Taste Buds Shot?

Continuing the discussion from Anybody using Joy as a sweetener?:

So I know a lot of us here are ex-smokers so I got a question for ya. How long did it take for your taste buds to get better? 30+ years of heavy smoking have pretty much destroyed mine. I have been smoke free for a couple months now and they have improved some but nowhere near as good as my wife’s.

I can take a vape on a mix and tell ya if it’s fruity or creamy or spicy, and I can tell ya if it’s tasty or not, but I have a hard time distinguishing individual flavors. I can give the same mix to my wife and she can tell me exactly what’s in it, even complicated mixes. She is also an ex-smoker but she has been smoke free for a couple of years now and doesn’t remember how long it took for her taste buds to start working again.

I have made a single flavor mix of pretty much all of my flavors so I know what they taste like and that has helped a little in picking them out in a recipe.

Any tips on improving the taste buds? I gargle with listerine, something I never did before, and started using a tongue scraper. This seems to have helped but I hope they get a lot better. Hopefully I haven’t completely destroyed them.

I want to say it took about 6 months to really get back to where I felt like I could taste and smell like I used to. I still have allergy problems though so I’m not 100% up to snuff on most days anyway.

My biggest tip would be to drink lots of water. Make sure you are using non-alcoholic mouthwash. The alcohol in most mouthwash will dry out your mouth and can make things worse.


My mouth hygienist told me that you should never use listerine because it kills the flora in your mouth. Can’t be doing a lot of good to your tastebuds. It started it out as a cleaning product btw and I’m talking about floors not mouths. What helps me when I feel my taste has gone is to drink water with lemon juice in it, that usually clears it up.
I can’t tell you how long it took for the effects of smoking to subside. I only vape for about 7 months and I’ve been a long time smoker but the last of those years I had managed to cut down my smoking quite a bit. 6/7 a day usually. I’ve got chronic hyperventilation and had problems breathing at night after heavy smoking and if there is one thing I hate, it’s not getting enough air. So I cut down and stayed down until I quit and started vaping. I suppose the amount of time it takes is completely dependent on how long and how much you’ve smoked and other factors too. It will differ from person to person. Just like hearing and smelling are not the same in everybody. Some people can smell the faintest aroma while others have to hang over a barrel of shit to be able to get a whiff. Not much help here I suppose.


Good to know. Sounds like gargling may have hurt rather than help.

I do drink lots of water and have tried the lemon juice when I feel like the flavors are muted (vapors tongue) more than usual. It does help.

Good to know that they did come back for ya … only a few more months for me then. Should be good to go about Christmas time :slight_smile: … lol.

Thanks for the feedback!


Shaner, I can’t say I am 100% back to normal but in jan. will be 2 years not smoking an recently this summer I have been able to cut my flavor usage in half, I used to Have to have 20% or more in a juice in order to taste it. I am drawing that my taste buds are finally functioning at a higher level.

There are small tongue scrappers, I drink a ton of water, I get the zero calorie flavored water that sparkling as well and when I’m tired of that I put frozen fruit in the bottom of my tervis ( big cup) and pour fresh water w/ lemon or lime ( like josephine said ) and I drink that. I also think switching up flavors has done alot for me, if I bombard my tongue w/ the same flavor all day it will seem like I can not taste it after a while and so I don’t do this. The mouth is the fastest healing parts of our bodies ( hmmm well hurry up then !!! )

And while I do think " normal Flora " is important to have in our mouths and our guts. Its also very important to have clean dental hygiene listerine has been around a very long time. Use sparingly it does what its suppose to. If I get a sore throat it is one of the first things I gargle with cuts my sore throat time in half kill them bugs b4 they get to your lungs :wink: But I Do Not use it everyday…( sparingly / moderation )

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Thanks for the info Amy, I appreciate it! Glad to hear your taste buds have come back but I hope it doesn’t take mine 2 years … :worried:

I do the same thing, switching flavors. I always have several bottles with me and switch back and forth between them all day. If I vape to much of one mix the flavor pretty much completely disappears on me.


I’m getting close to 4 months cig free Shaner. I presented that question to my Dr., of which I can truly say that he knows his shit. Unfortunately the answer to that question is as subjective as tasting. He said we should notice an improvement at around six months but that it could take as long as three years to come back totally. He told me that’s it is critical while healing to avoid strong flavors. Okay doc…what are strong flavors? He went on to say that if something burns your tongue, avoid using it until you are fully healed and in moderation afterwards.

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Damn, that’s a long time … Oh well, at least it sounds like it does come back, that’s a good thing … and we are off the damn stinky cigarettes :smile:


At least they do heal over time. Unlike the damage we’ve done to our lungs. I accept consiquences of my actions. Smell on the other hand comes back much quicker.

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They came up with these air fresheners years ago that have 4 or 5 different fragrances and they automatically switch every 15 minutes because after a while you don’t notice the smell anymore. It’s the same with taste.

Good point Jose. I never thought of that but you are a hundred percent correct.

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[quote=“JohnZena, post:11, topic:28108”]
you are a hundred percent correct.
[/quote]O please, say that again! :grinning:


I started vaping 4 months ago. I got hooked on Beard 51 which is a vanilla custard with a hint of chocolate. Then 3 months ago I quit smoking after 35 years of a pack a day. (Thank you vaping!). After a week of no smoking, vape started tasting strange, then downright repulsive. Especially custards! Now just the smell of Beard 51 or any custard makes me want to puke. I’ve been doing DYI and can say for sure flavors with Acetoin are the source of the gross factor. It’s been over 2 months now and custards still repulse me, and there are very few commercial vapes that taste good to me. what I can taste is very limited and short lived. It is driving me mad! I don’t know how long this is going to last but it’s been months now with no real improvement. FYI food tastes fine, just vape I can’t taste.

Also from what I read about flavor fatigue (vapor’s tongue) it is not physical. It’s completely you’re brain getting overloaded with sensory input. Your taste buds regenerate every 2 weeks.

Anyone else in hell like me?

Can’t say I have this problem but have heard of others having problems with overloading the taste buds. I heard of suggestions of vaping No Flavor juice for a while to give those taste buds a break. My own thoughts I was thinking after a week or two slowly introduce drops of a flavored blend into the tank and see how it goes. Maybe you can reboot that way…

Acetoin/acetyl propionyl/diacetyl are yummy to me. Butyric acid I can detect easily, and I don’t like it…

Try vaping some unflavored for a while :smile:

Thanks for the replies.

Yes, I think vaping plain for a bit is the only action I can take. I’m vaping a very light 2mg btw. Sniffing coffee beans, sucking on lemons, drinking tons of water doesn’t help.

What’s really odd is vape tasted great until I quit smoking. :open_mouth:

And now it’s assumed to be bad for you as well so having a acute sense of Butyric Acid is a good thing…

Perhaps because anything would taste great with the taste of stinkies in your mouth. That’s my guess. Don’t fret though. Vaping No Flavor really is not the bad. I can not consistantly vape flavored EJuice because of allergies. Can’t do perfumes, incense, scented candles, etc. Unfortunately Constant use of flavored Ejuice effects me the same way. That basically means I for the most part vape No Flavor. It actually is not bad at all if you ask me…