Nicotine pouches are getting popular as a safer alternative to smoking and vaping, but they do come with some side effects. The most annoying, albeit not that dangerous, are hiccups. 

These involuntary contractions of the diaphragm can be a nuisance and make the nicopod sessions less enjoyable. To help you enjoy your nicopods in peace, we will explore the causes of nicotine pouch hiccups and provide tips on how to prevent them. 

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Why Do Nicotine Pouches Cause Hiccups?

Nicotine is a central nervous system stimulant. When absorbed through the inner lining of the mouth, nicotine can stimulate the phrenic nerve, which can lead to repetitive contractions (spasms) of the diaphragm, resulting in hiccups. These contractions lead to a rapid intake of air, after which the vocal cords snap shut, producing the distinctive “hic” sound. 

Other potential reasons nicotine pouches may cause hiccups are:

  • Reflex stimulation of the vagus nerve—Nicotine can irritate the vagus nerve, the cranial nerve controlling swallowing and breathing, leading to hiccups
  • Nicotine overdose—High nicotine levels can overstimulate the nerves, causing hiccups. This is more likely to occur in individuals who consume more potent products than they are used to

Are Hiccups From Nicopods a Common Occurrence?

Most nicopod users experience hiccups at some point. That doesn’t mean that everyone will experience hiccups while using nicopods as the reaction to nicotine varies significantly from person to person. 

Based on data from the article published by Oxford University Press in 2021, we can extrapolate that using nicopods in controlled doses rarely (if ever) causes hiccups. 

A study from the FDA Adverse Event Reporting System (FAERS) found that hiccups linked to nicotine pouches are pretty rare. When they do happen, they are usually short-lived and resolve on their own. In most cases, hiccups from nicotine pouches are not a cause of concern. 

How Hiccups Affect Your Nicopod Sessions

Source: ZYN

Hiccups can disrupt your nicotine pouch session, but they do not impact the product’s effectiveness. The hiccups usually disappear after a few minutes, and once they subside, you can continue using nicopods as you normally would. 

A few ways in which hiccups can affect your experience include: 

  • Discomfort—Hiccups can be uncomfortable and distracting, causing you to focus more on relieving them than enjoying your pouch. They can also cause a burning sensation or irritation in the throat 
  • Product waste—You may be forced to take out your pouch prematurely to stop the hiccups, wasting a perfectly good nicopod
  • Reduced nicotine absorption—If hiccups occur shortly after you insert the pouch, the pouch might not maintain adequate contact with your gum long enough for you to absorb the nicotine fully

How To Stop Hiccups While Using Nicopods

If you experience hiccups while using nicotine pouches, remove the nicopod from your mouth, then try the techniques outlined in the table below.

Breathing TechniquesEating and Drinking Techniques
Breathe into a paper bag to increase carbon dioxide levels in the blood and relax the diaphragm
 
Hold your breath for about 10 seconds, then slowly exhale. Repeat this several times or until the hiccups stop

While seated, bring the knees close to your chest and hug them to stretch and relax the diaphragm

Gently lean forward to compress the chest and put pressure on the diaphragm

Take one deep breath, and then, without exhaling, take two smaller breaths to “reset” the vagus nerve
Gargle ice-cold water for about 30 seconds to stimulate the vagus nerve

Slowly sip cold water

Place a pinch of table sugar on the tongue and swallow it

Bite into a lemon or lime wedge and suck on it for a few seconds

If the above methods don’t work, you can stimulate pressure points to relieve hiccups. Pressure points are areas of the body that, when stimulated, can help relax the diaphragm and stop hiccups. Here’s how you can do this: 

  • Gently pull on the tongue to stimulate the vagus nerve
  • While swallowing, apply gentle pressure on each side of the nose (slightly below the bridge) to stimulate the phrenic nerve
  • Place two fingers below the sternum and press the diaphragm lightly

Source: Nigel Msipa 

How To Prevent Hiccups While Using Nicotine Pouches

These tips will help prevent hiccups while using nicotine pouches:

