6 Important Reminders when Using Prescription Drugs to Quit Smoking

by Dr Antonio Howell, MD

in quit smoking

Dr. Howell

If you are planning to quit smoking today but afraid of experiencing the undesirable side effects associated with the withdrawal period, you may want to consider taking prescription medications. There is plenty of smoking cessation drugs that are able to suppress nicotine craving and alleviate the withdrawal symptoms. But because they are chemically formulated, these drugs do have side effects as well. To lessen the health risk and increase success rate with taking these medications, here are important guidelines to remember.

1.  Compare products.

Not all smoking cessation drugs are effective in suppressing nicotine addiction and alleviating the withdrawal symptoms. Take time to compare each drug from the others, with focus on its efficiency, side effects, and cost.

 2.  Look for the prescription medication that doesn’t contain nicotine.

Nicotine is an addictive substance that is contained in cigarettes. It is the reason why many people get highly addictive to tobacco. Traditional smoking cessation treatments make use of nicotine to compensate the reduced nicotine levels in the smoker’s body without having to light a cigarette. But nicotine, just like other chemical compounds contained in tobacco, does have harmful effects to the body as well. So choose the medication that doesn’t have nicotine to ensure your safety. Example is Chantix. This medication works by blocking the nicotine receptors in the brain so the smoker does not experience the pleasure that nicotine brings.

 3.  Check the warning.

As mentioned, any medication has potential side effects. But when used properly, it is less likely that you will experience the undesirable effects of using them. Just make sure to read the warning labels. They usually indicate who are not allowed to take the drug, what age bracket is the drug made for, possible side effects, etc.


 4.  Read news and articles about the product.

There are a lot of online resources of news, articles and other information about various smoking cessation drugs. You may consider joining forums, or reading personal stories and blogs written by people who have used the drug you are considering to quit smoking. You will learn a lot from these people. You can also read books and health magazines.


 5.  See your doctor.

If you have other health issues, or you are currently undergoing treatment, it is best to see your doctor for medical advice. Not all smoking cessation drug can be taken safely with other medications. You can get firsthand information from a professional smoking cessation therapist so don’t hesitate to ask questions.

 6.  Decide if you are going to use other forms of treatment.

You can also consider other smoking cessation strategies while taking the medication. For instance, you can undergo counseling or psychotherapy so you can cope with the withdrawal symptoms easier.

Quitting smoking should not be a difficult process. With guidance from a qualified health specialist and by choosing the most suitable medication, you can say goodbye to smoking for good and face a healthier, longer ad happier life.



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