Types of Drugs To Help You Quit Smoking

There are currently two FDA approved quit smoking drugs, Bupropion and Varenicline. The newer of the two, Varenicline has shown in clinical tests to be more effective than Bupropion. These quit smoking drugs are distributed by major pharmaceutical companies and are only available by prescription; there may be generic forms of either available, depending on state and pharmacy.

Bupropion Or Varenicline

Bupropionís main function is to serve as an anti-depressant. However, one noticeable side effect was counteracting the nicotine addiction in smokers who were prescribed the drug. Researchers have been looking into other uses of Bupropion to aid those who want to stop smoking. One possible benefit that some have noticed about this quit smoking drug is how quickly their body adjusts, furthering aiding in lessening the severity of withdrawal symptoms. When prescribing Bupropion, doctors will often suggest that their patients quit taking the medication if they are unable to quit smoking after the initial seven week period.

The Varenicline is the first drug approved by the FDA that was specifically designed to help people with nicotine addictions. This quit smoking drug works in two ways; it blocks the receptors in the brain that process the nicotine, and then mimics the same pattern and feeling of nicotine to the brain. In other words, you are getting less nicotine in your system than what your brain realizes. In laboratory testing, patients were put on twelve and twenty-four week courses to judge the speed of the quit smoking drug in ridding the body of the addiction.

In other tests, Varenicline has been shown to be more effective than using the Bupropion alone or a placebo, and without reducing the anti-depressant benefits of the Bupropion. All subjects of the trial were proven twice as likely to remain cigarette free by using Varenicline rather than a placebo. There was also evidence that subjects were more likely to be successful combining the two quit smoking drugs than by using Bupropion alone.

Beginning The Medication

Both of these medications to stop smoking are by prescription only, as with any medication or treatment a doctor should be consulted to discuss any risks that could be a factor for an individual. Either drug once prescribed by a doctor is often put to a quit smoking plan. First get the prescription filled, and then pick a date to quit; get rid of all cigarettes on that date and continue medication for 12 weeks. Depending on which quit smoking drug the doctor subscribes, a patient may continue to take the drug for up to 12 additional weeks.

Related Information and Products

Smokefree.gov is an initiative from the National Cancer Institute to help you or someone you care about quit smoking.
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CDC's Office on Smoking and Health offers links to the Tips ¬ģ Campaign, benefits of quitting, quitting resources, and cessation materials for state tobacco control programs.