Personal stories about deciding to take medicine to quit smoking
These stories are based on information gathered from health
professionals and consumers. They may be helpful as you make important health
Dave, age 42: I started smoking when I was in
the military. But it is affecting my health, and I want to quit. I've tried the
patch, gum, and cold-turkey methods to quit, and they didn't work. So I talked
with my doctor about quitting, and he suggested that I try using Chantix. He
also recommended that I have counseling and join a support group. It's been a
little over a month since I started Chantix, and so far it is helping with my
craving to smoke. Talking in counseling is also helpful. I think I finally am
going to be able to quit.
Note: Separate PDQ summaries on Oral Cancer Screening; Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer Treatment; and Cigarette Smoking: Health Risks and How to Quit are also available.
Who is at Risk?
People who use tobacco in any of the commonly available forms (cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and smokeless tobacco) or have high alcohol intake are at elevated risk of oral cancer; and they are at particularly high risk if they use both tobacco and alcohol. People who chew betel quid (whether mixed with tobacco...
Alanna, age 44: I
thought about taking medicine to quit smoking, but I already take several other
medicines for health problems. I just didn't want to take another prescription
medicine and take the chance that it might cause problems. So I decided to try
the nicotine patch. I set a date and started planning for the physical effects
of quitting, like having munchies around and cleaning my car and house. I
started with the largest patch available. It was great because the withdrawal
symptoms were hardly noticeable. Then I went to the medium patch and finally
the smallest patch. Now I don't smoke anymore.
Carlo, age 52: I started smoking at 15. I always thought I
could quit at any time and had tried to quit dozens of times. But then I'd
start craving a smoke, and I'd go back to cigarettes. A few years ago, my
doctor suggested I try taking Zyban and nicotine gum. It was great, because
between the pills and the gum, the withdrawal symptoms were hardly noticeable.
I was done with the gum after the first few weeks, but I ended up staying on
the pills for 6 months. But using both worked for me, and I haven't smoked for
Kesia, age 35: My friends pushed
me to quit smoking and suggested I talk to my doctor about getting some
medicine to help. But I just wasn't comfortable with the idea of taking
medicine. I have a strong will, and when I put my mind to doing something, I
can usually do it. So I took my doctor's advice to have professional counseling
to help improve my chances of success. I quit smoking-cold turkey-5 months ago.
All my friends are really surprised that I could quit like that. It has been
tough at times fighting the cravings, but it has worked.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
July 22, 2009
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this