Posts Tagged ‘Quitting Smoking’

Quitting Smoking

By Trevor Shewfelt, Pharmacist at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy

 

“Ewww, naked fat man!” I looked up and saw Emily pointing at me.  My daughter exaggerates.  I was trying to get ready for work.  Yes, I was in the kitchen looking for my phone.  Yes, I didn’t have a shirt on yet, but I did have pants on, so I didn’t qualify as naked.  I think the fat comment was a little harsh as well.  However, maybe she has a point.  Maybe my New Year’s Resolution should be to lose a little weight.

 

What about your New Year’s Resolutions?  Are you thinking of quitting smoking this year?  I was listening to an interview with a cancer researcher.  He was asked what would be the next big cancer break through.  He said we can already significantly reduce the amount of cancer in the population.  He said the number 1, 2, 3, and 4 best things for reducing cancer in the population is quitting smoking.  So….HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!  Now is the time to quit.

 

Smoking is the number 1 cause of premature death in North America.  Name a body part, and we can tell you how smoking is bad for it.  Other than the heart and lungs that everyone knows about, let’s talk about some less discussed problems.  Smoking decreases the blood flow to the skin, and this leads to leathery-looking skin and increased wrinkling.  The more you smoke, the more likely you are to get cataracts -an eye problem that can lead to blindness.  Smoking is the main reason people get cancer in the mouth.  Smoking makes it harder for your saliva to remove germs in your mouth.  You’ll get stains, bad breath, and a higher chance of gum disease.  Smokers are twice as likely as non-smokers to develop psoriasis – a disfiguring red and silver rash that can occur anywhere on your body.  Smokers are more prone to stomach ulcers.  The ulcers don’t heal as fast, and they’re more likely to recur.  There’s also growing evidence that smoking may increase the risk of chronic bowel disease.  Finally, guys, smoking causes impotence.

 

Are you ready to quit this year?  It won’t be easy.  The numbers I could find said that only about 10% of people who try to quit cold turkey will succeed.  About 20% of smokers will successfully kick the habit if they use a medication and a detailed smoking cessation plan worked out with a health care professional.

 

The Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy runs such a quit smoking program.  You just come into the pharmacy and say you want to sign up for the quit smoking program.  We will charge you $99 and give you a questionnaire to fill out.  You will come in and visit the pharmacist 4-6 times and get take home assignments each time.  These assignments will have do things like log every cigarette you smoke and why you smoked it for 24 hours, and completing questionnaires that will help determine how addicted you are to nicotine.  After your assignments are done, you will book an appointment to sit down with one of our pharmacists.  The two of you will review how you smoke and how would be the best way to get you to quit.  You and the pharmacist will decide which medication will be the best one to help you quit smoking.  If you pick a prescription medication, the pharmacist will contact your doctor to get a prescription for you.

 

What medications are available to help quit smoking?  The most popular, by far, is the prescription pill called Champix or varenicline.  It works well, but the reason it is popular is because it is the only medication that is covered by pharmacare.  Other medications include the prescription pill Zyban and nicotine patches, gums and lozenges.  If you want to try something different, how about a Nicotine Lollipop?  Nicotine Lollipops are prescription items that the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy can custom make for people under the direction of their doctor.

 

We make 2mg and 4mg Nicotine Lollipops in strawberry flavor, but we can customize the flavor or the strength under the direction of your doctor.  The idea behind the Nicotine Lollipop is we are putting some of the nicotine back into your system that the cigarette used to provide.  This will help reduce (not eliminate) the cravings for cigarettes.  There is an added bonus.  People who have used the Lollipop say they like that they are still putting something in their mouth like they used to do with a cigarette.

 

How do you use the Nicotine Lollipop and how long does it last?  This will vary person to person, but in general one Lollipop will last about 1/2 a pack of cigarettes.   During your regular cigarette break you put the Lollipop in your mouth for about 5 minutes or until the craving passes (whichever is less) and then you reseal the Lollipop in our special child proof container and put it away until your next craving.  What strength of Lollipop do you need?  That will depend on the patient, but usually the 2mg Lollipop is for 1 or less packs a day, and the 4 mg is for people who smoke more than a pack a day.

