A hookah is a water pipe that consists of one or more hoses for smoking, a pipe and a bowl to hold the tobacco. They come in many sizes and styles and are sold all over the world. Many people enjoy the leisure of smoking from a hookah because of its advantages over other types of smoking, but it does not come without its drawbacks. Consider both the pros and the cons of smoking from a hookah before you decide to give it a try.
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Risk of Cancer and Other Illnesses
The Mayo Clinic says that hookah smoking carries many of the same medical risks as cigarette smoking. Hookah smokers are at an increased risk for lung cancer, mouth cancer, heart disease and emphysema just as cigarette smokers are.
Nicotine is the addictive ingredient in cigarettes. While you may think you are avoiding this nasty substance by indulging in hookah smoke instead, this is not the case. According to the Mayo Clinic, hookah smoking contains about the same amount of nicotine smoke as cigarettes do, putting smokers at risk for tobacco dependence in much the same way as cigarette smoke.
Risk of Infectious Disease
While hookah smoking does not create a cold or virus, it can aid in passing them around. Dentistry IQ suggests that the ritual of passing the hose from person to person in social hookah settings such as bars or lounges puts people at a higher risk for infectious illnesses and even diseases like oral herpes. This risk can be minimized by using disposable plastic hookah tips.
Less Risk of Teeth Staining
While it may seem like hookah smoking doesn't have any benefits, this is not the case. Dentistry IQ reports that hookah smoking is much better for your oral health. Due to the differences in the way hookah tobacco, or shisha, is manufactured, it does not stain the teeth like cigarette smoke does. This makes it a more sensible alternative to cigarettes for those who are aiming for a whiter smile.
A Fresher Smell
Many people might agree that the smell of cigarette smoke is offensive, leaving people smelling like an ash tray. The tobacco used for hookah smoking is made with a combination of tobacco, sweetener and fruit, making for a much more pleasant scent than their rather smelly cigarette counterparts.