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Chantix, generically known as Varenicline, is a prescription drug used to help people stop smoking. It is a member of the non-nicotine group of medications known as smoking cessation therapies. It acts on the brain and helps reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms associated with quitting smoking.

Varenicline is successful in helping people quit smoking and reduce nicotine withdrawal symptoms. It works by targeting the same receptors in the brain as nicotine does, making it easier for smokers to quit. Chantix also helps smokers control their cravings for cigarettes and manage other related symptoms that can come from quitting smoking.

Uses and Dosage

Varenicline helps adults 18 years and older quit smoking. It should be taken orally after eating and with a full glass of water.

The recommended dosage for adults is 0.5 mg once daily on days 1 to 3, and then 0.5 mg twice daily on days 4 to 7. After day 8, the dosage should be 1 mg twice daily for 11 weeks. In certain cases, the duration of treatment can be extended up to 6 months, or even longer. It is usually recommended to start taking varenicline one week before the target quit date, but it is also possible to start varenicline at any point before day 8 and then quit smoking between days 8 and 35 of therapy.

Side Effects

Common Side Effects of Varenicline

  • Constipation
  • Drowsiness
  • Gas
  • Nausea
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Upset stomach
  • Vivid dreams or nightmares
  • Vomiting

Serious Side Effects of Varenicline

  • Allergic reactions or angioedema
  • Heart attack
  • Mood and behavior changes
  • Redness, blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • Stroke
  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg
  • Trouble speaking/walking
  • Confusion
  • Loss of balance or coordination
  • Dizziness
  • Severe headache
  • Change in vision
  • Seizures

Form and Strength

Chantix (Varenicline) is available in the following forms and strengths:

Chantix: Tablet

  • 0.5mg


  • Before using other treatments to quit smoking, consult with your health care provider to determine if the benefits of combining the medications outweigh the risks. If the combination is deemed safe, be aware that you may be at an increased risk for side effects compared to using any one treatment alone.
  • Be aware that this medication may affect your coordination, reaction time, or judgment. Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects you. Sit up or stand slowly to reduce the risk of dizziness or fainting spells. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.
  • For patients and their families to be alert for any signs of worsening depression or suicidal thoughts. Be aware of any sudden changes in feelings, such as increased anxiety, agitation, panic, irritability, hostility, aggression, impulsiveness, extreme restlessness, excessive excitement or hyperactivity, or difficulty sleeping.
  • To reduce the potential risks of alcohol-related side effects, decrease the amount of alcohol you consume during treatment with this medication until you know how it affects your ability to tolerate alcohol.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How long can a patient take CHANTIX?

Most people will take CHANTIX for up to 12 weeks. If you have completely quit smoking by 12 weeks, your healthcare provider may prescribe CHANTIX for another 12 weeks to help you stay cigarette-free. Take CHANTIX after eating and with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.

Does Chantix work immediately?

Chantix is a pill that you take with a large glass of water. Your doctor will tell you how often and what dose to take. It takes at least one week to work, and for some people even longer.

How many times can you take CHANTIX?

Do not take more than 1 milligram twice a day. Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each day. Tell your doctor if you continue to smoke after a few weeks of treatment.

Can I stop CHANTIX suddenly?

In some cases, a short tapering off of the dose over a week or so may be helpful. This is because at the end of treatment, if the medicine is stopped abruptly, about 3 in 100 people experience an increase in irritability, an urge to smoke, depression, and/or sleeping difficulty for a short time.


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Online Pharmacies Canada has provided information from third parties intended to increase awareness and does not contain all the information about Chantix (Varenicline). Talk to your doctor or other qualified medical practitioners for medical attention or advice, or if you have any concerns about Chantix (Varenicline).