Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling the aerosol, often referred to as vapor, which is produced by an e-cigarette or similar device. The term is used because e-cigarettes do not produce tobacco smoke, but rather an aerosol, often mistaken for water vapor, that actually consists of fine particles. The majority of side effects are temporary and are simply an initial reaction to vapor. In general, once your body becomes accustomed to it, the side effects typically subside within a few hours or days. The side effects are associated with inhaling the vapor and are also associated with smoking.
Why Is Nicotine In Vaping?
When individuals stop smoking, they often miss the nicotine and may suffer various nicotine withdrawal symptoms, making quitting difficult. Vaping can replace this nicotine but with a fraction of the pollutants present in cigarette smoke, if not all of them.
Is Nicotine Harmful?
For People Who Smoke:
- Nicotine itself is low harm
- Nicotine has little or no long-term health effects
- Nicotine is addictive, and if your vape contains nicotine, you will still be addicted to this
- it’s what comes with the nicotine that could be harmful
What Does Nicotine Do?
Nicotine is addictive because it affects the region of the brain responsible for ‘rewarding behavior.’ In addition, nicotine causes many undesirable side effects, including nausea and vomiting. Smokers have become used to these side effects. Nonsmokers, on the other hand, who are exposed to nicotine may feel this. Therefore, individuals who do not smoke should abstain from nicotine.
High doses of nicotine can be dangerous. Nicotine can affect brain development in babies, and ideally, pregnant women should be smoke-free and nicotine-free. Nicotine products, on the other hand, are used to assist pregnant women in quitting smoking. Additional information can be obtained from your physician or local quit smoking services. Nicotine can also have a detrimental effect on adolescent brain development. To avoid accidental poisoning, keep e-liquids out of reach of children and pets.
Different Strengths Of Nicotine
Vape e-liquid is available in a variety of nicotine concentrations. As a result, the strength of what you begin with often depends on how much you smoke and how early in the day you begin. By and large, the more addicted you are to nicotine, the larger the dosage you should begin with.
Vapers have the option of gradually decreasing their vaping frequency and the level of nicotine in their e-liquid. However, vapers should reduce their nicotine levels only when they are certain they will not return to smoking and are not needed to puff more to compensate.
Vaping VS Smoking
The distinction between smoking and vaping is that smoking distributes nicotine through the process of tobacco combustion, which may result in smoking-related diseases. Vaping may deliver nicotine in a far less dangerous manner by heating a liquid.
- Harm: Smoking is terrible for your health as the toxins produced by burning tobacco cause smoking-related illnesses. The majority of health benefits are seen when you stop smoking completely. Some people find cutting down as a helpful step to quitting but stopping smoking ultimately should be the end goal. Vaping is not harmless, but it is much less harmful than smoking.
- Nicotine: Smoking and vaping both deliver nicotine. The difference is cigarettes provide it by burning tobacco, which creates many harmful toxins. Vaping delivers nicotine in e-liquid, which is a much less dangerous way. In smoking, the amount of nicotine in cigarettes is generally fixed, and how much you get depends on how you smoke. The amount of nicotine depends on the strength of the e-liquid you choose and how you vape in vaping. But above all, the healthiest option is not to vape or smoke.
- Feel: Vaping is not smoking, but some people find vaping works to help them quit because it offers experiences similar to smoking a cigarette. For example, Vaping has a similar hand-to-mouth action as smoking, and it can also be social.
- Cost: Aside from the initial $40-$60 approximate setup cost, vaping costs much less than smoking. Twenty cigarettes per day are higher a year than vaping a year.
How Does Vaping Affect The Brain?
