Clinically Reviewed by: Charee Marquez, LMFT
Manufacturers of vapes are pushing their products’ popularity by marketing them as safer alternatives to smoking. Yet, vaping addiction is a serious issue that is afflicting many young individuals today. This post offers a comprehensive overview of the nicotine buzz from vaping, how it works, and how it affects your body.
What is a Nicotine Buzz?
In a nutshell, “nicotine buzz” defines the sensation you receive when you “take” nicotine. Nicotine’s intoxicating effects are difficult to describe. It has been reported that new vapers feel it, while many more experienced vapers say they have never felt it. Seasoned vapers may experience it under the right conditions, but newbies are more likely to discover it immediately.
The intoxicating effects of nicotine buzz and the degree to which different people feel them may vary greatly. Most people know their intoxication levels because they feel a rush in their heads, comparable to when they get up too quickly. You may feel faint or dizzy; some people have even described feeling as if they were going to die.
Nicotine causes dopamine levels to rise rapidly, dopamine has the uncanny ability to simultaneously make you feel satisfied, calm, and inspired. As a result, many individuals who get a nicotine buzz report feeling delighted. Some individuals also report experiencing tingling or numbness across their whole body. This is often followed by a weightless sensation as if the individual were floating in midair. Some people experience cramps and tremors when on a nicotine buzz, sometimes called a “high.” The word “high” may be deceptive in this context since nicotine does not alter consciousness directly but rather via interactions with neurotransmitters in the body.
Why Does Nicotine Give You A Buzz?
The neurotransmitters and hormones that nicotine triggers in the brain and spinal cord cause its physiological effects, including the nicotine buzz. Nicotine enters the circulation quickly and gets to the brain when inhaled via a vaporizer or smoked in cigarettes.
Both adrenaline and dopamine levels rise in response to nicotine usage. The release of adrenaline is a common physiological response to the “fight or flight” state that might arise in the brain. Unlike the adrenaline, dopamine is responsible for feelings of excitement, pleasure and positive energy. While adrenaline is responsible for the “racing” sensation and the “headrush” that comes with nicotine intake, dopamine is the neurotransmitter responsible for a vaper’s good sensations.
How Long Does A Nicotine Buzz Last?
Unfortunately, the brain’s neurotransmitters do not have an endless capacity, and nicotine overdose may ultimately lead to their depletion. This occurs rapidly and shows that you have built a tolerance to the effects of nicotine. When this happens, the rush of a nicotine buzz disappears and tolerance occurs.
Inhaled nicotine may have an impact as soon as 10 seconds. The effects of nicotine or electronic cigarettes might last anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the individual. The longer someone uses nicotine or vapes, the shorter the initial high lasts and the more accustomed they get to the negative repercussions of the drug.
Vapers prefer to take more in a shorter amount of time since the benefits of vaping are short-lived. As a result, vaping cannot only deliver a buzz but also raise your chance of developing a nicotine addiction and possibly deadly difficulties with your respiratory system and lungs if used for an extended period.
Why Does Nicotine Stop Giving You A Buzz?
The first high from vaping may be strong, but frequent users may find that it fades just as rapidly. If you’ve built a tolerance to nicotine and your neuroreceptors are all filled, you won’t experience its stimulating effects. Nicotine intake regularly raises the probability that your body will adjust to its presence and develop a tolerance to it.
Consider it as if you had a sponge. If you soak a sponge in water but never squeeze it, it will never absorb any more liquid. Nicotine can only trigger a limited number of neuroreceptors in the brain. When you vape, you are constantly stimulating these brain areas with nicotine. The more nicotine you put in your vaporizer, the faster your receptors get saturated and the less of a buzz you experience from the substance. Nicotine receptors, which are important for dopamine release and nicotine buzz will always need some downtime to desaturate.
Risks Of Chasing The Buzz
Inhaling more smoke or vapor than you did before is a futile and perhaps dangerous effort to prolong the effects of a buzz. If your neurotransmitters are already overloaded, taking in more nicotine will not assist and will most likely make you sick when the symptoms of a nicotine overdose kicks in.
Furthermore, if you start seeking a nicotine buzz in this manner and don’t get it, it indicates that you’re getting addicted to nicotine. Nicotine use raises your chances of acquiring an addiction. And nicotine dependence, often known as nicotine addiction, develops when a person intentionally seeks out and increases their substance consumption in a bid to achieve a nicotine buzz. So if you chase the nicotine buzz, you will definitely develop an addiction to it.
Remember that nicotine has both energizing and soothing effects on the body. If you attempt to chase a buzz, you will wind up stimulating one sensation while deafening another. Some people who attempt to get high off nicotine often become addicts, since the substance is highly addictive.
What is Nicotine?
Nicotine is a naturally occurring chemical compound found in the leaves of the tobacco plant (Nicotiana tabacum) and in other plants of the Solanaceae family, such as tomatoes, potatoes, and eggplants. It is a powerful stimulant and the primary psychoactive substance in tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco.
Nicotine comes in various forms, primarily depending on the mode of administration. Here are some common types of nicotine products:
- Traditional cigarettes are the most common form of tobacco consumption. Nicotine is inhaled through the smoke produced by burning tobacco.
- Cigars contain tobacco, and nicotine is absorbed through the smoke when cigars are smoked.
- This includes products like chewing tobacco and snuff. Nicotine is absorbed through the oral mucosa when these products are used.
- Nicotine gum is a form of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) used to help people quit smoking. Nicotine is absorbed through the lining of the mouth.
