Home > Methods to Quit Smoking > Chantix Side Effects


This is a new drug to help people quit smoking. What are the side effects? Are there any? How exactly does it work? There are definitely some pros and cons that you need to be aware of before taking it. Some are very serious and cannot be taken lightly. Let's look at some of them.
a photo of chantix pills

How Does Chantix Work?

It is in pill form, and taken orally everyday. However, unlike other methods to quit, there is no nicotine in Chantix. That is what separates it from the rest of the drugs out there. But how exactly does it work?

When you smoke and inhale, your body absorbs nicotine and it goes straight to your brain. There are points in your brain that nicotine attaches to, and they are called receptors. When nicotine attaches to these receptors, it sends another signal to your brain to release dopamine. When dopamine is released, you feel good. So when you smoke, your brain releases dopamine, and you get high or catch a buzz, or at least in the beginning you do.

You like that first cigarette of the day?

All smokers do. That's because their brain hasn't released any dopamine in a while, so that's why the first one of the day is always the best one.

What Chantix Does

It blocks the receptors from absorbing nicotine. If you block the receptors, they never end up sending a signal for your brain to release dopamine. If you aren't releasing any dopamine, then you aren't feeling better after smoking. In a nutshell, you won't see the point of it because you aren't getting anything from it. You aren't getting your fix.

Sounds to good to be true, right?

a photo of pills spilling out onto the table

What Are the Side Effects?

Trust me, there are many. Allergic reactions, rashes, swelling, vomiting, suicidal thoughts, panic, hallucinations, and worst of all...NIGHTMARES!

It already seems like a list no one would want to face.

One of the worst side effects of the patch is having nightmares when you sleep. But to avoid them, you could simply take the patch off before going to bed. Most people forget to do that, though.

However, with this drug, there is no "taking it off before bed." You take it orally everyday, so you are stuck with the drug in your body. And guess what? You are stuck with nightmares. You won't be able to escape them.

Does That Scare You?

It should, because it's real. Imagine waking up in terror and not being able to do anything about it. With the patch, you could just simply rip it off. With Chantix, you can't. Now I admit not everyone taking the drug will experience nightmares, but a good portion will. Do you want to take that chance?

The side effects seem too brutal to me. I don't want to think I'm going to be vomiting and having suicidal thoughts and having nightmares everyday JUST so I can avoid withdrawal. It just doesn't seem worth it to me.

I still believe, even if you take this prescription drug, you're going to have to face the mental withdrawal at some point. There is no way to avoid that.

I don't know how it's going to prevent a heavy smoker from lighting up when they enter a bar full of smokers.

To me, it just doesn't seem to face your triggers of everyday life.

It just makes you not like smoking because you aren't getting anything from it, "the fix." But if you're getting sick from it at the same time, you wouldn't be smoking anyways, so you'll probably just stop taking it. Then you'll go back to smoking because you'll be going through withdrawal. The vicious cycle continues.

So until they come up with a drug that doesn't have the effects as this one, I don't think there is a better way to quit than cold turkey. It's just the fastest and safest way to go.


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