Hookah smoking has recently become very fashionable among young people. This is a whole ritual that attracts with its unusualness. Hookah is smoked most often in bars or restaurants, the surroundings and atmosphere of which make the smoker feel that through smoking he joins the ancient culture. Among hookah lovers, it is often believed that it is absolutely safe for health, and certainly not more harmful than regular cigarettes. Doctors have an opposite opinion on this, so before choosing a hookah or cigarettes, you need to know exactly what is hidden behind a beautiful hookah smoking ritual.
What guides hookah lovers
Those who consider the hookah to be almost harmless give some reasons to confirm their opinion. The main one is that smoke when smoking a hookah, passing through a flask with a liquid, is cleared of most harmful impurities. Everyone knows that the most dangerous when smoking cigarettes is precisely tobacco smoke, because it contains many carcinogens and other harmful substances.
It is logical to assume that if this smoke is purified by water, the concentration of these substances in it will be lower, which means that there will be less harm. It is this conviction that guides those who opt for a hookah instead of cigarettes.
Why is hookah still harmful
It is difficult to argue that a water filter cleans smoke from impurities. Indeed, a large proportion of nicotine and dangerous resins is retained in water. However, this does not make the hookah useful. If a person makes no more than 10 puffs while smoking a regular cigarette, then smoking a hookah lasts from 20 minutes to an hour, and during this time a person inhales a lot more tobacco smoke. Although this smoke is not so saturated with harmful substances, but taking into account the number of puffs, a person receives much more carcinogens and resins in one smoking of a hookah than when smoking one cigarette. In terms of regular cigarettes, hookah smoking is equated to a minimum of a pack. In addition, the smoke itself penetrates much deeper into the lungs than with regular smoking. There are 2 reasons for this:
- to take a puff through a hookah, you need to inhale stronger and deeper than when smoking a cigarette;
- smoke passing through the liquid cools and is inhaled much more easily, which means it penetrates deeper.
Another critical point is the quality of the tobacco itself. The production of cigarettes is more strictly controlled than the production of smoking mixtures for hookahs. The most harmless option is if low-quality and poorly purified tobacco was used to make such a mixture, in the worst case, forbidden and very harmful substances can be present in the tobacco mixture. In any case, hookah smokers can never know exactly the content of nicotine and other substances in the mixture that they smoke, and such smoking is obviously much more harmful.
In addition to harmful smoke, hookah has another minus. In the overwhelming majority of cases, hookah smoking occurs in a large company in public places. The flask and mouthpiece in such establishments undergo the most usual processing, but meanwhile, Koch’s bacillus or hepatitis A virus die only when disinfected with chlorine or alcohol. This means that through smoking hookah you can become infected with a dangerous disease.
If we compare the effects of hookah and cigarettes on the body, we can conclude that hookah is still more harmful. When smoking, a person inhales much more harmful substances, and they settle in the lungs much deeper. In addition to poisoning the body with tobacco smoke, smoking a hookah is associated with a risk of contracting tuberculosis or hepatitis A. A hookah is not a safe alternative to smoking: it also leads to the formation of nicotine addiction and is harmful to health. In addition to nicotine addiction, a great psychological dependence appears on hookah. According to subjective feelings, smoking a hookah is more pleasant, which is why teenagers are most likely to get involved in it. The presence of the company and the unusualness of the process itself also cause positive emotions. As a result, smoking a hookah becomes regular, and the devastating consequences from it occur much faster than from smoking cigarettes.