Does Nicotine Pouches Cause Headaches?
Erik Rosengren - Snusexpert
13 February, 2024
5 Min

Does Nicotine Pouches Cause Headaches?

Nicotine pouches do not cause headaches when used properly. People often use these tobacco-free pouches as substitutes for cigarettes and snus. These pouches contain nicotine, which stimulates the reward center of your brain, releasing dopamine, adrenaline, and serotonin. 

Using excessive nicotine or pouches that exceed your tolerance level could overstimulate your brain and cause headaches. Other side effects of nicotine pouch overuse, include nausea, indigestion, and uneasiness. We'll look at how and why this happens, and what you can do to avoid it, 

The Relationship Between Nicotine and Headaches

Nicotine affects various parts of the brain, including the pre-frontal cortex. According, to research performed at Yale, nicotine may lower stress and pain by impacting dopamine levels. Other research has determined a slight correlation between nicotine and the parasympathetic nervous system.

Nicotine directly impacts your mood and perceived energy levels by stimulating your brain. Your brain goes into a trance like state of high activity when the nicotine activates your glands, increasing your cognitive abilities and functions. This is called a nicotine buzz.

When too much nicotine enters your system, it overstimulates your senses and brain. Nicotine also narrows your blood vessels, and when used in excess, these two effects combined can cause a headache. The reduced blood flow can also cause other problems, like increased heart disease and other problems. 

The Composition Of Nicotine Pouches

Here's a list of the things that a nicotine pouch contains:

  • Nicotine: Made synthetically or refined from tobacco. 
  • Filler: Usually Arabic gum to give the pouch more shape and size.
  • Sweetener: To give it flavor.
  • Humectant: To prevent moisture loss.
  • pH Regulators: To regulate the acidity of each pouch.

These are the most notable ingredients of a nicotine pouch. Out of all these ingredients, nicotine is the only ingredient that can directly create or induce a headache. However, compared to tobacco, this nicotine is much more pure and all-white.

Due to its refined form, nicotine pouches do not have as much of a correlation with headaches compared to other forms of nicotine. 

A man having a headache with the text "Studies and Research on Headaches From Nicotine"

Studies & Research On Headaches From Nicotine

Nicotine is a stimulant and a depressant, which means, it has a direct effect on your mood and brain. The impact of these effects varies according to the type of nicotine used, so let's look at their correlation with headaches. 

Nicotine Pouches and Headaches

Nicotine pouches do not cause headaches when used in moderation. Research on the link between nicotine pouches and headaches is limited, however. Since, the products have only recently gained popularity, it will take a few years for research on these products to surface. Nevertheless, an accidentally swallowed nicotine pouch or using too much nicotine can cause headaches. 

Cigarettes and Headaches

The link between smoking and headaches is very pronounced. According to research published in NCBI, tobacco could be linked to migraines and other forms of chronic illnesses. A single cigarette contains over 6000 toxic chemicals, which could cause numerous problems, including mood disorders.

Cluster headaches, which is a prolonged type of headache, are also common in smokers. That's why most people are advised to use Nicotine Replacement Therapy when quitting smoking. 

Vape, E-Cigs, and Headaches

Vapes use a liquid laced with nicotine, which passes through a filter, and is heated to produce smoke. Vapes are newer forms of nicotine, so research on the topic is limited. However, excessive vape usage can cause nausea, headache, uneasiness, and other gastrointestinal problems. 

Smokeless Tobacco Products and Headaches

Snus is perhaps one of the oldest forms of tobacco. Its pure tobacco mixed with spices and other ingredients, and works like nicotine pouches. According to research published in the NCBI by MAB Sarker, the toxicity of snus, and excessive smokeless tobacco use can cause headaches

Medical Perspectives on Nicotine Pouches and Headaches

According to prominent opinions from healthcare professionals, the use of nicotine products can cause headaches. While discussions about the impact of nicotine pouches vary, the consensus is that nicotine overdose can cause headaches.

At the same time, experts agree that nicotine withdrawal also leads to headaches. This phenomenon is also called nicotine headache, and is quite common among people who quit smoking. This happens because of your neural wiring, that gets modified because of long-term use.

When you quit smoking or other forms of tobacco, your neural wiring lacks the activation ingredients. A headache is one potential side effect of nicotine and smoking cessation. 

A man preventing headaches when using nicotine

How To Prevent Headaches From Nicotine Use

Since we've covered how nicotine causes headaches, let's talk about some potential solutions:

  1. Use NRT products to get rid of nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
  2. Consume amounts of nicotine pouches according to your tolerance levels.
  3. Never swallow a nicotine pouch.
  4. Never chew on a nicotine pouch. 
  5. Use an over-the-counter headache relieving medicine.
  6. Drink more fluids and eat nutritious fruits (avocados, bananas, figs, raspberries etc.).
  7. Do not drink alcohol when you have a headache.

Please learn how to use nicotine pouches the right way to avoid problems. 

Final Takeaway: Do Nicotine Pouches Cause Headaches?

The link between nicotine and headaches is clear; however, there is limited research on the use of nicotine pouches and their direct effects on headaches. Considering the effects of nicotine, we can infer that excessive nicotine use will contribute to headaches. 

In the same way, headache is a common side effect of nicotine withdrawal. Since, nicotine is addictive, when you stop using nicotine, it can cause various side effects. 

Use NRT products to reduce the severity of the side effects and eat nutritious food to keep your body healthy. You can use nicotine pouches that are tobacco free to keep your cravings at bay, while reducing the adverse effects. 

Certainly, we may also be wrong. Either way, our .com site offers a wider variety of products available to customers shopping from outsite of Europe, including a grand assortment of Swedish snus with tobacco.