Do quit smoking pills really work to help people quit smoking? First of all, it depends a bit on which pills you are referring to. There are a couple of options when it comes to quitting smoking so let’s consider the different options for a moment.
First of all there is a medication called Zyban, which is also sold as Wellbutrin. This is actually an antidepressant that is also used to help people stop smoking. It seems to work by lessening the reward cycle when someone smokes, and makes cigarettes taste a bit less appealing to the smoker. It is not a huge, dramatic thing that will make someone want to quit very badly or anything–you still need to have the motivation there to begin with. But the pill can help, and some studies have been done that show that this pill is slightly more effective than a placebo.
The second type of quit smoking pill is called Chantix. This medication works in a different way than Zyban but it basically medicates the smoker so that they do not crave cigarettes as much. It is designed so that you start taking the pill while you are still smoking and then plan for a quit date a little while later. They did some studies with this one too and it proved to be more effective than a placebo, and it also proved to be a bit more effective than Zyban when they compared them head to head. However, Chantix probably has more potential for adverse side effects, and in some cases these side effects can even be a bit extreme. There are always trade offs.
Now there are also herbal pills on the market that are basically a blend of herbs that are supposed to help soothe the smoker and reduce cravings while they are trying to quit. These herbal pills for quitting smoking are complete junk in my opinion and will not really help anyone in any way. I have looked for clinical studies based on these and could not find any. Furthermore, I experimented with them myself while trying to quit smoking years ago and they did not do a thing for me.
If you have tried to quit smoking in the past but have failed to succeed at it, then it makes sense to try something different. Try the pills. Talk to your doctor and give the pills a try because you basically have nothing to lose. The cost of continuing to smoke is so much higher than most people realize, and taking a medication for a few weeks in order to quit smoking is no big deal at all. It is more than worth the effort if it helps you to quit in the long run.
And if you try the pills and you fail to quit, who cares? At least you tried, and now you know that it does not work for you, and you can move on to other solutions. If you are serious about quitting then you will not give up in your quest to find a solution for yourself.