Medication

There are several approved medications that can help you quit smoking. The over the counter medications include the nicotine replacement therapies (NRT). There are four types approved in Canada:

  • Patch
  • Gum
  • Lozenge
  • inhaler

There are also two approved prescription medications

  • Bupropion or Zyban
  • Varenicline or Champix

Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) comes in the form of the patch, gum or lozenges and provides the body with nicotine to help minimize withdrawal symptoms and cravings when you don’t use tobacco. It eliminates the toxic substances that a smoker would be getting from cigarettes. NRT has been shown to almost double quit rates. It is most effective when combined with behavioural counseling. NRT can also be used to help “reduce” smoking.

Bupropian / Zyban
Bupropion is an antidepressant that has also been shown to double the chances of quitting smoking, and has also been shown to minimize weight gain associated with quitting smoking. However, there are some contraindications to using this medication so you should speak with your LGBT friendly health care professional to see if this is appropriate for you and for a list of the potential side effects. It is now covered under the Ontario Drug Benefits program for eligible participants

Varenicline/Champix
Varenicline/Champix is an oral medication which helps to reduce withdrawal and cravings from tobacco by helping to prevent the pleasurable effects of smoking. This has also more than doubled quit rates for some smokers. There are some side effects when using this medication so you should speak with your LGBT friendly health care professional for more information. This medication is now covered under the Ontario Drug Benefits program for eligible participants