How to use Champix: Common use, Dosage & Side Effects

Commonly referred to as varenicline, this drug belongs to a category of medications known as drug cessation therapies. In cases where nicotine therapy is not successful or appropriate, this is usually the drug of choice. Basically, Champix helps people to stop smoking. It works by blocking the effects of nicotine in the brain, which usually induces you to want to smoke.

Dosage and Direction

Champix dose is recommended for adults only. It is prescribed in combination with relevant education and counseling for the patient.

There are several ways in which the drug can be used.

You can set a date in advance in which you intend to stop smoking; then one week before the quit date, you can start on the drug. At this juncture, recommendation is for you to take 0.5 mg, once a day. This is to be continued for at least 3 days.

You can then top up on the dosage after that, with a recommended dose of 0.5 mg, taken twice a day, for the following 4 days. You gradually increase the dose so as to minimize any serious side effects.

Another possible way for you to begin on the dose is to simply start the taking the medication even before you choose the quit-smoking date. As directed by your doctor, you can start with 0.5mg and increase the Champix dose as per recommendation.

During treatment, you can now pick a possible day to quit smoking. This date should range between 8 to 35 days of medication. On the chosen date, quit smoking.

Precautions

Some of the precautions before and while on Champix dose include:
Informing your doctor of any kind of pre-existing reactions and allergies to Champix and any other medication.
Give detailed medical history to your doctor, especially if you suffer from kidney disease, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression, low and high blood pressure, and mental/mood disorders.
The medication can cause sleepiness and drowsiness, it can also make you to feel dizzy and experience loss of consciousness. There is possible lack of concentration, and effects are worsened if you are drinking alcohol or smoking marijuana.
For your own safety and of others, do not drive or operate machinery or any other tool and equipment that requires your being alert.

Only your doctor should recommend and advice the taking of this drug during pregnancy.

Possible Side Effects

Champix is a safe and effective drug. Most patients do not present serious side effects at all. However, the following are some of the commonly reported sides effects: Nausea and vomiting, Headaches, Dizziness, You may experience trouble sleeping, Unusual increase in gas, You may experience changes in taste

Point to note: If the side effects become intolerable and worsening, inform your doctor as soon as possible.

Drug Interactions

When you stop smoking, there is also a change in the way your body responds and reacts to some drugs. For this reason, doses of some drugs may need to be adjusted when you are finally free from smoking. Such drugs include Insulin, warfarin, and theophylline.
What to keep in mind is that neither should you stop, start, nor change dosage of any medications without approval from your doctor.

Overdose

There are two options during overdose.

If the patient is showing serious symptoms such as having trouble breathing, call 911.

Even if symptoms are not quite serious, call a poison control center as quickly as possible.

Missed Dose

If you have missed a dose, ensure to take your does immediately you remember. However, if the time is near to your next dose, skip and just take the next dose.
Take your next dose at the recommended time. Do not take a double dose to make up for the missed dose.

Storage

Store your Champix medication at room temperature. Keep it away from light and moisture

Sources:

https://www.webmd.com/smoking-cessation/features/quit-smoking-drug-nicotine-patches-gums#1

https://chealth.canoe.com/channel/smoking/quitting-smoking/quitting-smoking-medications

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