 

Emily is always excited when January rolls around.  She likes January because her birthday is early in the month.  I have to admit I am less than excited by the idea of trying to become less of a “fat man” this January.  If you are apprehensive about trying to quit smoking this year, call the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy at 204-638-4602.  Maybe the signing up for the $99 Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy Quit Smoking Program can make you a non-smoker this New Year.

 

As always if you have any questions or concerns about these or other products, ask your pharmacist.

 

The information in this article is intended as a helpful guide only.  It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice.  If you have any questions about your medications and what is right for you see your doctor, pharmacist or other health care professional.

 

We now have this and most other articles published in the Parkland Shopper on our Website.  Please visit us at www.dcp.ca

QUITTING SMOKING – Audio

By Trevor Shewfelt.  Recorded by the nice people at 730 CKDM, The Parkland’s Best Music

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

QUITTING SMOKING

By Trevor Shewfelt, Pharmacist at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy

 Deep fried garlic stuffed olives and deep fried sushi both taste way better than you would think.  Deep fried spinach tastes as bad as it sounds.  I was at a clog your arteries party for New Year’s Eve.  The Roncins offered up their house and back yard for us to deep fry everything and anything.  As it happened, there was a Fire Fighter at the party.  We didn’t end up needing his expertise, but I tried hard.   You see I contributed my version of fireworks to the evening by forgetting the burner on under my new deep fry pot.  That started quite a nice grease fire.  We turned off the burner and put the lid on the pot to put out the fire.  Luckily there were no injuries or damage.  Obviously you should double check to make sure your deep fry burner is off before you go in and watch the hockey game.

 

I know I’m not alone when I say I love deep fried food.  Despite our collective love of grease, as a group it isn’t cholesterol that is killing us the fastest.  Smoking is the number 1 cause of premature death inNorth America.  Name a body part, and we can tell you how smoking is bad for it.  Other than the heart and lungs that everyone knows about, let’s talk about some less discussed problems.  Smoking decreases the blood flow to the skin, and this leads to leathery-looking skin and increased wrinkling.  The more you smoke, the more likely you are to get cataracts -an eye problem that can lead to blindness.  Smoking is the main reason people get cancer in the mouth.  Smoking makes it harder for your saliva to remove germs in your mouth.  You’ll get stains, bad breath, and a higher chance of gum disease.  Smokers are twice as likely as non-smokers to develop psoriasis – a disfiguring red and silver rash that can occur anywhere on your body.  Smokers are more prone to stomach ulcers.  The ulcers don’t heal as fast, and they’re more likely to recur.  There’s also growing evidence that smoking may increase the risk of chronic bowel disease.  Finally, guys, smoking causes impotence.

 

On the plus side for public health, over the last few years smoking bans have made it been harder to smoke in public places.  These bans have encouraged many people to quit.  Arguably those smokers who find quitting easy have quit already.  Those who are still smoking may need some help.  Maybe they even need a little incentive to quit.  The Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy is running a quit smoking program with a cash prize of up to $1000.  Would that help you decide to quit?

 

Here is how the program works.  You come into the pharmacy and say you want to sign up for the quit smoking program.  We will charge you $40 and give you a questionnaire to fill out.  The pharmacy is going to keep $20 to run the quit smoking program and put $20 into a prize pot.  We are going to try to enroll 50 people into our quit smoking program.  If we get 50 people to put down their money, the prize pot will be $1000!  We have already had several people sign up.

 

What do you have to do to have a chance to win the cash?  After you pay your money you will get several questionnaires and assignments to fill out over several days.  These assignments include having you log every cigarette you smoke and why you smoked it for 24 hours, and completing questionnaires that will help determine how addicted you are to nicotine.  Then you will book an appointment to sit down with one of our pharmacists.  The two of you will review how you smoke and how would be the best way to get you to quit.  You will also have to pick a medication to help you quit smoking.  Yes, you can quit smoking without medication, but we need you to be on one for this program.  I’ll tell you why in a moment.

