You’ve probably heard a lot about electronic cigarettes in the past few years because these devices have become extremely popular among former smokers and the number of users is growing exponentially. Ecigs are battery powered devices that heat up a nicotine mixture called e-liquid and transform it into rich clouds of vapor, mimicking the sensation of smoking but without all of the hazardous effects on your health. With no actual smoke there’s no ash and no carcinogens, therefore ecigs have always been considered the healthier alternative to get your daily nicotine fix.
I’m sure you’re friends are using them, I’m sure you’ve seen a lot of people enjoying them in pubs or restaurants and in many of the places that analog cigarettes are forbidden so you decided to do some research and bought your first disposable or starter kit. But surprise, you took one puff and started coughing so badly. You took another one and the problem persists. You even tried a different brand and still the coughing when using electronic cigarettes doesn’t go away, so you might ask yourself ‘what is wrong with me?’
The first thing you need to do is to keep calm and do not panic. You’re not the only one with this problem and there are several possible explanations for your coughing jags, which will fortunately subside with time or a few adjustments.
Different throat hit is one of the possible factors. Throat hit is the mild irritation sensation a vaper gets when inhaling vapor from an ecig. Many feel this is what helps ecigs to replicate the sensation of smoking. There are a number of things that influence throat hit, nicotine content being the primary factor. Other factors include the mix of PG and VG in the eliquid as well as the hardware used and the wattage/voltage applied. When using an e cigarette for the first time, the sensation is different than with a regular cigarette and can produce a real shock to your system. Your lungs and body will eventually get used to it, but for the first few puffs it will treat is a foreign substance and try to expel it by coughing. Going for smaller nicotine content and taking shallow hits will definitely improve this feeling.
The feeling of dehydration can also cause your coughing. The PG in electronic cigarettes can have a drying effect on the soft tissues of the mouth and throat and this can be for a few days or for longer periods of time. The solution is to drink lots of water throughout the day and always keep hydrated. Also try to avoid nicotine rich beverages as they will make the sensation more intense.
Sensitivity to PG can also make you cough. Although they are rare, some people get mild irritations when in contact with this substance. The solution in this case is to go for ecig brands that don’t use PG but rather have a VG base.
A small drip tip attached to your ecigarette could also help you get rid of the coughing because some ex-smokers are used to the flexible small filter of analog cigarettes and they are not used to inhaling from ecigs.
Also, if you have just quit smoking it’s possible that your body started cleaning up the lungs from all the tar and mucus so you might need a few days or weeks to adjust.
The thing you need to have in mind is that most of these symptoms are temporary and will go away by themselves in time so there’s no reason to panic.