  1. Start with a mild nicopod—Hiccups might occur when you use stronger products than your body is used to. High nicotine levels can overstimulate your central nervous system, potentially leading to hiccups. It’s best to start with a lower-strength nicotine pouch and observe your body’s reaction before trying a more potent one 
  2. Take breaks between pouches—Give your body enough time to metabolize nicotine before using another nicopod. When you use pouches back to back, nicotine levels rise quickly, increasing the likelihood of hiccups
  3. Stay hydrated—Drinking water throughout the day can help keep hiccups at bay. Nicotine has a dehydrating effect on the body, and if combined with alcohol or spicy foods, it is more likely to cause hiccups
  4. Avoid using pouches on an empty stomach—Nicotine can upset your stomach, and if you haven’t eaten that day, it might cause hiccups. It’s always a good idea to grab a snack or eat a light meal before you use nicotine pouches
  5. Practice relaxation techniques—Stress and anxiety can trigger hiccups, so it’s essential to find ways to relax. Meditation, yoga, or breathing exercises can help keep your body and mind relaxed, reducing the likelihood of hiccups
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When To Consult a Doctor

Source: cottonbro studio 

Consult a doctor If you experience hiccups for more than 48 hours. Prolonged hiccups can signify an underlying medical condition such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), gastrointestinal issues, or neurological disorders.

They can also come from: 

  1. Peptic ulcers
  2. Pancreatitis
  3. Hepatitis

You should see a doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms alongside hiccups:

  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite

Remember, you can only consume nicotine pouches if you’re above 21 years of age. If you have never used nicopods before, it would be best to avoid them. Nicopods are also not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women and individuals with underlying cardiovascular conditions

For a pleasant experience and minimal side effects, ensure you consume high-quality products containing food-grade ingredients

SnusBoss—Your Reliable Supplier of Quality Nicotine Pouches

SnusBoss offers premium nicopods from leading EU manufacturers at competitive prices—especially if you buy in bulk. 

Why from the EU, you wonder? Ever since the FDA classified nicotine pouches as smokeless tobacco products in 2016, their development has been halted. Meanwhile, Europeans had seven years to perfect their products, resulting in nicopods with higher moisture levels, hundreds of different flavors, and a more intense nicotine kick than American products. 

Check out this fantastic brand lineup handpicked by a team of industry experts:

ZYNDopeKozmoJägerKick
VeloKlintPabloOryxSiberia
KillaSkrufKurwaPikRoger
White FoxThunderChapoDenssiPaz
HitSnatchGOATGlitchThor

To order from SnusBoss:

  1. Visit the online store
  2. Choose your preferred brand, strength, and flavor
  3. Fill out your shipping and payment details

Select express shipping if you want the package at your doorstep within 2–3 days. SnusBoss also offers regular promotions and free delivery for bulk orders above $249.

Other Potential Side Effects of Nicotine Pouches

Source: Mehrpouya H

Besides hiccups, other side effects that you may experience when using nicotine pouches include:

Note that these side effects don’t always happen, and their intensity varies depending on individual differences. Factors such as nicopod strength, frequency of use, and personal tolerance levels will influence their severity.

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How To Use Nicotine Pouches Responsibly and Minimize Side Effects

Nicopods are generally safe, but paying attention to your body’s reactions and adjusting your nicotine intake accordingly are the only correct ways to keep side effects at bay. Here’s what to do:

Keep in mind that nicotine is highly addictive and can result in uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms should you decide to stop using nicotine pouches abruptly. If you want to quit nicotine, the following FDA-approved Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) methods can help:

NRT MethodDescription
Nicotine gumA chewing gum that releases nicotine. It comes in different strengths, and you can gradually reduce the strength as you wean off nicotine
Nicotine patchesTransdermal patches that deliver controlled amounts of nicotine through the skin, reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms
Nicotine lozengesSmall tablets that dissolve in your mouth, releasing nicotine 
Nicotine inhalersDevices that simulate smoking by delivering a vapor infused with nicotine to your mouth and throat
Nicotine nasal spraysA pump bottle that delivers a fine mist of nicotine to your nasal passages, providing immediate relief from intense cravings

Talk to your doctor about the best NRT method for you, and follow a personalized plan to quit nicotine safely. You can also check out BeTobaccoFree.gov and Smokefree.gov for additional resources and support in quitting nicotine.

Featured image source: cottonbro studio

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