Hookah has become a popular form of intoxicant today and more and more youngsters are becoming addicted to it, without realizing the baneful effects it has on their health. It was a symbol of nobility in earlier times, when people of the upper class used to smoke hookah but now you would find them at a lot of places. Hookah is made of a bowl filled with tobacco, with a smoke chamber that has a long rubber hose through which the smoke passes. Many times, the tobacco used in a hookah is flavored, which makes it all the more addictive. Hookah culture involves a group of people smoking from the same hookah, sharing the same mouthpiece.
While some people may advocate that the water in the hookah filters the toxic substances in the nicotine smoke, it is actually not the same as the tobacco smoke from a hookah is as harmful as that of a cigarette. Rather, hookah can be adverse as compared to a cigarette because a single hookah session can last for an hour, which means that more smoke is inhaled in this longer time span. Though the popularity of hookah amongst the young crowds has increased on a global scale, it is important for the youth to realize how this addiction can harm them in the long run and lead to decline in the quality of their health.
Here are the imminent dangers related to hookah smoking:
#1. Hookah smoke abounds in toxic chemicals such as carbon monoxide, tar, heavy metals and carcinogens, the latter being the chemicals which result in cancer. It is a proven fact that the exposure to carbon monoxide is more in case of hookah smokers rather than cigarette smokers. This makes hookah smokers susceptible t the cancers of lungs and mouth.
#2. Hookah smokers are at a greater risk of developing a large number of disease, heart disease being one of the most life threatening amongst them. These people are also prone to respiratory ailments as well as periodontal diseases.
#3. Tobacco dependence is another situation which may arise for regular hookah smokers as hookah delivers the same, and even greater amount of nicotine to the smoker and he may end up being addicted to it.
#4. In addition to active smoking from the hookah, another disadvantage related to hookah smoking is that of passive smoking which harms the people around.. Pregnant women, in particular, are at greater danger as the hookah smoke, inhaled actively or passively elevate the risk of the baby having a low birth weight.
#5. A typical hookah session lasts for an hour and has the person taking as many as 200 puffs, which equates with smoking 10 cigarettes, as each one of it carries 20 puffs. The volume of smoke thus inhaled with a hookah is by far much greater than that in case of a cigarette smoker.
#6. Another major health hazard related with smoking hookah is that it can lead to spread of different types of infection as a large number of people share the same mouthpiece while smoking a hookah. The infection may spread from one person to another through oral contact with the hookah mouthpiece.
All these implications present severe perils to the health of the hookah smokers and give enough reasons for a prudent person to avoid from falling prey to this addiction.
What people should know about hookah addiction?
When it comes to hookah smoking, a lot of myths have to be broken as many people consider it as a rather less harmful form of tobacco addiction. The key lies in educating the young people and creating awareness in them regarding the health hazards of tobacco smoking. One of the efforts which has already made in this regard is issuing health warnings on the tobacco labels as well as along with advertisements of the related products. Misleading claims about hookah smoking being harmless, should be prohibited at all levels. Children and pregnant women need to be protected from the imminent dangers of passive smoking because they have to suffer because of no fault of their own. Also, people should be aware about hygiene when it comes to sharing hookah mouthpieces with others.
Some cohesive efforts of authorities and hookah smokers can go a long way in reducing the danger level of hookah smoking.