New to Vaping? Expect These Mouth and Throat Problems to Hound You

vaper's tongue image
Image Credit: Evil Erin via Flickr under Creative Commons

The transition period is a crucial time for anyone who’s trying to quit a nicotine addiction, but who’s still in love with cigarettes. The temptation to light up a stick is so strong that some are likely to fall off the wagon a few times before getting back up and never leaving it.

This period usually starts from the day new vapers took their last drag until the day they realized they haven’t touched a single stick in weeks hits them in the gut. So, what happens during this time?

Vaper’s Tongue and Dry Mouth

Vapor Lady Lounge shares her past experience with this temporary loss of her two senses when she was new to vaping:

When you quit, the taste buds are overwhelmed with the new tastes and the lack of smoke it has become accustomed to for more than 40 years, so a rebellion of sorts in order, namely, they shut down and go on strike. Just another of those darned symptoms that are supposed to make you reach for those nasty old cigarettes and start puffing away to give the senses what they are used to, (silly senses don’t know how dangerous smoking is).

As you adjust to life as a non-smoker this shutdown effect is likely to happen several times. These shutdowns usually last anywhere from a few hours to a couple days. Gradually, your taste buds start firing up again and you’ll just realize at some point the flavor has returned all on its own.

Other reasons for a vaper’s tongue include a blocked nose caused by an illness; burned or damaged taste buds; prescriptive drugs for thyroid disorder, depression and cancer; and extreme stress and anxiety. Vapers should also take into consideration that the e-liquids they were using were already expired, or that their atomizers were not thoroughly cleaned and full of bacteria.

In addition to an insensate tongue, vapers also experience dryness and numbness in the mouth. Some people theorize it’s caused by too much exposure to PG or propylene glycol, which is a common carrier solvent used in e-liquids alongside another substance called vegetable glycerin.

Don’t worry about this too much. Try to drink lots of water as advised by The Ecig Alternative:

The dry mouth side effect is usually easily rectified by increasing water intake; i.e. small sips of water often. This doesn’t mean to say you’ll necessarily be sipping water non-stop, just that your water consumption may increase.

Soreness and Pain in the Throat

A common complaint among new vapers is sore throat, which can be caused by several factors. One factor is the high nicotine strength of the e-liquid. Anything over 3% is suspect. Another reason is too much PG in the solution. Choose an e-liquid that has more vegetable glycerin than propylene glycol.

But, there’s a third reason. Smokers who vape think it’s the same as taking a long drag from a cigarette. It’s not as simple as that. An e-cig has a compact atomizer that heats up the liquid and turns it into vapor. It doesn’t need air to burn the nicotine juice.

Pulling a deep breath of vapor can irritate your throat, but taking quick and shallow puffs may not be as satisfying to some people as they expected. A trick to get the most from a short drag is to take it “slow and measured (2 to 3 seconds), and vapor should enter your mouth with ease, leaving behind no uncomfortable feeling when you exhale.”

Moreover, e-cig users should space their vapes evenly throughout the day. Too much too soon can lead to an irritated throat, which is the reason for an increased production of phlegm and saliva. And, this is why vapers have coughing fits. To relieve the irritation and soreness in the throat, take a lozenge or two during the day.


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Calvin started vaping in 2004 after being a smoker for 17 years and hasn’t looked back since. He was a pack a day smoker that had tried the patch, the gum, the lozenges and the hypnotist. Nothing seemed to work! He came across a cig alike at a mall booth and finally found something to help him move away from traditional tobacco. Vaping has changed his life. He feels healthier and he can breathe again. Calvin has seen a lot of changes in the electronic cigarette market since 2004 and loves the innovation that has gone into the new products on the market today.

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