Considering Chantix. Anyone have experience with it?

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Posted 2/1/2013 by Laurel Jean in NSBR Board

Laurel Jean
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PeaNut 76,877
March 2003
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Loc: Michigan

Posted: 2/1/2013 8:33:55 PM
Yeah, I'm a smoker. What's worse, I had quit for 15 years and started again.

My physician wrote me a perscription for Chantix, but I have concerns. I am on Paxil for depression, and have been pretty stable. But still, I worry about side effects: worsening depression, etc.

She assures me that as long as my depression is under control, I should be ok.

Any advice?



PeaNut 486,210
October 2010
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Loc: SE Michigan

Posted: 2/1/2013 8:39:44 PM
I know several people who have successfully quit using Chantix. While I don't know if any of them had preexisting depression, they all seemed to have normal mental states during and after using Chantix. Do you have somebody you can rely on to note mood changes? If so, I'd go ahead and start taking it.

Good luck!


"You're confusing a war on religion with not getting what you want." --Jon Stewart


PeaNut 434,842
August 2009
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Posted: 2/1/2013 8:50:25 PM
My DH quit smoking a couple years ago or so, using it. He had been smoking for ages and had tried quitting dozens of times over the years, and tried all sorts of methods. Nothing worked, until the Chantix. He took it for only about a month, and then was done smoking forever.


PeaNut 3,030
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Posted: 2/1/2013 8:56:31 PM
Yeah, I am too. I'll tell you my experience and you take from it what you will.

I used it about 3 or 4 years ago. It worked like a charm. Within a couple of days of starting I had absolutely NO desire for a cigarette. NONE. I TRIED to smoke a couple of times because I became very irregular when I quit (sorry, TMI) but it made me nauseus and tasted awful when I did. Maybe 2 weeks into my first month the dreams started. Not always bad, but very very vivid and bright and colorful and I still remember them all to this day - I usually 'lose' my dreams shortly after waking.
Then the sleepwalking started and the dreams became much worse. I quit the Chanitx cold turkey the night I woke up in my daughters bed with no recollection of getting there. I was having a dream about a CABBAGE PATCH kid that was plotting to kill my entire one would listen to me in the dream and thought I was crazy and they were going to commit me. I finally caught that sucker in my dream and I was choking him when I woke up in my daughter's bed to her crying out and swatting at me to stop! I had wrapped my hands around her upper arm in a choking way and was squeezing so hard it woke her up and made her cry - she was 9 or 10 at the time and terrified because I was looking at her with a crazy face, but I was completley unaware of what I was doing. I was done after that. I can't begin to imagine if I had had my hands around her neck. It was terribly scary.

I also broke a tooth from grinding my teeth from the dreams a couple of nights before that incident. I also woke up thirsty one night, went to the bathroom for some water, turned the faucet on and then picked up the bottle of scope next to the sink and started sucking it back like a cold beer. Sleep walked several times...

My dad and his girlfriend took it at the same time I did - had the same success, then the same kind of crazy sleep patterns, awful dreams and sleep walking that I had. They quit within days of me. Now, I also know 2 other people who took it with no side effects whatsoever and are still nonsmokers 5-6 years later.

The stuff really, really works but the side effects were a killer for me. It's just not for everyone, but you don't know that it's not for you until you try it's a Catch 22. Oh, and within a day of stopping the Chantix my nicotine fits came on like crazy. I had NO urges before, but as soon as that stuff was out of my system my brain/body went into overdrive for a smoke.

Best of luck - it is SO SO hard to do.



PeaNut 185,436
January 2005
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Posted: 2/1/2013 9:03:29 PM
I have been smoke free for almost 6 years and used Chantix to quit. I had vivid dreams, but nothing bad. Other than that I had no side effects , I'm a believer! I had smoked for 35 years and I can honestly say, I feel better and more energetic than I did when I was in my 30's


PeaNut 250,729
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Posted: 2/1/2013 9:13:24 PM
My husband used it to quit and has been smoke free for 3 years. Me, it gave me horrible nightmares. The ones that you cannot forget. I had to stop taking it. Just too much.

You know what grinds my gears?

PeaNut 242,768
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Posted: 2/1/2013 9:16:37 PM
my mom, who smoked for more than FORTY YEARS, used Chantix to quit. she didn't have any problems whatsoever and is still smoke free 3 years after quitting.


PeaNut 438,080
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Posted: 2/1/2013 9:20:22 PM
I've been taking a half dose for about 3-4 weeks - mostly because it upsets my stomach. My dreams are memorable, but not upsetting. No depression or anything like that.

My doctor won't prescribe it for anyone with depression and I think I've heard it's not supposed to be taken with SSRIs or MAOIs, but I don't know the details. It was difficult to find a doctor that really knew much about it. (ETA I think you can call Pfizer with questions about compatibility etc.)

Anyway, it works likes a Swiss watch for smoking cessation; I pay close attention to my moods and sleep on it. Will be glad when I can stop taking it altogether.

Good luck!

