Feel so ill, is this just me?

Hi, im now 23 days without a cigarette. Im on champix and already cut the dose in half as i presumed that was what was causing me to feel so ill. But no joy, still feel terrible. I do suffer with fibromyalgia but have been pretty well for months. Now ive got all my old symptoms back. Im exhausted, feel anxious and low, and it just makes me feel like smoking. I know its irrational, but its hard enough giving up, but add to that feeling crap and its easy to try and convince yourself to have a cigarette as you might feel better! Has anyone else had this? Louise

14 Replies

  • Bless you Louise, I'm so sorry you're feeling terrible. BUT you're doing an AMAZING job three weeks!! That's great, well done :)

    I don't know if this is a side effect from the champix - I've never used it, but others have...can't remember who now, but I'm sure they'll be along sometime to offer some advice if they can!

    Someone (again I can't remember who) was saying the other day about how it's easy to blame everything on smoking/not smoking whilst quitting. It's a horrible trick the nicotine monster plays on us to try and make us smoke again. Be strong, remember how much you want to quit, how you're doing exactly the right thing in not smoking, and you're winning. If you've got underlying issues like fibromyalgia (much sympathy, btw) it might be an idea to talk to your doc and see if there's any advice to be had there?

    Good luck, and I'm sorry I can't be more helpful.

  • Thanks for the replies. I know smoking is not a cure for fibromyalgia, ive had it for 5 years and smoked. What i am trying to establish is if the symptoms i am experiencing are common with others who have taken champix, or if the champix is causing a flare up of my fm or if this is just normal nicotine withdrawal. It scares me if im heading for a massive flare up and need to be thinking positively about giving up and not worrying about getting sick. I gave up about 3 years ago for 14 weeks using champix and was so fed up with feeling ill i started again, stupid i know. But our minds rationalise things in a crazy way to justify that cigarette!

  • Thanks Karri, will goggle it. I'm back to the stop smoking clinic on Tuesday so will mention it. She's a bit rubbish to be honest, it's a bit like go in, get the prescription then done. I've mentioned to her before about how in feeling and she just days oh I've not heard of people mentioning them side effects before! Thanks for advice, I'm struggling today not to cave in.

  • I felt quite anxious and depressed early in my quit, I don't take Champix but I think a lot of quitters feel this way for a while, for me it was almost like being in mourning, but that's all passed now thank goodness. Please don't cave in your doing so well

  • Apologies if I'm missing this here, Louise but what are your symptoms? Is it the anxiety and low spirit, are are they symptoms as a result of the symptoms, which are either fybromyalgia or withdrawal from smoking?

    I took champix, and my feeling low, very low, did occur about a week to ten days in, but was fleeting and had gone within a couple days. I did get nausea and vomiting on occasion but could solve that by taking the champix with food, literally, a fork/bite of food, pop the tablet in my mouth and swallow with the food. No nausea at all.

    Not smoking makes me sleep more, for longer, and sometimes I felt like not getting up If I wasn't going to have a cigarette. That has gone a good while ago (I'm now at 15 weeks in). HOWEVER.........I started taking an antidepressant before I quit and was well-established on that before my quit date. Some quitters, and I'm thinking it is most likely those who are susceptible to depression anyway, do get significant depression on stopping, start smoking again as a result, and feel initially very disappointed with themselves for that.....................and there's the start of another vicious circle. Yoiu can take an antidepressant as well as champix (mine is venlafaxine 75mg twice a day, which is actually too strong for me as I can sleep 10-12 hours a day so I've reduced against my GP's advice; I didn't have time to do anything and was getting into work later and later.

    So, as others say, do go to your GP, hang on to your quit and see if an antidepressant can help - tw0-three weeks before it kicks in).

    A note on the smoking cessation advisors. I have seen two or three now of the last two-three years and they were nice but generally useless, and as you say just there to give out the prescription. This forum is far more useful. I also went to what is known in my Health Service, a higher tier smoking cessation intervention, namely a group that ran for five fortnightly sessions. It helped a great deal, but mainly through the commitment I made and the other attendees, plus one of the 'therapists' was very good. The lead psychologist either had a pretty bad depression or was not interested at all.

    Sorry, I've gone on. I wish you well. Champix can help, at least it has helped me, but it is not a magic wand, as they say. I wish you well and hope you stick with not smoking.

  • Thanks walkabout. Its hard to say if the symptoms are from champix, nicotine withdrawal or fibromyalgia. Today i woke and felt massively fatigued but also muscle pain (the fibro), that causes me anxiety because when i last had a flare up i was bad for 3 months. So spent most of today feeling anxious, which also makes me feel crap. I think what worries me is when i gave up 3 or 4 yrs ago using champix thats when all my symptoms of fibro started, so just worried its making it worse. Its hard enough giving up but when you feel so ill it makes it so much harder to stay strong.

  • Yes, absolutely can understand that, and don't know what to suggest. Only that somehow, what you are doing now, stopping the smoking is the best path.

  • So update on the champix. Had 3 days of anxiety and panic attacks so have stopped them completely. Been feeling so awful and all ive wanted to do is smoke. After 29 days ive caved in today a lit one up. Have to say it was disgusting, and i put it out and chucked it away. Feel so disappointed in myself. Everything got too much, ive read how people talk about how they feel with giving up and its true you feel sad and in mourning, like something is missing. But onwards and upwards, tomorrow is a new day!

  • Oh Louise we all have such a hard time giving up but after 1 blip you can still do this, get right back in the program and soldier on :0)

  • How are you doing Louise?

  • Well today has been so much better. Woke up and felt anxious but managed to get on top of that ok, and the rest of the day has gone well. No more sparking up, so hopefully was just a temporary blip!

  • Hi Louise...well done for powering on and not giving in to the blip...its very easy for people to give up all together when they stumble a little...good on ya girl!!!...if you are staying off the champix, why not set yourself up as a bit of a research project for yourself, it will not only help you identify what is and is not your FM, but will also help keep you distracted from missing the nasties..you could start a log/diary for say a set 2 weeks and make coded notes of how you feel, what you are doing etc..as if you are looking at yourself from outside yourself..then after 2 weeks you can sit and analyse your log, separating, physical things from emotional, sad from happy, pain etc...it sounds silly i know but it becomes interesting when you make connections and it takes your mind off the challenging task of not smoking ..reward yourself often Louise, it helps keep your brain happy..

    keep us updated on how you are doing......

  • Hi Louise

    I had the same experience on Champix.

    Also round about 20 to 25 days on Champix I felt horrible, tired and sick.

    Stopped totally on day 24 and really started to feel much better up to now.

    You are doing well ....dig in there!!!!!

  • Its most likely the champix. Quitting smoking would touch the FM but concidering FM is a neuropathic problem and Champix works on your neuro chemistry i think its the most likely suspect

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