Day 22...so on week 4..yay

Hi there all

I have been a smoker since I was 16, now 39.

I have been wanting to quit for yrs but deep down inside I enjoyed it.

People (mainly family) used to nag me but basically I wasn't going to quit until I was ready.

I have tried everything bar acupucture. I have tried patches, hypnosis, Zyban, inhalator, gum, will power (yer right). At the moment I am on Champix. I did quit for 8 months once but then got drunk and had one, yes one Silkcut ciggie and got hooked again.

I tried Champix at Easter but I was silly and went away for the weekend and forgot to take the pills with me and hence I started again.

I can honestly say not though that I am 22 days smoke free without a single hiccup.

Although...... my mental state is definately having hiccups.

I had a massive panic attack about dying one night and couldn't face work the next day as constantly felt sick and heartburn. The thought in my head subsided for a bit but then came back a month later. Bearing this in mind and that docs once said I was going through the slow change I thought it was my hormones playing silly bu**ers as I have also put on weight around my middle and have dry skin.

After that I went back to the docs and asked to start Champix again. I did take it for 14 days before I got to the stage to stop and for one of those weeks I was away in Ibiza with my family (I was the only smoker). I did make a point of not bringing back any duty free cigs or baccy.

On 30th September in the afternoon I had my last ciggie.

My panic/anxiety attacks remained though.

I went to the docs and she prescribed me beta blockers for the palpitations and a stomach protector for the heartburn/indegestion.

I did mention about Champix and she asked if I was at the point of comingoff them yet. Heck no! I WANT to do it this time I NEED to do it, although I understand that Champix can mess with your head and I have had depression before.

I do also wonder if its the fact that I am 40 in February that caused me to want to stop smoking and have a panic attack. Maybe subconciously it is worrying me about being the big 4-0.

has anyone else had this?

22 Replies

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  • Wow - Well done you!

    Its a difficult decision to make and your 4 weeks into it already!!! Thats great going...!!!

    Afraid i cant comment on the Champix though as i've not had them.

    Keep on winning!

    xxxx

  • Well done on entering your 4th week. I haven't had champix but if you do a search you will come up with loads of posts.

    I had anxiety and panic attacks for a couple of weeks. I used rescue remedy drops, lavender and relaxation apps.

    Most of quitting smoking is psychological and who can tell what is going on in your subconscious. I wish I knew what was going on in mine. I dreaded the big 40 but if you stay a non smoker you'll have all the more birthdays to celebrate. That will be a great present to yourself.:D

    I wish I had stopped at 40 because I'm now 69 and smoked for 50 years.

  • Hi

    I have bin given beta blockers today from my GP for my anxiety. Do they work as iv had mine since the start of my quit 6 month 2 day.

  • Springer girl

    Well done, you are doing absolutely great, 3 weeks. I know nothing about Champix, but as Una says there's lots of posts on the forum about it.

    All I can say is please make this a successful quit , do it for your 40th, you won't regret it. I wish I'd done it at that age (in fact that was probably one of my zillion failed attempts). 10 years down the line and this IS my one!! I feel totally different this time, just so focused, and feeling good!

    Fi x

  • I used Champix and had some side effects like nausea and weird dreams but all in all I thought they were brill. You keep going and do it now because the longer you leave it the more damage is done you will really benefit if you stop now, I wish I had:)

  • Hay springer,

    Well done for getting this far, keep gonig you are doing great

  • HI, thank for the replies

    I am just in a black place at the moment and just can't see straight.

    Got other medical problems tloo and they are all coming to the forefront now.

    Being tested for Thyroid tomorrow as I have all the symptoms and my sis has thyroid prob too. Fingers crossed.

    Hi Shelley, yes they did help a bit, I was given propranaolol. They did stop the flutters but not a great deal. Doc gave me 2 three times a day but thats a low dose apparently.

    24 days smoke free though! yay

  • Hi Springer

    I'm stopping using Champix, and have been taking them for nearly 5 weeks.