The nicotine in e-liquids is readily absorbed from the lungs into the bloodstream when someone vapes an e-cigarette. Upon entering the blood, nicotine stimulates the adrenal glands to release the hormone epinephrine (adrenaline). Epinephrine stimulates the central nervous system and increases blood pressure, breathing, and heart rate. In addition, as with most addictive substances, nicotine activates the brain’s reward circuits and increases levels of a chemical messenger in the brain called dopamine, which reinforces rewarding behaviors. Pleasure caused by nicotine’s interaction with the reward circuit motivates some people to use nicotine repeatedly, despite risks to their health and well-being.
How Can I Reduce The Side Effects Of Vaping?
Fortunately, you can eliminate most side effects of vaping or reduce them by taking simple preventive measures. However, since there can be different reasons for different results, let’s talk about them one by one.
- Dry Mouth and Skin Issues: Dehydration due to vaping can cause dry mouth or dry throat, itchy, flaky, red skin, and several other effects. Vapor has the nature to attract water molecules from the surroundings, and you will feel it in your mouth. If you experience any of these issues, drinking plenty of fluids can dramatically minimize the condition. Some of these effects might be helpful, e.g., dry skin in people with very oily skin. However, staying hydrated is still essential.
- Dizziness: Excessive nicotine intake can cause dizziness. If you’re feeling dizzy, you are probably taking more nicotine than your body can handle. This effect is commonly associated with sub-ohm when large plumes of vapor are entering your body. Luckily, fixing this issue is switching to e-liquid with a lower nicotine strength or vaping at a higher resistance.
- Caffeine Sensitivity: Many people who switch to vaping feel subtle withdrawals and drink more coffee or other caffeinated drinks. Early days of using a vaporizer can cause caffeine sensitivity and result in anxiety and mood swings. Just reduce your intake of caffeine, and all these symptoms will quickly dissipate.
- Allergies: As we mentioned earlier, almost all e-juices come with a PG/VG base. Despite being considered “generally safe” by the FDA, PG can trigger a few allergies. VG, on the other hand, is derived from vegetables and goes easy on your system. So, if you’re using high PG e-liquids and experience allergies, switching to high VG e-liquid can be helpful.
- Canker Sores: Canker sores (don’t confuse them with cold sores) are small, shallow blisters inside the mouth; the cause has several reasons: injury to the mouth, vitamin deficiency, acidic and spicy foods, and hormone disorders, stress, and vaping. However, vapor or e-liquids don’t have to do with canker sores, but the issue is failure to keep the mouthpiece clean. Anything you put into your mouth should always be clean, especially the e-cig mouthpiece that tends to accumulate a lot of gunk.
Vaping & Addiction
Vaping, like any other habit, may develop into an addiction. Even hair tugging as a compulsive desire may develop into an obnoxious habit. Psychological dependency on e-cigarettes has an impact as well. Occasionally, the habit itself is addicting, resulting in withdrawal symptoms when a frequent vaper is unable to vape. However, the presence of medication is not always required.
With the rise in popularity of vaping, several health organizations are worried that a large number of young adults may begin. Continue to teach your youngsters and younger siblings about potential health concerns and addiction problems. Nicotine may have detrimental impacts on a teenager’s growing brain. It is preferable to prevent an adolescent from ever vaping, but especially if the e-juice includes nicotine.
Is Addiction Bad?
Addiction can be harmful if it negatively impacts your life. These impacts could be health, financial or cultural. Nicotine itself does not have a significant effect on the health of people who smoke. However, nicotine addiction can make you feel irritable, restless, unable to concentrate, and most people experience cravings when they go without it. Having it takes away these symptoms, and this can keep you stuck in a cycle of addiction.
At We Level Up Treatment Center provides world-class care with round-the-clock medical professionals available to help you cope. Vaping side effects can be from short-term, minor issues to something so severe that you might have to stop vaping – though the latter is scarce. Therefore, we recommend keeping an eye on your health when you switch to vaping and immediately consult your doctor if you notice the severe side effects of vaping. Make this your opportunity to reclaim your life. Call today to speak with one of our treatment specialists.
Your call is private and confidential, and there is never any obligation.
NIDA – View PDF (drugabuse.gov)