Stacy in UT

PeaNut 7,959
November 2000
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Posted: 2/1/2013 9:23:23 PM
My mom took it and quit successfully. She also had depression while using it, but she said she actually felt great on it. The doctor just told my dad to keep an eye on her while she was using it.

Jeepers PEApers

PeaNut 10,973
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Posted: 2/1/2013 10:22:56 PM
I used it several years ago. It did a great job curbing the cravings but it bothered my stomach sooooo badly I had to stop using it. I tried it again later that year and had the same problem.
I actually enjoyed the vivid dreams I had! So detailed and clear. That was kind of cool. I only had one bad dream, the rest were awesome.
If you don't have a touchy stomach, it might be a good solution for you!
Good luck!


PeaNut 305,605
March 2007
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Posted: 2/1/2013 10:29:39 PM
Check out quit

Tons of good advice, smart people, quit tools.

I will be smoke free for 3 years in April, after smoking over a pack a day for 10 years. No matter which tool you choose, quitting will be the best side effect!

Chantix is wonderful for some people. Horrible for others. But no matter what, you have to have a PLAN for what you will do after Chantix. After Wellbutrin. After the support groups. Because nobody does those things forever. And the cravings will come back LONG after those supports are gone.

Make a plan now, before you choose your tool. Take an inventory of WHEN you smoke, with WHOM you smoke, how OFTEN you smoke, what happens BEFORE and AFTER you much MONEY you smoke, what you will do with that money AFTER you quit...and make plans around those things. Have a friend on speed dial that you can call when cravings hit. Read up on the physical effects of cravings and be ready to deal with them (they are easier than you think when you approach them as the 3-minute demons that they really are)! Sample lots of gum, hard candies, cough drops, juices, healthy snakcs...get your arsenal ready! Buy some Play-Doh and straws. Get some rubber bands to fidget with. Clean your car, your jacket, your purse. Decide right now that your life will look, feel, SMELL different from this moment forward. Have a PLAN!

No medication in the world will make you quit if you don't have a plan, a support system, a goal, an objective. And no cigarette in the world is stronger than you are!

Take it one (smoke free) second at a time.

In case you can't tell, this is a topic that I am beyond passionate about. I would love nothing more than to see another person quit. Please peamail me ANY question, concern, crazy thought, insane rambling.....ANYTHING! You can do this!

I am not the Pea you are looking for

PeaNut 434,276
August 2009
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Posted: 2/1/2013 11:37:56 PM
I have tried every way to quit except Chantix. My doc didn't want to prescribe it to me because I have Lupus.

I have to have jaw surgery in August, my doc won't do the surgery unless I am smoke free for a month prior. I am setting this as my goal and I'm slowly cutting back and changing my habits about when and where I smoke.

If I can't do it on my own, I'm going to go back to the doc and have him reevaluate me for the Chantix. I know several people who have done it and successfully quit without too many side effects.

Good luck!

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Laurel Jean
generic pea

PeaNut 76,877
March 2003
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Layouts: 179
Loc: Michigan

Posted: 2/2/2013 8:12:31 AM
Thanks for all your replies. I got a little thinking to do.

The quitnet site looks great! I think I'll do some looking around on there.

Thanks again!

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 408,684
January 2009
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Posted: 2/2/2013 9:18:56 AM
Obviously it's different for everyone, but for me personally Chantix was AMAZING. I only took it for 2 weeks, and I'll be 6 years without smoking in March. It was a bad habit I picked up in college, and I was embarrassed that I did it, and wanted to quit. That's probably the biggest key - I wanted to quit.

I am a person that doesn't hardly every remember my dreams, and I did have VERY vivid dreams when I was taking it. So vivid that I can recall them right this second. But mine were not scary. It was weird stuff like me trying out for American Idol, but the stage was my high school's theater. And there was one in my college gym, but a rabid raccoon was loose. I can remember it down to what people were wearing. So strange! I didn't have any other side effects.

And honestly, I didn't even need this:

No medication in the world will make you quit if you don't have a plan, a support system, a goal, an objective. And no cigarette in the world is stronger than you are!

I didn't have a plan, other than that I did avoid my back porch for a few months. I didn't really tell anybody. My 'goal' was to quit, period. I didn't have to have hard candies, or suckers or anything else. Chantix blocks the nicotine receptors in your brain, making you not want to smoke. It also (at least for me) made me very sensitive to the smell, to where when other people are doing it, I cannot stand the smell - almost to the point of being nauseous. I've never had the desire to smoke since then. Not even once.


Had to delete my old account, but I've been here since July 2006!


PeaNut 439,705
September 2009
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Loc: DFW, TX

Posted: 2/2/2013 9:24:37 AM
No advice from me...just wanted to wish you the best in stopping this habit!


PeaNut 555,199
May 2012
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Loc: Michigan

Posted: 2/2/2013 10:34:10 AM
My husband used it a couple times and is now an ex-smoker. He suggests the pills for all his smoking pals as an easier way to help quit. He did well taking it but when it was time for his next pill we could all tell. Carry the pills with you just in case you are out. Good luck and keep trying to quit!

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