    First things first. Champix has very serious side effects for a small number of people, so if there are any doubts about it then speak your doctor. That said, you say you have already spoken to your doctor - provided she is happy then there is no medical reason to stop.

    That leaves you with what you are actually experiencing.......

    I feel that Champix is affecting me mentally in subtle ways which are quite difficult to pin down. Some of these effects are as follows: I am probably more prone to anxiety than usual. I sometimes feel there is a plastic bucket in my head! I occasionally feel a slight loss of balance when walking, like by body weight isn't quite in the right place. There is a feint feeling of an artificial mental state superimposed on my usual state of mind.

    Although these sound pretty weird, they are in fact hardly noticeable for most of the time.

    All things being equal I would rather not be using Champix. However, all things aren't equal! Having tried to quit with other methods, I am finding that this time I feel really confident of success. Whether this is down to Champix or not I don't know. It is certainly helping a lot.

    Another aspect in all of this is that cutting out nicotine makes you feel pretty weird anyway! Look on other posts at some of the experiences that people quitting using NRT have had - they look pretty similar to some of the Champix side effects!

    As I expect you know, Champix partially blocks the nicotine receptors in your brain. It's job is to mess with your brain! I guess it's hardly surprising that there are mental side effects!

    If in doubt, have another word with your doctor. If she is still not concerned about you taking Champix, then that will be reassuring, and will help with the general anxiety.

    Your doing really well. It's worth sticking at it.

    Biggrin

  • well, day 30 and still not smoking.

    I went down to 1 champix a day for a few days but started to feel jittery and was worried about having a relapse so went back to 2 tablets.

    Anxiety still the same. Feels like there is a constant cloud over me.

    Did anyone else experience shortness of breath after quitting.

    I 'think' I can breath deeper now but still get short of breath. I no longer rattle or cough when I am out of breath though.

    Almost seems like I have a habit of taking deep breaths for so long (dragging on cig) and I seem to miss it. I do yawn more too.

  • I know that "deep breath" feeling, and I miss it too.

    If you have this, and/or any feelings of anxiety, take a deep breath, hold it, then exhale very slowly through almost closed lips (i.e. which cause a restriction). It works brilliantly, and even gives that slight headrush that used to come with a much needed cigarette. :-)

  • I know that "deep breath" feeling, and I miss it too. And yes, I've had the anxiety and shortness of breath too. Both are quite common.

    If you have this, and/or any feelings of anxiety, take a deep breath, hold it, then exhale very slowly through almost closed lips (i.e. which cause a restriction). It works brilliantly, and even gives that slight headrush that used to come with a much needed cigarette. :-)

    I am finding now (just starting week 4) that being out of breath isn't actually an upleasant experience any more. I got on the x-trainer at the gym earlier this week and did 25 minutes on a variety programme. I could do this as a smoker, but my chest would feel tight, and I'd have a constant niggling "phlegm" tickle at the back of my throat. This time, I was sweating and tired, but could breathe cleanly and deeply without any feeling of restriction or obstruction. I also recovered a lot quicker.

  • Well still haven't had a ciggie since 8pm on 30th September 2012.

    It seems ages ago but not really when I count the days.

    Decided to come off Champix as it was causing havoc with my depression and was having manic and paranoid thoughts that I had the dreaded C.

    Still feel a bit out of breath but its odd, I get out of breath but recover quicker and seem to be able to take deeper breaths (although I am not sure as my ribs are fused because of Ankylosing Spondilitis). I no longer rattle when I breath in deep either.

    I haven't had the bad cough that people talk about but I do get a niggly bit of dark phlem at the top of my throat each morning, but when I cough there is nothing there to get rid of. Does anyone else have this?

  • Big Breaths

    Hi springer. There is a particular exercise for people experiencing anxiety as they stop smoking- the anxiety may be part of the withdrawal rather than a side effect of champix. Any way the exercise is to smoke an imaginary cigarette, about 10 deep draws with similar gaps between. This feels good, and it may well be that some of the buzz we miss is from slow deep breathing which is recognised as a very effective relaxation aid. Try googling meditation or deep breathing. I hope this helps.

