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How To Quit Smoking: Prescription Methods

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About 2 in 3 smokers want to ditch the habit but without help, many fail to quit. The main reason so few smokers succeed, even though they want to stop smoking, is because nicotine addiction is strong and difficult to break. This is where prescription medication can help.

There are currently two types of prescriptions for nicotine addiction that you can speak to your doctor about. Let’s take a closer look at them.


Zyban is a prescription drug designed specifically to help people quit smoking. It is usually taken over a period of 7 to 9 weeks, at a low dose for the first 6 days which is gradually increased.

Your doctor will recommend the right dose for you to begin with. The tablet is swallowed whole and is usually combined with motivational support.

You will need to set a target date to quit smoking within 2 weeks of treatment. Symptoms of nicotine withdrawal such as insomnia, agitation and tremors may affect you when you finally quit.

You should be honest about your entire medical history with your doctor at your consultation to quit smoking. Zyban should be prescribed with caution to patients with conditions such as depression, diabetes and heart conditions.

Zyban will not be prescribed to anyone under the age of 18 years of age and it is recommended that you steer clear of alcohol while taking this medication as it may deplete its effectiveness.

Pay attention to how this medicine affects you before you judge whether you drive or operate machinery. You will need to consult your doctor if you are thinking about taking this medicine when pregnant.


Champix is another tablet based prescription method used to reduce nicotine cravings.You will need to set a date with your doctor to stop smoking, beginning your course of treatment a week or two in advance. Champix works by reducing the enjoyment of smoking and works on reducing withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

It is only available to those 18 or over and unlike Zyban, is unavailable to pregnant women.

Champix comes in a pack containing two doses 0.5mg and 1mg. Your doctor will be able to increase your dose after you first take the medicine. It is vital that patients take the right dose on the right day. If you stop taking Champix suddenly, you are much more likely to begin smoking again.

Champix is not suitable for everyone and it will not be prescribed if you experience conditions such as epilepsy, kidney problems, psychiatric problems or cardiovascular problems. You should inform your doctor of your medical history, listing any medications you are on before you begin your course.

Champix may interact with alcohol and it is important to be aware of how the medication is affecting you before attempting to drive or operate machinery.

Remember there are many options available to those willing to quit. What are you waiting for?



Published June 2013

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