I had been a heavy (2-3 pack a day) smoker for about 30 years. I had lost the range of my singing voice but for about 4 notes that I could still sing along with the songs on the radio. Climbing a flight of stairs would leave me panting and gasping for air. My breath was horrible and I hated myself for not having enough willpower to be able to quit smoking when I'm actually a very strong woman in many other ways. Everybody has their Achille's heel, their own greatest weakness, and smoking was mine.
I was facing the prospect of losing my teeth to gum disease if I didn't get oral surgery. And there was no sense getting the oral surgery done if I didn't quit smoking because I couldn't smoke while I still had a week's worth of stitches in my mouth, and I had four separate surgeries that needed to be done. Alright, that was the final shove. I've got hereditary periodontitis, and I've been working since I was 30 to keep these cavity-free teeth in my mouth, and I wasn't about to lose them now. My goal is to keep my teeth until I'm 65, at least. My dentist recommended Chantix to help me quit smoking. My dentist's receptionist, another 30 year smoker like me, recommended Chantix highly because it worked for her. About half a dozen of my co-workers had nothing but praise for Chantix because it worked for them.
So I went to my doctor and got a prescription for Chantix. And I was fortunate in that Chantix was covered by my prescription plan, so I only had to pay $34 for a month's supply. Now there is no pill in the world that can make you quit smoking for you if you don't have the fight and determination in you to finally quit smoking once and for all. To get through the quitting process, I first had to accept that I was a major drug addict when it came to cigarettes, and then fight my own addiction to nicotine from that angle.
I had some unpleasant side effects from using Chantix. Notably, I had more trouble falling asleep, and sometimes had insomnia. If I smoked after having used Chantix for a month, I would get really nauseated and would have about 4 hours worth of incredibly stinky farts. Those farts actually helped to deter me from smoking again because I'm not kidding when I say they were foul. I did have about 3 weeks worth of really weird dreams that often resulted in "night frights". They weren't nightmares, but more like anxiety attacks from nicotine withdrawal that got associated with a dream. During a "night fright" episode, I did have some trouble distinguishing the "real world" facts from the "dream world" fiction.
The "night frights" were especially bad if I had smoked a cigarette while taking Chantix, but the key to stopping all of those unpleasant side effects to taking Chantix is to QUIT SMOKING, because all of those side effects are due to the way Chantix interacts with and blocks the nicotine receptors in your brain. But Chantix certainly took the bite out of quitting smoking for me. And with the aid of some strong peppermints to replace my taste for cigarettes, taking Chantix as prescribed for four months, and some focused determination on my own part, I've been smoke-free for ten months now. And all of my teeth are still in my mouth :-)