Treatment with Champix helps to make smoking cessation easy and painless for smokers. Its active ingredient, varenicline, works in a manner that dupes the brain into thinking that it has received its dose of nicotine. As a result, the smoker is saved from going through withdrawal symptoms when striving to achieve smoking cessation. Champix achieves this by attaching itself to the nicotine receptors in the brain, thereby preventing nicotine from binding to its receptors in the brain. This means that even if a person does give in to the temptation, he/she will not derive the same pleasure from smoking. This keeps people from going back to smoking, sometimes keeping people smoke free forever.
What is Champix?
Varenicline, the active ingredient in Champix, is an innovative smoking cessation therapy that has been designed to help smokers quit forever, depending on suitability; it was approved by the US FDA in May 2006 as a prescription only smoking cessation drug. As known to all of us, smoking is the leading cause of preventable deaths across the world; every year thousands of people lose their lives due to one of many smoking related conditions such as lung disease, heart ailments and cancer. Though most smokers are aware of the harmful effects of smoking, they find it hard to quit because of the strong addictive effects of nicotine and because of the unpleasant nicotine withdrawal symptoms. However, Champix has many people achieve smoking cessation effectively.
How does Champix work?
Champix varenicline has been designed to offer a smoker respite from smoking using a two-pronged strategy; this medication is known to help people quit smoking for life. Champix helps:
Fight nicotine withdrawal symptoms by mimicking the action of nicotine in the body. It attaches itself to the nicotine receptors in the brain. This action fools the brain into thinking that it has received its dose of nicotine. Champix therefore provides relief from the agonising cravings for nicotine as well as the painful withdrawal symptoms.
Champix varenicline is available in the form of a pill and comes in strengths of 0.5mg and 1mg tablets. Before buying any of these doses, you should check signs for originality. The Champix 0.5mg tablet is film-coated and white in colour. It has ‘Pfizer' printed on one side and ‘CHX 0.5’ on the other. On the other hand, Champix 1mg tablet is also film-coated but light blue in colour with ‘Pfizer’ printed on one side and ‘CHX 1.0’ on the other. The recommended course of Champix treatment lasts for a period of 12 weeks.
Side effects of Champix
As with most other medicines, use of Champix Varenicline may also cause certain side effects. However, most of the Champix side effects are usually mild to moderate and may disappear gradually as your body gets used to the medication. Some of the commonly reported Champix side effects are nausea, headache, difficulty sleeping (insomnia) and abnormal dreams. Some rarely observed side effects reported by people taking Champix Varenicline include a change in taste, vomiting, abdominal pain, flatulence and constipation. Don’t forget to consult your doctor as soon as possible if you experience changes in behaviour, changes in mood, depression or feelings of aggression or agitation.
By John Linney
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