As the only clinically proven prescription medication approved in the UK to help you stop smoking, Champix (varenicline) can help to greatly increase your chances of kicking the habit with a 50% success rate after just one 12-week course of treatment. It contains the active ingredient varenicline which works to block the nicotine receptors in the brain, slowing removing the craving and addiction, helping you to quit for good.
Champix comes in the form of a 12-week course of tablets that are easy to take. You can buy this smoking cessation pack here at HealthExpress after taking our free online consultation. This is first assessed by one of our doctors to ensure you are safe to use it, if approved, you can complete your order and have the pack delivered to you the next day.
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This highly popular smoking cessation treatment is clinically proven to be the most effective prescription medication at helping you stop smoking for good. It is easy to take and has the highest success rate compared to other smoking cessation treatments. In clinical studies, users were twice as likely to give up than with no help at all, making it the most effective quit smoking treatment above nicotine gum and patches, therapy and e-cigarettes.
In fact, the conclusion from NHS testing showed that around 45% of people had already stopped smoking after just 12 weeks of using Champix compared to 22% of those who used bupropion and 11% who were on a placebo.
The pills come in a 0.5mg and 1mg dosage to be taken as directed in our sections below and each contains the active ingredient varenicline, which replicates the effects of nicotine without containing the highly addictive substance itself.
This smoking cessation drug is the only treatment of its kind, working in a couple of unique ways to help you give up smoking for good. Rather than including nicotine without the tobacco, like other methods such as vaping and nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), this smoking cessation treatment uses the active ingredient varenicline instead. This works in a few ways:
Technically speaking, varenicline bonds directly to nicotine receptors in the brain to stop the feelings you get from smoking a cigarette – this means that even if you give in to the temptation, you will not enjoy the habit. These combined effects make giving up smoking much easier.
Although the standard treatment of Champix lasts for at least 12 weeks, you may find out that you actually stop smoking within the first two weeks. However, it is always advised to complete your full course and some people decide to opt for a further 12-week course to further increase their chances of quitting for good from 50% to 70%.
As with other treatments focused on habits and addiction, you must be in the right frame of mind to the start medication. If you are determined to quit, the likelihood of doing so will in turn be increased. This also means that combining Champix with other stop smoking treatments can be beneficial to your cause. For example, you can draw on NHS resources to help you along the way, and even NRT methods such as gums and patches if you're finding it particularly difficult.
As well as the high success rate in comparison to other quitting methods, there are many other advantages that make this particular course of treatment a much better option:
The main benefit of any smoking cessation treatment is obviously to help you ing for good, and in this retrospect, it does just that; it is proven to be the most successful treatment available with the majority of patients quitting smoking with two courses of the tablets, 50% with one – figures that are completely unheard of when researching quit smoking options. Studies have also shown that Champix works better than its closest competitor Zyban (bupropion).
Whilst most smoking cessation treatments include nicotine, both Champix and Zyban don't, however Champix pills are often preferred over Zyban because the success rate is much higher (Zyban is just 23% from initial studies). Zyban (bupropion) was also formulated as an antidepressant before a smoking cessation treatment and relapse figures over a long period of time tend to be higher.
Whilst Champix can help you towards quitting in just 14 days, it is always advised to complete the course of treatment fully. As quitting smoking is important especially for the health benefits it provides, another handy benefit to kicking the habit is the number of free resources that are available to help These include:
This treatment comes in the form of a hard capsule, which is easy to take. As it comes packaged with the correct dosages labelled for each day of the treatment, this makes it easy to know which tablet to take and when. You can take varenicline with or without food, ideally with a full glass of water. In terms of when and how to take the medication, this requires a small level of planning:
You can ask your GP which method will be the best for you, or after filling in our free consultation, our doctors may advise you on the best method.
Champix tablets are clearly labelled as the mg dose and when to take them differs. You start with one pill per day of the 0.5mg dosage before increasing the number and mg down the line. The correct dosage for the number of days means the medication will have maximum effect.
The total length of the treatment is 12 weeks after which you may continue for longer if you wish to further increase your chance of quitting completely.
All prescription medication should be taken for the full course before stopping. All of our medication comes complete with the patient leaflet that should be read fully before starting the treatment. You can see the patient leaflet attached at the bottom of this page.
Medication dosages are clinically monitored and tested before being fully approved in the UK meaning they are as effective as possible whilst posing minimal risk of side effects or to your health. In this case, the dosages are so small as the medication is highly concentrated for optimum effectiveness.
Champix is available in both a 0.5mg and 1mg dose that is issued together, rather than depending on the severity of your condition like most other tablets. One 0.5mg pill is typically taken for the first 3 days before increasing to two per day, then finishing with the higher Champix 1mg dosage near the end of your course. Dosages should be taken at the same time for the medication to be most successful and your pill pack is clearly labelled to help you remember.
As mentioned, if you miss a dosage, you should take the pill as soon as you remember, or miss it out completely if it's too near the time of the next tablet. If you do take too much, immediately contact your doctor, as you may need further medical treatment.
When looking to buy this stop smoking treatment you should be aware of the possible adverse reactions. Side effects can occur when taking prescription medication, however this is not always the case, due to the nature of smoking though, there is a chance of experiencing certain side effects on the road to quitting smoking.
Side effects of Champix that are considered common include:
Other side effects, that require medical attention quickly, include shortness of breath, numbness, chest pain, skin rash, fever, swelling, sudden strong headache, slurred speech or seizure. If any of these occur or you experience symptoms associated with an allergic reaction, then you should also stop using varenicline immediately and contact your doctor.
Champix has been linked to feelings of depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts, however there is very limited knowledge on this front, and the effects only happen with a small minority. If you have any concerns whilst taking Champix, whether this is physical or mental, you can voice your concerns to your GP who can access whether you can continue or advise any alternative.
With the link to mental health, if you suffer from, or have suffered from, mental illness in the past, it is recommended to use with caution. For more information on Champix and mental illness, see our precautions section just below.
When considering a smoking cessation treatment such as Champix, it's important to have the right frame of mind to do so. Similar to weight loss needing to be combined with willpower, if you are not keen on quitting for good, it will not be as effective as it should be.
If you are pregnant, or think you are pregnant, smoking cessation tablets are not advised and will not be offered to you. If you are trying to fall pregnant, it is sensible to quit smoking to avoid the harmful effects for your baby and other options are available to you from the NHS services such as patient support, NRT options and herbal remedies. The same goes with new mothers and breastfeeding as research has shown a possibility of varenicline passing through breast milk.
For alcohol consumption, caution is highly advised and excessive intake is not recommended as the active ingredient, varenicline, can enhance the effects of alcohol. Smoking cessation tablets are not suitable for anyone under the age of 18 years as they have not been proven effective on children.
As mentioned under side effects, there have been occasional claims linked to mental illness including depressive thoughts. Because of this, people with a history of psychological illness, in particular depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, should use with caution.
As with all prescription medication, you should always disclose your current medicines and medical history just in case the tablets will affect any ingredients and induce side effects from your other medications. For varenicline, insulin, warfarin and certain asthma medicines can all negatively affect the medication. For the full list of drug interactions please check our patient leaflet below and mention these in your consultation.
You can order your course of Champix online here at HealthExpress. All prescription medication in the UK requires a consultation before obtaining the treatment and Champix is no different. Luckily, you can fill in yours safely online by clicking below. It will take a couple of minutes, after completing your consultation, our doctors will confirm it is safe for you to use before sending to the pharmacy to dispatch for next day delivery. Don't forget, you can get your package delivered to any accommodation as it completely unmarked.
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