 

After you have finished your assignments and met with the pharmacist, the pharmacist will help you make a plan to quit smoking.  If you pick a prescription medication, the pharmacist will contact your doctor to get a prescription for you.  You will then fill your prescription every 2 weeks for at least 8 weeks.  If you do that, you are eligible for the cash prize draw of up to $1000.

 

Some of you might be saying, “Hey, they aren’t going to check to see if I quit smoking or not!”  You’re right.  There are two reasons for that.  First, I can’t physically follow 50 people 24/7 to see if they are smoking or not.  Second, I don’t want people to feel the need to lie to me.  When people try to quit smoking, many are going to slip up or relapse.  If someone relapses we want them to talk to the pharmacist about their relapse cigarette and make a plan to prevent that from happening next time.  We don’t want them to deny it ever happened in the first place.  To be eligible for the cash prize, you just have to do all the assignments we ask and fill your medication on time every 2 weeks for at least 8 weeks.  At the end of the program we will draw one name from the people who completed all their tasks and draw one cash prize winner.

 

The Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy quit smoking program will run from November 24, 2011 to April 30, 2012.  If you pay your $40 and do everything we ask, your name stays in the prize draw.  If we get 50 people in the program, the prize pot will grow to $1000.  That should be an extra incentive to quit!  As an added bonus, on November 24, 2011 the quit smoking medication Champix went on the Pharmacare formulary.  That means if you are over your pharmacare deductible, and your doctor writes you a prescription for Champix, you won’t have to pay for it! 

 

Maybe this is the year you will quit smoking.  Quitting smoking is far and away the best thing you can do for your health.  Think about laying your $40 on the table.  Maybe you’ll even win up to $1000!  And if when you see me this New Year, ask me if my burner is off.

 

As always if you have any questions or concerns about these or other products, ask your pharmacist.  

 

The information in this article is intended as a helpful guide only.  It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice.  If you have any questions about your medications and what is right for you see your doctor, pharmacist or other health care professional.

 

We now have this and most other articles published in the Parkland Shopper on our Website.  Please visit us at www.dcp.ca

 

 

QUITTING SMOKING

By Trevor Shewfelt, Pharmacist at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy

 

A few summers ago we were camping with friends and in the evening I was smoking a cigar.  I really like cigars.  The next day someone mentioned the cigar to my daughter, Emily.  She told them that her dad would never smoke, because smoking is very bad for your health.  She said her dad was only using the cigar smoke to keep the mosquitoes away.  Despite my daughter’s good intentions, I have smoked cigars and inhaled on many fishing trips.  I wouldn’t consider myself a regular smoker, but after a few beers I have enjoyed a cigarette or two.  Yes, this is an occasional habit that isn’t doing me any good.  Emily wouldn’t be impressed.

 

Smoking is the number 1 cause of premature death in North America.  Name a body part, and we can tell you how smoking is bad for it.  Other than the heart and lungs that everyone knows about, let’s talk about some less discussed problems.  Smoking decreases the blood flow to the skin, and this leads to leathery-looking skin and increased wrinkling.  The more you smoke, the more likely you are to get cataracts -an eye problem that can lead to blindness.  Smoking is the main reason people get cancer in the mouth.  Smoking makes it harder for your saliva to remove germs in your mouth.  You’ll get stains, bad breath, and a higher chance of gum disease.  Smokers are twice as likely as non-smokers to develop psoriasis – a disfiguring red and silver rash that can occur anywhere on your body.  Smokers are more prone to stomach ulcers.  The ulcers don’t heal as fast, and they’re more likely to recur.  There’s also growing evidence that smoking may increase the risk of chronic bowel disease.  Finally, guys, smoking causes impotence.

 

Maybe I need a little more incentive to quit.  What about you?  What if the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy ran a quit smoking program with a cash prize of up to $1000?  Would that help you decide to quit?

 

Here is how the program will work.  You will come into the pharmacy and say you want to sign up for the quit smoking program.  We will charge you $40 and give you a questionnaire to fill out.  The pharmacy is going to keep $20 to run the quit smoking program and put $20 into a prize pot.  We are going to try to enroll 50 people into our quit smoking program.  If we get 50 people to put down their money, the prize pot will be $1000!

