It’s well-known that quitting smoking can be a herculean task. In fact, a very small amount of people who try to quit smoking actually achieve their goal permanently. A physical and psychological dependency on cigarettes is difficult to overcome.

Many smokers seek the help of support groups and nicotine gums or patches to quit their habit. Others use medication to aid with quitting.

Chantix is one of the most popular smoking cessation medications on the market. The health benefits of quitting smoking are well-documented and clear. But could the medication bring a whole new host of health problems to its users?

The Evidence

A preliminary research study conducted by the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences posited that users of Chantix are 34 percent more likely to experience a “cardiovascular event” than those who did not take the medication.

The cardiovascular events discussed in the study likely range from minor to severe. This could mean heart attacks, palpitations, or long-term conditions.

This research is important. It implies that users of the medication may not be able to experience the cardiovascular benefits that come from quitting smoking because of the medication’s negative effects.

Yet, this evidence does not imply that continuing to smoke is healthier than taking the medication. Smoking can cause short-term and long-term cardiovascular issues. It can also cause various cancers and other diseases.

There are many other aspects of smoking cessation that you will be able to enjoy regardless of whether you start taking the medication.

Alternatives

Not every smoking cessation medication has faced the testing that Chantix has. Every medication has its own set of negative side effects that all users have to be aware of.

But if have a history of cardiovascular disease in your family and you are a former smoker, talk to your doctor about finding an alternative to this medication. There are likely medications available that do not put you at as much of a risk.

As always, your health is paramount. The medication has been proven to be very effective at helping people quit smoking. But you shouldn’t take it if you have any sort of predisposition to cardiovascular conditions.

Take Chantix at Your Own Risk

The risks of taking the medication are clear, and you should use your own discretion when deciding whether or not to take the medication. Furthermore, any medication you take should be done so with the supervision of your doctor.

But as stated before, the evidence against Chantix is very preliminary, and should be taken with a grain of salt. If you decide against taking the medication, you should still be looking for smoking cessation alternatives that work best for you.

If you’ve decided to take the medication, congratulations! You’re taking positive steps toward leading a healthier life. Furthermore, because secondhand smoke can cause a number of negative health effects, you’re benefitting your family.

For more information on the best methods and medications you can use to quit your smoking habit for good, please read the rest of our blog!