007
Good for you, Daddymatt!

And quitting is something to be excited about, especially once you realize it isn't so bad -- at least compared with previous attempts for me, anyway. Sounds like it's going to be a bit better for you, too.

I was dreading and quite nervous about my quit date. Like Skimmer said, it's not bad at all. And don't be surprised if you start seeing positive effects from not smoking quickly. Within a week of quitting, my smoker's cough was gone ... gone! 20 years worth of gunk and coughing cleared up in a week.

The first two weeks that I smoked on Chantix, I was awakened at night very easily -- still am a little bit, actually. My smoker's cough is usually what woke me up. The second night into my quit, I was awakened in the night, too, but not by my cough. It was air getting to parts of my lungs that obviously air hadn't been to in a while. Talk about surreal!

At about the five-day-quit point, taste and smells kicked in. I couldn't believe how much smoking masked taste and smell. Things like rain, a freshly-mowed lawn, a candle -- even soap in the shower smelled incredible! On the down side, I also realized my dogs stink, lol. Smoking masks the icky things, too. And taste, holy cow. Everything tastes exquisite. I was a bit nervous about weight gain with quitting in the beginning; had heard and read about metabolism and smoking, increased appetite, hand to mouth fixation, etc. Hogwash! People gain weight when they quit because food tastes so friggin' good!!! It's like eating for the first time.

Just a few things to look forward to within days of putting the smokes down. Hope you're doing okay today. The first 72 hours are the roughest. You can do it!!!
Re: Chantix
Jun 22, 2007
Hi Bevann,
This is only my second quit attempt. Tried cold turkey several years ago and that was unsuccessful.

Yes, I am fortunate that I have had so side effects from the Chantix other than the vivid dreams and mild insommnia which one Tylenol Simply Sleep tablet takes care of easily.

I also have made sure that I eat a full meal and drink lots and lots of bottled water when I take the pill and have experienced no nausea.

Hi Steno,

YES.....four weeks now and counting. Who would have ever thunk it?

I'm sorry you have experienced the side effects. Meds do effect individuals in different ways as I have found so many times personally and with family members. I cannot take any codeine based pain med as it has the same effect as caffeine being injected directly into my veins. It effects my teenage grandson the same way but totally knocks my husband weird is that?

I am now taking 1 mg. (one blue pill) per day and have for the past five days. I take it at lunch and that seems to diminish the insommnia. I have had no increased cravings or side effects from cutting the dosage in half.

It seems that most folks have found their own "little something" that helps get them through the thoughts of smoking. Mine has been sugar free WintOGreen life savers! There is something about the strong pop of flavor that instantly quells the ciggie thoughts and sure beats the heck out of going for the hot fudge sundae!

Keep the strength to find the ways to keep the quit!
Re: Chantix
Jun 23, 2007
I quit 9 weeks ago. It wasn't that hard. I did smoke 4 or 5 cigs during the first week. I was also using lozenges, which I had been for months before. At the end of the first week I just quit. No smoking, no lozenges.

The urges were in the morning and when I got in the car. Smoking was what I did during those moments for over 26 years. I bought gum and keep it in the car now. Every time I get in the car, I reach for gum.

Surprisingly, I don't have a problem when drinking or hanging around smokers. I find it reinforces my desire to stay clean by picking on them, but they know I'm really just joking. I don't get urges anymore and really don't think about it.

As for the Chantix, yes I experienced side effects. I would get the nausea for a little while after taking it. It was bad at first, but got to be only a few minutes later. Far worth it IMHO. I find it best to wake up really early (2-3am-ish), pop the pill and go back to bed. No nausea.

I'm still taking it, just not as often. After the urges went away I started taking the pill every other day. This has stretched my supply out and I'm thinking about cutting the pills in half. To be honest, I don't know what will happen when the stuff is out of my system.

I do know I can smell and breathe again. My hair and fingernails are now growing twice as fast. My skin is looking good and I'm tanning to a really deep bronze. BTW, I have now lost a total of 50 pounds and I'm now down to 15% body fat. Don't believe that quiting smoking will make you fat. Of course, I'm weight training and on low carb too.
Re: Chantix
Jun 25, 2007
I am so glad I finally found you folks!!! I going on 4 months not smoking- since March 13. The doctor still has me on Chantix at 2 a day- he says 6 months is better. I am having some bad side effects, which now that I've found these postings are from the Chantix, despite what the doctor says. I have not smoked since my quit date and I smoked 1-2 packs for33 years. I think Iwillcut own on the dosage. I have had no energy and mood swings for a couple months.I do look forward to the festive dreams each night though.

I am not sure how the doctor is sure these side effecs are not from the drug since I was the first patient he perscribed it to and even told him about Chatix after saw it on CNN.

