Vaper’s Tongue: Causes And Possible Treatments
If you're new to vaping, you might come across several terms and phrases that may not be immediately comprehensible. This goes to show how vaping has developed into its own distinct subculture, complete with a rich vocab that may be difficult to pick up for rookies or anyone unaccustomed to vaping. The good news is that it doesn’t take long to get up to speed on this vaping lingo. Vaper's tongue is one such example of a term that is unique to the vaping subculture. Question is, what does it actually mean?
Understanding Vapers Tongue
When someone has vaper's tongue, they suddenly lose their sense of taste partially or completely and find it difficult to clearly perceive vape flavours. While this muting of the taste buds may last several days, there is no need to panic really. Obviously, it can be frustrating when you are unable to perceive flavours, but the good news is that this condition is reversible. Before we explain how, it’s only prudent to first understand what actually causes vaper’s tongue. We have discussed this below.
Overusing The Same Flavour
It's common knowledge that e-liquids come in a wide assortment of delectable flavours. These literally number in the hundreds, so even picky tongues should be able to find something that suits them. Nonetheless, there are situations when we may be guilty of vaping a particular flavour a tad too much. Such prolonged use without switching between flavours is one of the causes of vaper’s tongue.
Dry mouth is a common side effect of vaping due to the ingredients that constitute vape juice – in particular, propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerine (VG). When you vape for a prolonged time without drinking enough water, this can get in the way of your smell and taste receptors, leading to vaper's tongue.
The link between elevated stress levels and anxiety and altered olfactory and gustatory perception is not well understood. But it is true that some people experience a loss of taste and smell when they are suffering from stress and anxiety.
Smoking has multiple negative effects on oral health. It has the potential to dampen activity in the smell and taste receptors which are closely connected. If either one is affected, the normal functioning of the other is compromised. This is something you’ve probably noticed when you catch a flu. If you continue to smoke while vaping, this can also have a negative bearing on your flavour perception.
Some Common Treatments For Vaper's Tongue
It doesn't take Einstein to deduce some of the things you can do to cure vaper’s tongue or shorten its duration when you look at the causes. Surprisingly, time may be your best friend here. Yes, time. If you abstain from vaping for about two or three days, the problem should go away on its own. If you're hooked to nicotine, though, that can be a hard ask as it literally means you have to power through the horrible feelings of nicotine withdrawal and tame your cravings. For most, that’s not too ideal. The good thing is that there are alternative remedies for vaper’s tongue you can try out without having to sit out days without a vape.
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
The importance of good oral health is something that has been drilled into us from a young age. The bad news is that not everyone follows this advice. Vapers who neglect their oral hygiene routine do so at their own risk as there is a higher likelihood of getting vaper’s tongue. That said, aim to brush at least twice a day and if you don’t normally do, make it a practice of brushing the back of your tongue as well.
Swap Out Your Flavours
We get it, some vape flavours are hard to put down. While you may be guilty of indulging yourself too much on one, you also run the risk of compromising your sense of taste by doing so. Feel free to have a go-to all-day vape (ADV), but make it standard practice to always change flavours every so often.
We are often reminded not to skip the proverbial eight glasses a day. As a vaper, this advice takes on even more importance because some e-liquid components like we mentioned can cause dehydration. This explains why you might see some vaper’s with a bottle of water on hand almost always. You can take a leaf out of that book. You might want to steer clear of or consume in moderation diuretic beverages such as soda, alcohol and caffeinated drinks like coffee and black tea which increase the need to go to the bathroom more frequently. Or at least replace the fluids lost by drinking more water.
Avoid mixing vapes and cigarettes as this can increase the odds of getting vaper's tongue. As it is, vaping is an effective substitute to smoking and can help you quit cigarettes for good if that’s the goal. If the transition feels a bit challenging, try nicotine salts. These e-liquids are more realistic in their simulation of the smoking sensation compared to freebase e-liquids, so they should help you deal with cravings more effectively.
Suck On A Lemon
Lemon juice has several health benefits for your body, and one of the more overlooked advantages is its ability to cleanse the palate. If you get vaper's tongue, try sucking on a slice of lemon or drinking some freshly-squeezed lemon juice. This can help awaken your taste buds as a result of the bitterness from the lemon.
Smell Some Coffee
This will reset your nose in the same way as sucking on a lemon does to your tongue. If you’ve ever shopped for perfume in person, you have probably seen small containers with coffee beans in perfume shops: their purpose is to refresh the olfactory. It’s actually a technique often utilised by perfume testers and wine tasters. If you have some coffee beans on hand, give them a whiff for when you have vaper’s tongue and see if it does the trick. Conclusion Although vaper's tongue is not life-threatening, it’s not something you want to get as it only compromises your ability to enjoy your vape. The treatments for vapers' tongue that we've detailed here may or may not be effective for everyone. But, they are well worth a shot, especially for nicotine users who may have trouble going a day – let alone a few hours – without their regular fix.