 

What do you have to do to have a chance to win the cash?  After you pay your money you will get several questionnaires and assignments to fill out over several days.  These assignments include having you log every cigarette you smoke and why you smoked it for 24 hours, and completing questionnaires that will help determine how addicted you are to nicotine.  Then you will book an appointment to sit down with one of our pharmacists.  The two of you will review how you smoke and how would be the best way to get you to quit.  You will also have to pick a medication to help you quit smoking.  Yes, you can quit smoking without medication, but we need you to be on one for this program.  I’ll tell you why in a moment.

 

After you have finished your assignments and met with the pharmacist, the pharmacist will help you make a plan to quit smoking.  If you pick a prescription medication, the pharmacist will contact your doctor to get a prescription for you.  You will then fill your prescription every 2 weeks for at least 8 weeks.  If you do that, you are eligible for the cash prize draw of up to $1000.

 

Some of you might be saying, “Hey, they aren’t going to check to see if I quit smoking or not!”  You’re right.  There are two reasons for that.  First, I can’t physically follow 50 people 24/7 to see if they are smoking or not.  Second, I don’t want people to feel the need to lie to me.  When people try to quit smoking, many are going to slip up or relapse.  If someone relapses we want them to talk to the pharmacist about their relapse cigarette and make a plan to prevent that from happening next time.  We don’t want them to deny it ever happened in the first place.  To be eligible for the cash prize, you just have to do all the assignments we ask and fill your medication on time every 2 weeks for at least 8 weeks.  At the end of the program we will draw one name from the people who completed all their tasks and draw one cash prize winner.

 

The Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy quit smoking program will run from November 24, 2011 to April 30, 2012.  If you pay your $40 and do everything we ask, your name stays in the prize draw.  If we get 50 people in the program, the prize pot will grow to $1000.  That should be an extra incentive to quit!  As an added bonus, on November 24 the quit smoking medication Champix goes on the Pharmacare formulary.  That means if you are over your pharmacare deductible, and your doctor writes you a prescription for Champix, you won’t have to pay for it!  So some lucky people will only have to lay down $40, do some assignments and then pick up their Champix for free every two weeks for 8 weeks to be eligible for the prize draw of up to $1000.

 

Maybe this time you will quit smoking.  Think about laying your $40 on the table.  Maybe you’ll even win up to $1000!  And if you see me with a cigarette in Dauphin, feel free to tell me my daughter wouldn’t be proud of me.

 

As always if you have any questions or concerns about these or other products, ask your pharmacist.  

 

The information in this article is intended as a helpful guide only.  It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice.  If you have any questions about your medications and what is right for you see your doctor, pharmacist or other health care professional.

 

We now have this and most other articles published in the Parkland Shopper on our Website.  Please visit us at www.dcp.ca

Quitting Smoking

By Trevor Shewfelt, Pharmacist at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy

 

I was talking to my friend Peter over the holidays.  We grew up in the same town, on the same street, went to same school and he was the best man at my wedding.  He and his wife Lili have two twin boys who are 3 and a half.  We were talking about our kids and Christmas.  Apparently, I am failing as a parent.  We both reminisced about how much fun it was when we were kids to go out into the bush and cut down a Christmas tree.  My kids, however, have never had a real Christmas tree.  They have only ever known a plastic tree.  Peter is the better parent.  Although he lives in Hong Kong, he always buys his kids a real tree.  That was just one of the ways Peter seems to be out parenting me.  Maybe my New Years Resolution should be to spend more time with my kids.

What about your New Years Resolutions?  Are you thinking of quitting smoking this year?  I recently heard a lecture from a cancer researcher.  He was asked what would be the next big cancer break through.  He said we can already significantly reduce the amount of cancer in the population.  He said the number 1, 2, 3, and 4 best things for reducing cancer in the population is quitting smoking.  So….HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!  Now is the time to quit.