  • well done

    wow, you have done so well well to battle through what sounds like a really dark time...

    I hope you're other health problems are not too serious!!

  • Well still haven't had a ciggie since 8pm on 30th September

    Way to to Springer. Well done:)

    Fi x

  • Well its now 52 days without ciggies.

    I feel proud that I have gotten this far without a relapse.

    I went to darts last night and actually had a drink (well 7 whiskey and cokes) and I didnt ask anyone for a cig.

    I am still having slight anxiety worries but no more panic attacks.

    Seeing doc on 5th dec for my depression so will speak to him about shoulder and back hurting and try and pluck up courage to ask for chest xray. I am one of these people that if I ignore it then it doesnt exist but at the mo i am so worried that i have done damage to myself from smoking that i think this is where the anxiety is coming from.

  • If your doc offers you anti depressants then think about it a lot before you take them. I was stupid enough to take them and it caused so many more problems. It was the worst 9 weeks I ever went through. I think the depression would have passed on its own and that it was just another symptom of quitting. I don't think it was full blown depression but what do I know. I seem to be back on track and haven't had any anxiety for the last 2 days. I'm finding the better I feel, the more I want to smoke. I won't :D

  • 52 days, no cigs and 7 whiskey and cokes, well done springergirl (I think your name is great!) :D

  • Thanks everyone.

    Still no cigs....feels like forever since I quit but its been 2 months, 5 days.

    Anxiety still the same so seeing doc on Friday. I have had depression before so I know I need help and pills are the only option for me.

    Does anyone else get bleeding gums since quitting? What about bad breath too? O/H said about breath other day lol, but I suppose its best for him to say it than others.

    Off out round the town in a week so this will be my biggest test. O/H fair play has quit smoking too, he is on patches and is going down to the 2nd stage soon after being on 1st stage longer than normal as he wants to make sure the habit has gone.

    Biggrin you name is cool too :)

  • Thanks everyone.

    Still no cigs....feels like forever since I quit but its been 2 months, 5 days.

    Anxiety still the same so seeing doc on Friday. I have had depression before so I know I need help and pills are the only option for me.

    Does anyone else get bleeding gums since quitting? What about bad breath too? O/H said about breath other day lol, but I suppose its best for him to say it than others.

    Off out round the town in a week so this will be my biggest test. O/H fair play has quit smoking too, he is on patches and is going down to the 2nd stage soon after being on 1st stage longer than normal as he wants to make sure the habit has gone.

    Biggrin you name is cool too :)

    Hey Springer,

    I haven't been so bad with depression lately although I do suffer from it. I have found keeping busy to be the best thing for that.

    Bad breath - We spend years smoking and all the gunk sticks to our teeth. A lot of toothpaste and mouthwash can mask the smell and the stains but they are still there. Part of the problem is that the staining happens under the gum line as well. This can also help contribute to gum disease which would cause bleeding gums. I would suggest a good scale and polish from the dentist. I have had one done and have also had a tooth removed (due to smoking I may add) and even I can tell the difference in my mouth. It feels so fresh when I brush now and I don't get the horrible metalic taste that I always would have got. And the really good news is that a scale and polish, combined with a one month course of Corsodyl mouthwash will ensure that the gum disease is gone. The quicker you do it the better. I have suffered for years with my mouth and this tooth is my third.

    Well done on staying smoke free for so long. Hope you start to feel better soon. Stay positive and everything else will work itself out.

  • Springer

    You are doing so well, and will most certainly be celebrating your 40th as a non smoker:) Well done:)

    Fi x

  • Springer you are coping amazingly well, I think the rush of emotions (good and bad) are because we've had a cig to celebrate and comiserate for so long that we've forgotten how to react, and in addition to this i felt as if i was losing my crutch (i now think of cigs as my frenemy helps me not miss them so much)

    to bolster my quit there is a free nhs app - smoke free, it tells you how much cash (to the penny) that you have saved and how long your quit is to the second.

    Hope the doc can help you sort through your anxiety xx

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