Oh, well. I've gone through his quitting thing alone for 3 and a half months and I am so glad I found you
Re: Chantix
Jun 28, 2007
Hi All!
Just want to relate my experience with Chantix. I was a 2 pack a day smoker for over 20 years. I had a smokers cough for the last 4 years, and knew I just had to quit. On top of the cost of cigarettes, I spent another $1.25 a day on cough drops. I perform in community theatre as a hobby, and worried about coughing on stage even with the cough drops. My brother told me about Chantix, he had tried 3 or 4 times in the last year or 2 to quit, using the patch, the gum, hypnotherapy, etc. He was amazed how well Chantix worked and how easy it was. He is clean for over 6 months now. I asked my doctor at the VA about it, and she told me that the VA didn't carry it, but that she could write a prescription for it as long as I was prepared to pay for it myself. No problem, I figured it was cheaper than smoking. As much as I wanted to quit, I was thinking I would still have a real struggle. Was I ever wrong.
Halfway through the first week I found myself putting out the cigarette half smoked, or going much longer between smokes without realizing it. Still apprehensive, I smoked my last one Saturday night and went to bed. Got up Sunday morning, went to light up with my coffee, and realized this was my quit date, and said no. I wanted it, but forgot about it in just a minute. I battled the habit thing for a few days, but thats all it was. No CRAVING, none of the NICOTINE CRAVING that had plagued me when I tried to quit before, the physical rush to get out of the airport so you could light up, the digging through the ash tray for butts, none of that.
It has been about 2 months now, I am proud that I quit, my family and friends are so proud of me, my house and car no longer stink, my cough is almost completely gone. I had absolutely no side effects, except for nausea when I forgot to eat first. I have just a few pills left, I am going to take them one a day to taper off, and not refill my prescription. I am a NON-SMOKER! I have told at least 100 people about Chantix, am writing to the VA to encourage them to carry it to help their veterans quit, and have told my pharmacist how great it works. I want everyone to know that it is so much superior to every other quit smoking program there is. I hope this message encourages everyone, if you really want to quit, this will do it for you with a minimum of effort.
Re: Chantix
Jun 29, 2007
Hey everyone! I went to my doctor today to talk about weening off Chantix and the side effects I was experiencing. I am not to happy with him. He told me the side effects, depression, tiredness and aching muscles, could not be from Chantix and wanted to prescribe an anti-depressant. I said no and he told me I shouldn't listen to the people here because NONE of his other patients have had these side effects. He also said you do not have to ween off Chantix, But if I quit after 4 months I probably will start smoking again. Do doctors get kick backs from drug companies?

I am going to ween myself off, not going to start smokng again and not take antidepressants! Wish me luck! Thanks for being there!!! :wave: :bouncing: :bouncing: :wave:
Re: Chantix
Jun 29, 2007
Hi, I am brand new here. day 2 of Chantix--a few side effects so far but a couple havent been mentioned (that i have seen anyway). my heart starts RACING and I itch all over! mainly my head, and ears...legs arms...doesnt appear to be a rash but i am so itchy! and this is only since yesterday. I wonder if anyone else has experienced this?
My quit date is July 4. only 5 days from now...AHHHhhhhh! I can do it if i dont scratch myself to death!
Re: Chantix
Jul 1, 2007
[QUOTE=Robinnonsmoker;3072378]Hi, I am brand new here. day 2 of Chantix--a few side effects so far but a couple havent been mentioned (that i have seen anyway). my heart starts RACING and I itch all over! mainly my head, and ears...legs arms...doesnt appear to be a rash but i am so itchy! and this is only since yesterday. I wonder if anyone else has experienced this?
My quit date is July 4. only 5 days from now...AHHHhhhhh! I can do it if i dont scratch myself to death![/QUOTE]

Hi Robin and Congrats on your quit!

I did have the itching but it was AFTER I quit and it wasn't overly irritating. More like a skin crawling sensation than a mosquito bite itching. It went away after a few days so hope it does for you as well.

Yes you can do this
Re: Chantix
Jul 3, 2007
Hi, Sara :) Good for you for taking steps to stop this nasty addiction and habit. I wish I'd had that kind of sense when I was 18! The pills made me extremely sick, too. The only thing that helped me was splitting my pills in half and taking them four times a day with a meal (not a snack) and a huge glass of water. Even then, I had to take it a little easy for about 15 minutes after taking the pill. I would still do it again, tho, even with the side effects -- which included a few more than just nausea for me.

Robin, I hope you were able to get squared away with the itching/heart racing. I know some have had their physicians write them an rx for something to help them sleep while on the med. Maybe something similar can be done for the itching? The heart racing would definitely freak me out! Keep us posted on what your doctor says.

MommaBryant, how you doing on the cravings now that you're back on the med? I did a very slow wean because I was afraid of what would happen to me if I just stopped Chantix. I haven't had a Chantix in almost two weeks and I'm doing okay. I also did not take it as long as Pfizer recommends.

