What are nicotine pouches?
Nicotine pouches are a brand-new way to use nicotine. They contain no tobacco at all, but the pouches do contain nicotine which is extracted from a plant called the Nicotania tabacum which is a tobacco plant. As nicotine is a stimulant, when the nicotine pouch is placed under your upper lip, the nicotine is absorbed via the oral mucosa into the blood stream and transferred to the brain’s reward system. It is important to remember that they do contain nicotine, which is a highly addictive substance, and should therefore only be available for sale to those over 21 years of age.
Aside from nicotine, the pouches also contain a small amount of chewing gum base, flavors, sweeteners, pH adjusters and fillers. The pouches contain no sugar, but the sweeteners used are called Acesulfam K (E950) and is used in things that we eat and drink such as soft drinks, ice cream and juices.
The nicotine pouches are 100 % tobacco free but they do contain nicotine, which is derived from the tobacco plant. The Nicotania tabacum is a tobacco plant which stems from the potato family and other species in this family also contain nicotine, albeit in very small dose, such as potatoes and tomatoes. High doses of nicotine can sometime cause side effects such as shivers, palpitations and queasiness, much like how the body sometimes reacts to large amount of coffee or other high doses of other caffeine products.
As mentioned before, the nicotine pouch is placed under your upper lip and the nicotine is absorbed through your gum. This has caused people to wonder whether or not they cause gum disease. It is not unusual for adults to experience gum disease to some degree, and most people experience it at least once. Some side effects could be that your gums bleed when you brush your teeth, or you experience bad breath. The number one cause of gum disease is bad oral hygiene. If you do not brush your teeth regularly, plaque can accumulate and irritate your gum. The best way to protect your teeth and gum is to brush your teeth, preferably twice a day, and to floss regularly. It is also recommended that you visit the dentist habitually and to routinely ask for professional teeth cleaning.
As the nicotine pouches are still a relatively new product, there is not a lot of long-term studies available on how they affect the gum. We highly recommend that you discuss any queries with your dentist or doctor as we are not able to give health related advice on the matter.