- Another form of NRT, nicotine patches are worn on the skin to deliver a controlled amount of nicotine over time.
- Similar to nicotine gum, lozenges are a type of NRT that dissolves in the mouth, releasing nicotine.
Nicotine Nasal Spray:
- This is a prescription NRT that delivers nicotine through a nasal spray.
- NRT inhalers mimic the hand-to-mouth action of smoking and deliver nicotine vapor to be inhaled.
Electronic Cigarettes (E-cigarettes or Vapes):
- E-cigarettes are electronic devices that heat a liquid (often containing nicotine) to produce an aerosol, which is then inhaled.
- Some beverages, especially energy drinks, may contain added nicotine.
It’s important to note that while some of these products are used as aids for smoking cessation, all forms of nicotine carry health risks, and the addictive nature of nicotine can lead to dependence.
Here are some general guidelines for common nicotine products:
- The nicotine content in cigarettes varies, but on average, a single cigarette may contain around 1 to 2 milligrams of nicotine. However, the actual amount absorbed by the smoker can vary based on factors such as puffing intensity and duration.
- Chewing tobacco and snuff products come in various concentrations. Nicotine content is typically measured in milligrams per gram (mg/g) of tobacco. Users should follow product instructions for appropriate use.
- Nicotine gum typically comes in 2 mg and 4 mg strengths. The recommended dosage depends on the individual’s level of dependence and is often based on a quit plan. Chewing one piece of gum every 1 to 2 hours is a common starting point.
- Nicotine patches are available in various strengths, commonly ranging from 7 mg to 21 mg. The appropriate patch strength depends on the individual’s smoking habits. A patch is applied to the skin once a day.
- Nicotine lozenges are available in 2 mg and 4 mg strengths. The recommended dosage is typically one lozenge every 1 to 2 hours, depending on the individual’s level of dependence.
Nicotine Nasal Spray:
- Nicotine nasal spray is a prescription product. The dosage is determined by a healthcare professional based on the individual’s needs. It is sprayed into the nostrils as directed.
- Nicotine inhalers are prescription products. The recommended dosage is determined by a healthcare professional, and individuals inhale the vapor as needed.
Electronic Cigarettes (E-cigarettes):
- The nicotine content in e-cigarettes varies widely depending on the e-liquid. Nicotine concentrations are often measured in milligrams per milliliter (mg/ml). Users should follow product instructions and be aware of the nicotine content in the e-liquid.
Elevated Heart Rate:
- Nicotine stimulates the release of adrenaline, leading to a temporary increase in heart rate.
- Nicotine can enhance alertness and concentration, providing a short-term cognitive boost.
Feelings of Relaxation:
- Some users experience a sense of relaxation or stress relief during the nicotine buzz.
- Nicotine triggers the release of dopamine in the brain, contributing to improved mood temporarily.
- Nicotine may reduce appetite, leading to short-term weight loss or decreased desire to eat.
Enhanced Cognitive Performance:
- Users may perceive improved cognitive function, including better memory and attention.
- Nicotine can cause peripheral effects like tingling sensations, increased salivation, or heightened senses.
- Regular nicotine use can lead to physical dependence, characterized by withdrawal symptoms when not using.
- Over time, individuals may develop tolerance, requiring higher nicotine levels to achieve the same effects.
Addiction and Compulsive Use:
- Nicotine has a high addictive potential, leading to compulsive use despite awareness of health risks.
- Long-term use of nicotine is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems, including hypertension and heart disease.
- Smoking, a common method of nicotine intake, is linked to respiratory issues such as chronic bronchitis and lung diseases.
- Tobacco smoke contains carcinogens, increasing the risk of various cancers, including lung cancer.
Impact on Mental Health:
- Nicotine dependence is associated with an increased risk of mental health issues, including anxiety and depression.
- Sustaining a nicotine habit can result in significant financial costs over time.
- Smoking can lead to reduced physical fitness and endurance due to compromised lung function.
Social and Environmental Impact:
- Nicotine use, especially through smoking, has social and environmental consequences, affecting relationships and contributing to pollution.
It’s crucial to note that nicotine use, especially through tobacco products, poses serious health risks.
Negatives of Excessive Nicotine
Headaches are a typical side effect of excessive nicotine use. Nicotine causes cerebral arteries to constrict, limiting the volume of blood that may reach brain tissues. As a result, the quantity of glucose and oxygen reaching your brain is lowered, leading to severe headaches due to the pressures from the constricted blood vessels.
Additionally, one of the most evident side effects is weariness. It is a general belief that the intake of nicotine can improve alertness in the brain due to the release of adrenaline. When taken in excess, it can cause a feeling of tiredness and lack of energy. This is because, when taken in excess, nicotine can trigger the brain to release more beta-endorphin to alleviate pains and offer a sedating effect.
Positives of Quitting Nicotine
Quitting and Support: Quitting nicotine use is associated with significant health benefits, including reduced risks of various diseases. Support programs, counseling, and nicotine replacement therapies are available to help individuals quit smoking or using other tobacco products.
Seeking Treatment? We Can Help!
While the first high from vaping may be pleasurable, long-term usage may have catastrophic repercussions, including addiction. But with the right support, you can get through the withdrawal phases of addiction.
At California Prime Recovery, we help clients overcome drug and alcohol addictions, to mention a few. Our professional responsibility is to stay current on the most current drug news and trends so that we are always ready to assist anybody whose life has been negatively impacted by substance addiction. Contact us today if you need more information on how to begin the treatment and recovery process at 866-208-2390