Smoking is the number 1 cause of premature death in North America.  Name a body part, and we can tell you how smoking is bad for it.  Other than the heart and lungs that everyone knows about, let’s talk about some less discussed problems.  Smoking decreases the blood flow to the skin, and this leads to leathery-looking skin and increased wrinkling.  The more you smoke, the more likely you are to get cataracts -an eye problem that can lead to blindness.  Smoking is the main reason people get cancer in the mouth.  Smoking makes it harder for your saliva to remove germs in your mouth.  You’ll get stains, bad breath, and a higher chance of gum disease.  Smokers are twice as likely as non-smokers to develop psoriasis – a disfiguring red and silver rash that can occur anywhere on your body.  Smokers are more prone to stomach ulcers.  The ulcers don’t heal as fast, and they’re more likely to recur.  There’s also growing evidence that smoking may increase the risk of chronic bowel disease.  Finally, guys, smoking causes impotence.

Are you ready to quit this year?  It won’t be easy.  The numbers I could find said that only about 10% of people who try to quit cold turkey will succeed.  About 20% of smokers will successfully kick the habit if they use a medication and a detailed smoking cessation plan worked out with a health care professional.

The first thing you may want to do is check with your doctor and pick a medication to help you.  Many people have already tried the nicotine patch, the nicotine gum and the prescription pills Zyban or Champix.  Maybe its time to try something different.  How about a Nicotine Lollipop or a Nix Stix?  Nicotine Lollipops and Nix Stixs are prescription items that we can custom make for people under the direction of their doctor.

At the moment we make 2mg and 4mg Nicotine Lollipops in strawberry flavor, but we can customize the flavor or the strength under the direction of your doctor.  The idea behind the Nicotine Lollipop is we are putting some of the nicotine back into your system that the cigarette used to provide.  This will help reduce (not eliminate) the cravings for cigarettes.  There is an added bonus.  People who have used the Lollipop say they like that they are still putting something in their mouth like they used to do with a cigarette.

How do you use the Nicotine Lollipop and how long does it last?  This will vary person to person, but in general one Lollipop will last about 1/2 a pack of cigarettes.   During your regular cigarette break you put the Lollipop in your mouth for about 5 minutes or until the craving passes (whichever is less) and then you reseal the Lollipop in our special child proof container and put it away until your next craving.  What strength of Lollipop do I need?  Your doctor will help you choose when they write the prescription, but usually the 2mg Lollipop is for 1 or less packs a day, and the 4 mg is for people who smoke more than a pack a day. 

What if you are a smoker with a craving at a meeting, and sticking something like a lollipop into your mouth is inappropriate?  What should you do?  Well the nicotine patch is too slow for an immediate craving.  What if you had a discreet little applicator which you could rub on your wrist and get nicotine immediately?  Well at the Dauphin Clinic Pharmacy, we compound such a device for patients at the request of their doctors.  We call it a Nic-Stix and with a prescription from your doctor, we can compound a device that looks like a chap stick tube.  The Nic-Stix has 30mg of nicotine in it so is will last 1-4 weeks depending on use.  The Nic-Stix will melt easily, so it should be kept in a cool place, but is small enough to be carried almost anywhere.  Like the Nicotine Lollipop, it also must be kept away from children because it would be toxic if ingested. 

My five year old son has decided he really likes Silent Night, or as he calls it “That Sleep in Heavenly Peace” song.  Of course he learned it from a Pampers Commercial instead of from Church, because again I am failing as a parent.  Eric wondered why I don’t go into his room every night and sing “That Sleep in Heavenly Peace” song to him.  If you have ever heard me sing you will not be surprised to hear that Eric has tubes in his ears, and occasional trouble hearing.  So while I warm up my vocal cords to try to live up to my Resolution to spend more time with my kids, I wish you good luck and good health while you try to quit smoking.

As always if you have any questions or concerns about these or other products, ask your pharmacist.  

We now have this and most other articles published in the Parkland Shopper on our Website.  Please visit us at www.dcp.ca

The information in this article is intended as a helpful guide only.  It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice.  If you have any questions about your medications and what is right for you see your doctor, pharmacist or other health care professional.

Quitting Smoking – Audio

By Trevor Shewfelt.  Recorded by the nice people at 730 CKDM, The Parkland’s Best Music

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

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