To begin a course of Champix you will need to set a date to stop smoking. You’ll begin to take Champix 1-2 weeks before that date, so it has time to become established before you stop smoking on your chosen date. An initial course of Champix is 12 weeks long.
The initial starting dose of Champix is 0.5 mg once daily for the first three days. On day four you take two 0.5 mg doses once in the morning and once in the evening. From day eight until the end of the treatment o you take one 1mg tablets twice a day.
- Day 1-3 – 0.5mgs once daily
- Day 4-7 – 0.5mgs twice daily
- Day 8 to end of course – 1mg twice daily
If you find yourself unable to quit after this time and are still affected by cravings, you are able to order a repeat pack that contains only 1 mg dosages.
Smokers who have successfully quit after twelve weeks may like the support of an additional twelve-week course. It is possible to take Champix as a ‘backup’ to ensure you do not lapse back into smoking. The urge to smoke again is strongest once you stop using Champix. Quitting Champix before the end of your treatment is not recommended as it raises your risk of starting to smoke again
Smokers who have attempted to quit previously, or those with a heavy smoking habit, may find it beneficial to gradually cut down on smoking whilst they take Champix. Your doctor can advise you on this method as it is important to cut down in the first twelve weeks and stop at the end of the course.
You need to be consistent with Champix. Missed doses can lead to withdrawal cravings. If you miss a dose you can take it within 4-5 hours of the original time, but if you have passed this point, do not take the missed tablet. You need to wait until your evening dose. This is to minimise the risk of side effects.
If you have health considerations you may benefit from a lowered dose of Champix, you doctor will advise during your consultation.
If you experience side effects you may benefit from a lowered dose of 0.5mg twice a day for the course duration.
Patients with moderate renal impairment experiencing side effect take a reduced dose of 1mg daily. For those with severe renal impairment, the dose is 0.5 once daily for three days raising to 1 mg daily if necessary.
- Elderly with renal impairment may benefit from a reduced dose
- Champix is not recommended for under 18s
Champix is for oral use and the tablets should be swallowed whole with water. Do not break or chew the tablets. If you have difficulty swallowing pills you can take Champix with food.
The Champix dosage will be prescribed according to your health, age, response and current medications you are taking. This is why Champix is a prescription medicine. Always follow your doctor’s advice and contact a medical professional if you have any questions or experience unwanted side effects.