Vaping Symptoms

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Common Vaping Symptoms

Although many new vapers quickly adapt without problems, others find themselves struggling with their vaping symptoms and/or with finding a nicotine strength which satisfies them.

If you are struggling to find satisfaction with vaping after a few days, weeks, or even months (some people have found that vaping works at first but a craving for something else develops over time) then I hope that this note will be helpful.

The first thing to recognize is that some symptoms of switching from smoking to vaping are not related to your chemical needs:

1. There is no quick satisfaction (rush) from vaping. Nicotine reaches the brain very quickly from smoking. Nicotine absorbed by vaping has a slower smoother effect. This changes the feel a bit and it may take a while to get used to the different delivery speed. It also can make it hard to tell when you are getting too little vs. too much.

2. Smoking delivers carbon monoxide, vaping does not. This is of course a good thing. But if you feel a lack of “rush” effect from vaping this could be the cause. You will adapt to this, carbon monoxide isn’t something you are addicted to.

3. You may feel a sore throat, dry mouth, and/or cold-like symptoms. For most people this passes after about a week. Drinking more liquids may help. Note that these are common symptoms of quitting smoking, related to tar. For a particular person they may or may not be aggravated by vaping. If these get very bad you should consider switching from vaping a PG based liquid (the most common liquids) to a VG based one or seeing a doctor (perhaps something else is causing the symptoms.)

4. You may start producing more phlegm for a month or so, and have associated coughing. If you’ve quit smoking in the past you’ll recognize this symptom. Your lungs are clearing some of the tar from the past at a faster rate than they could while you were smoking.

5. Hiccups. As a new vaper you may find yourself swallowing some juice when you overfill cartridges, flood your atomizer, and then suck it in by mistake. Swallowing nicotine can trigger hiccups. You’ll learn how to avoid flooding the atty with practice.

Now let’s talk about the nicotine strength to use. Your body doesn’t feel right but you don’t know whether to reduce or increase the level of nicotine you are vaping. Or you’ve increased the nicotine strength a few times and it isn’t helping.

Many symptoms of over-dosing on nicotine and of cigarette withdrawal are similar so it can be hard to tell which of these is happening.

A disclaimer here: I am not a professional in this field. The symptoms I describe below and attribute to either to under or over dose of nicotine are information I have assembled by reading web sites and published studies; my advice is based only on that. I can not promise that they are absolute indications. Above all in your process of switching to vaping, listen to your body. If you can work out what it is telling you then that’s the best advice of all.

The symptoms of nicotine overdose are clearer indicators of what is happening in your body than the symptoms of withdrawal. This is because nicotine overdose has been studied a fair bit. Nicotine withdrawal has not been studied nearly as much. What has been studied a lot is cigarette withdrawal which is a different thing – it includes no longer inhaling a few thousand chemicals, not just nicotine.


Symptoms of nicotine overdose:

  • racing pulse, palpitations
  • sweaty palms
  • racing pulse, palpitations
  • sweaty palms and feet, cold sweats
  • slurred speech, lisp
  • muscle twitching
  • hearing or vision problems
  • salivation, drooling
  • loss of appetite
  • vomiting

Symptoms of cigarette withdrawal which I think are primarily associated with nicotine withdrawal:

  • increased appetite
  • constipation

Symptoms of cigarette withdrawal which may be due to nicotine withdrawal but may also be due to withdrawal from something else:

  • cravings
  • difficulty concentrating
  • irritability, frustration, anger

Symptoms which have been associated both with nicotine overdose and with cigarette withdrawal. These are symptoms which can make it hard to tell what’s going on:

  • headaches
  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • depression
  • diarrhea
  • anxiety
  • shortness of breath, chest tightness
  • fatigue, drowsiness
  • insomnia
  • tingling feelings
  • confusion

With luck you’ll be able to match up a few things you are feeling with vaping symptoms that indicate that you are over-dosing or under-dosing, then adjust your nicotine level accordingly and start feeling right.

Common Vaping Symptoms

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