Why Smoking Shisha Is Worse Than Smoking Cigarettes

Posted On:2016-07-09    Category: Drug Abuse & Alcoholism
Why Smoking Shisha Is Worse Than Smoking Cigarettes


Smoking shisha has become a trend among young people today. Many young adults gather in shisha spots including pubs and share the pipe between friends. Most think smoking shisha as a pleasant and relaxing experience and according to a recent study  44% of them believe smoking shisha is less harmful than smoking cigarettes.  But here’s the shocking truth – research shows that smoking shisha tobacco is actually more harmful than smoking cigarettes.

Many people wrongly believe that bubbling tobacco smoke through water makes it safe. In the 15th century a physician called Hakim Abu Faith wanted to make smoking shisha safer. He thought that if  tobacco smoke is passed through a filter it would be safer, so he came up with a small receptacle of water that smoke could pass through. However, modern research states that filtering tobacco smoke through cold water does not make it any safer.

This outdated belief from the  15th century  combined with the exotic looking waterpipes and a combination of sweet smelling tobaccos, honey molasses and dried fruit, along with deceptive advertising and a lack of information to educate people about the effects of smoking shisha, has led young people into believing that smoking shisha is harmless. While, on the other hand, there is widespread awareness about the dangers of smoking cigarettes. It’s no wonder that young people have been conned into believing that smoking shisha is a safer alternative to smoking cigarettes.

 Risks When Smoking shisha:
Those Who smoke shisha often inhale more smoke than cigarette smokers because of the length of time a shisha session lasts. A single session can last up to an hour during which shisha smokers will inhale a large amount of tobacco smoke as well as the second-hand smoke of others. A report from The World Health Organization (WHO) noted that the smoke inhaled in a typical one-hour hookah session can equal 100 cigarettes or more. The WHO report also claims that even after it has been passed through water, shisha tobacco smoke still contains high levels of cancer-causing chemicals. Shisha smoke may also contain combusted charcoal or wood which can increase the chemicals in the smoke that cause cancer and heart disease.

Shisha tobacco smoke contain the following:

1. Shisha contains more carbon monoxide.

Shisha contains 15 times more carbon monoxide (CO) than  that from cigarettes. CO replaces oxygen on red blood cells, making it harder for the body to
deliver oxygen to vital organs which can later lead to organ damage.

2. Shisha smoking has cancer causing substance.

Smoking Shisha contains significant amounts of nicotine, levels of costic compounds such as tar, carbon monoxide (car exhaust), heavy metals like cobalt, and lead; and a host of cancer causing chemicals.

3.  Prone to Addiction.

Shisha smoking produces similar increased blood nicotine levels and heart rate as cigarette use. The inhaled substances trigger chemical reactions in nerve endings, this release dopamine; which is associated with the feeling of pleasure. This seems to play an important role in nicotine addiction. A Shisha smoker is still smoking tobacco and the nicotine in it causes dependence after using it for several times.

4.  Charcoal in Shisha increased the risk of diseases.

Unlike cigarettes, Shisha smoke may also contain charcoal or wood cinder combustion products from the heat source used to burn the tobacco, increasing the cancer-causing agents in the smoke. Apart from the harmful effect of the chemical, the end product produced by the charcoal only intensifies the damage it can cause to the body.

5. Damaged different body organs.

Shisha smoke is associated with increased risk of disease including cancer, heart disease, lung disease and many other deadly ailments. It might not be noticeable now but the harmful chemicals are already slowly damaging certain parts of the body of a Shisha user.

6. Shisha delivers more smoke in the body.

Of concern, smokers of water pipes may be exposed to even more smoke than cigarette smokers because water pipe smoking sessions last from 20-80 minutes during which a smoker may inhale as much smoke as that from 100 or more cigarettes. This only magnified and multiplied the effects of smoking Shisha.

7.  Shisha has a flavoured tobacco.

The most common form of tobacco smoked in a water pipe is called Maassel, which is sweetened and flavored in such flavors as apple, mint, cappuccino, etc.

8. More rampant in some counties.

Shisha water pipes are most common in areas of China, India, Pakistan, and the Eastern Mediterranean Region, as well as United States. Also to be noted, that Shisha outlet had been showing up like mushroom in different parts of the globe today.

9. Shisha has adverse effects during pregnancy.

Pregnant women smoking a Shisha are putting their unborn child at great risk for low birth weight and other birthing problems.

10. Shisha can spread infectious diseases.

If the shisha pipe is not properly cleaned, sharing it with others can increase the risk of contracting diseases, such as tuberculosis, hepatitis, meningitis and other infectious diseases


.NB: There is a widespread misperception that Shisha smoking is safe, smoking shisha involves smoking for a longer period of time, inhaling higher levels of toxins deeper into the lungs and also sharing the waterpipe, there is no doubt that smoking shisha is not just as dangerous as smoking cigarettes  but worse. Evidence suggests that smoking Shisha waterpipes and being exposed to second-hand smoke from water pipes are associated with a high degree of health risk, including cancer risk.. Generally, people know little about its health effects and believe that it is less harmful than cigarette smoking.