Champix rollercoaster...any survivors?

I decided to stop smoking on my 34th Bday. I have wanted to stop for years now but never got around to it. Even bought champix but left it in a drawer until it expired. Why now? Because my life is a mess and I desperately need a win right now. The biggest win would be to STOP smoking. To prove to myself I am not a slave of this herb.

I feared failing so much that I tried every technique…at once: Hypnosis, acupuncture, Tony Robbins, yoga, swimming, stopping weed, eating healthy, the book by Allen Car, and the mother of all nukes, Champix. Everything was synchronized to stop on the last hour of my 34th bday. Well it has been 2 weeks and three days with one slip on the 3rd day. Although I handle the craving pretty well since, I hate the idea of having a drug toy with my brains dopamine, I have moods swings, I am completely constipated, food tastes bad, have some rashes in the mouth and bad taste, go from euphoria, to compulsive negative thinking. After the first week I dropped the suggested dose to half (1mg), it feels somewhat better now and the craving did not rise, and I am thinking of dropping it again after 6 weeks. I joined this site because:

1- I just need to share. Sometimes I feel like crying or something, wish I would, I need to release, like if something had to give and want to know if it is normal.

2- Would like some suggestions regarding reducing prematurely the Champx. Is it ok if I dropped to 1mg after only 17 days? Would it be better to take twice 0.5mg? May I drop to 0.5 after 6 weeks and then stop after about 8-10?

3-Will it be a chock when I stop champix, will I suddenly crave cigarettes again?

ON A LIGHTER NOTE. I now feel that it is possible, Stopping cigarettes has turned my vicious cycle of bad habits into a virtuous cycle of good habits, I stopped weed (initially to avoid the nicotine, but now I just want to stop that too), I have so much more free time, so much more energy (unbelievable energy), I focus better at work and don´t go outside every 30 minutes,I believe I can be who I want to be. I work out instead of smoking and watching every tv serie available. I lost my tummy fat.

But it has only been 2 weeks and I need a drug to stop a drug. Will I make it in the long run without artificial help? Will I be free for real? I never want to go back…yet I know deep down I still miss something from the habit. I don´t want to be an ex-smoker, resisting the desire all my life. I want to be a non smoker again, just like before I started 17 years ago, but this time embracing the freedom.

4 Replies

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  • Hey, Bagy! Well done on getting so far! We're the same age, but it was a health scare that gave me a sudden kick up the backside to get on and quit!

    I am one of many on this forum who are doing very nicely on Champix, and I am also not alone in that I'm not on the full dose.

    I just "stopped" taking the evening tablet on about day 17 or 18 of taking the Champix (I'd been smoke free since day 8 or 9). I was doing fine with not smoking - not many cravings and feeling pretty positive and motivated, but my sleep was awful.

    So, when it became time for my next prescription, I was swapped onto 0.5mg in the morning (I start work very early) and 0.5mg at lunchtime, just to even out the dose through the day a bit.

    So, yes, half-dose can work, but remember that these things are different for everyone, so keep an eye on how you are feeling if you do drop the dosage. I suppose that you can always increase it again, if you need to.

    And we are all here to listen if you are feeling the need to rant/seek support/congratulate yourself! :D

    I don't know about coming off Champix - I have read that some people stay on it for 24 weeks rather than 12. Maybe ask that question in one of the longer-term forums?

  • 1- I just need to share. Sometimes I feel like crying or something, wish I would, I need to release, like if something had to give and want to know if it is normal.

    2- Would like some suggestions regarding reducing prematurely the Champx. Is it ok if I dropped to 1mg after only 17 days? Would it be better to take twice 0.5mg? May I drop to 0.5 after 6 weeks and then stop after about 8-10?

    3-Will it be a chock when I stop champix, will I suddenly crave cigarettes again?

    Hi Bagy

    1- Almost anything is normal at this stage! I only cried once, but felt like doing it many, many times in my first few weeks.

    2- I have dropped to half dose on Champix, and don't feel any different in terms of the smoking, but it has improved the side effects. I still take it twice a day, rather than once to spread it out a bit.

    3 - Everyone I have spoken to about coming to the end of taking the tablets have said that they coped fine - none of them seemed to plummet back into cravings and misery! I haven't got to this point yet, but it has given me more confidence.

    Good luck.

  • champix !!!

    Hi people well done with the progress and keep your chins up. I am on day 17 of champix and am taking the full dose of 2mg, one in the morning and one in the eve. I have been smoke free now for 10 days all was good. However i dont know who i am today apart from a miserable grizzly monster. I have found myself snapping at people and generally feelling very low. At one point i was very tempted to give up on the whole thing. Since taking champix i have had a few issues such as poor sleep, bad wind,nausea. These were expected and havent bothered me too much. Basically all i want to know is will this phase pass on its own or is it time to reduce the dose?

  • Hi Bagy

    I can't comment on the Champix thing as I quit cold turkey 17 days ago, but we sound pretty similar in that 'all or nothing' kind of way.

    It wouldn't work for everybody, but I couldn't 'just' quit smoking. I had to quit drinking (more or less completely), quit coffee, start eating healthy and begin exercising in order to do this. It had to be the whole package for me. That's my personality I guess.

    It does make things tougher, but one thing also helps the other along, and the sense of achievement is much stronger. Can't lose any belly fat though :mad: so would appreciate your tips on that!!

    I am trying to come off anti-depressants as well and, after almost 10 years, have managed to halve my dose in just a couple of weeks with few side effects.

    It CAN be done!!

    This place really helps when you just need a boost or to have a moan about how you're feeling. So come on here often, get some support.

    I don't know if you can simply stop taking Champix, but may be worth discussing with your GP if it is the fact that you're replacing a drug with a drug that is bothering you? Cold turkey was hell initially, but then again I liked the idea that it was another poison out of my system. Might work for you.

    Good luck with your journey anyway. You've made great progress. Be proud :)

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