Bob, how you doin'? I can relate to your wife's comment about wanting her hubby back. DH had a rough month after being quit. Just a bad case of the blues. After his "meltdown" on Chantix, there was no way he was going to see a physician about depression/blues just to get prescribed another pill. Believe it or not, something called Holy Basil has helped him tremendously. I got it at the health food store, and it's a form of basil -- the common kind we in the US eat and grow on windowsills. Holy Basil, tho, is a touch different and hails from India. It took about three to five days to "kick in," but he is so happy he tried it. We were both pretty skeptical, but were willing to try just about anything to get his smile, sense of humor, motivation and energy back up. We both also take a good multi-vitamin.

Where's Matt? Matt, you making it?

I hope everyone is benefiting from their decision to go smoke-free. I don't regret my decision at all. It's been six weeks almost to the minute since I smoked my last smoke (I called them stackers), Tuesday, 5/7, at 10:30 in the morning. The bloat finally went away about a week after I quit the med, I could begin to at least think about wearing clothes I was wearing three months ago, was feeling energized and "good" about exercising every day and then . . . this month's Bon Appetite came out with some exceptional margarita recipes. I don't know what happened to my willpower, but, yes, I am now even making my own calorie-ridden simple syrup for these lovely concoctions (blackberry & thyme is unreal!!!). Hey, at least it's natural and doesn't contain high-fructose corn syrup, right?

Looks like I picked the wrong month to worry about gaining weight?

Keep up the fight, folks!!! It is soooooo worth it :)
Re: Chantix
Jul 15, 2007
:wave: Hi, Japennington, I'm Judy and I'm quitting with Chantix, too. I'm nine days smokefree. I hope it works as well for you as it has for so many people, including me. It really did make it easier to resist the urges and cravings.

I didn't have any problems with side effects as long as I ate before taking it and drank lots of water. And I know everyone is different, but I kept wondering if I should be cutting back more and then one day I smoked a pack and the next day, I only smoked six. It just works that way for some people, so don't worry if it seems like you aren't ready to cut way back. I didn't quit on Day Seven because I didn't feel ready and I know other people who waited, too. I guess when you're ready, you're ready.

Good luck and stop back here often for support! :)
Re: Chantix
Jul 17, 2007
Ariel, it's a TON easier now!!! And, really, the hardest, most gut-wrenching, depressing part of this whole journey were those days I was smoking and on the med. Once I put the smokes down and just let the med do its thing, things got much easier. It really felt good to take the step and see firsthand Chantix seriously work.

I don't think any of us embarked on this journey (expensive and full of side effects) with Chantix to cut back on our smoking, right?

Best of luck!!!
Re: Chantix
Jul 24, 2007
I am on day 14 of taking Chantix. I was a 2 pack a day smoker for 34 years and I really want this to work. I have tried quitting before using the patch,acupuncture ,hypnotisim,support group program....the longest that I have quit is 43 days. I still haven't toatlly quit. I have been smoking about 8 cigs a day. They taste awful and I smoke half of it. The problem is that I am forcing myself to have weird is that?
I have been having alot of side effects from Chantix and I was happy to read that several other people have had the same. I have alot of anxiety, especially when I first wake up, my stomach hurts,my heart hurts and beats really fast and flutters. I am really tired and spacey and confused. I read that someone reduced the dose. I think I may try that. My urges aren't to bad however I do seem to be forcing myself to smoke.
Re: Chantix
Jul 24, 2007
Ariel, you can do this. I have moments when I want them BAD but it always passes. I am thinking more about smoking today than I was yesterday but I know that it will probably be better tomorrow. It is tough but it will pass and it will just keep getting easier and easier. When I get anxious I want to smoke too. I'm thankful that the chantix kind of keeps me mellow.
tjewell, you'll be at 6 days in no time, and before we know it, we'll be at a month, then two, etc. I think with each day that passes, I'm more resolved not to go back. who wants to do this again over and over? I have tried to quit once before with welbutrin but the side effects were awful and obviously, it didn't work. that was 4 years ago.
You're doing great MPSunshine. Day 1 without cigs is tough but honestly it wasn't as tough as I thought it would be. For me, the Chantix helped a lot. It was scary for me leading up to the big QUIT DAY but then it passed and I'm still alive and so are my loved ones and coworkers. hah!
You can do it sooz58. Good luck and keep us posted.
Re: Chantix
Jul 25, 2007

I found if I 'd take the chantix the same time each day it had less foggyness.
I also cut the pills in half(gp ordered)to many other meds.

But if you only use half a pill at night VS the whole.

Right now chantix is a med thats one size fits all and many of us has had our GP modify it or we had to.I only take a half a pill a day and thats in the morning.I quit the evening dose as I already suffer fatigue and it was causing alot of indigestion.

I have been smoke free for 26 days,so the minor side effects have been worth it.Its finding out what works for you.

Ariel 7,tjewell 23, just take it one day at a time it gets easier each day

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