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Hookah vs. Cigarettes: Is Smoking Hookah Safer for Your Mouth?

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olds dentist olivia cui explain is hookah smoking safer than smoking cigarettes

hookah vs cigarettes smoking

It may surprise you to learn that as many as 20% of college students have smoked a hookah, or water pipe. Although the number of persons smoking cigarettes has decreased recently, the popularity of hookah smoking has increased—possibly due to the belief held by some that it is healthier for the mouth than cigarettes. Sadly, this is untrue, as smoking a hookah is linked to several dental and general health issues. Continue reading to learn more so you can determine if you should refrain from smoking hookahs in the future.

What Are Hookahs?

A hookah is a water pipe that is connected to a smoke chamber, bowl, piper, hose, and mouthpiece. It is also referred to as a shisha or narghile. After being heated, specially prepared tobacco smokes its way through the water pot and into the mouthpiece and hose for inhalation.

The tobacco is available in a variety of tastes, including spiced chai, mint, and strawberry. Usually, there are no restrictions on the amount of nicotine present in this tobacco.

Hookahs vs. Cigarettes

Smokers may think that smoking a hookah is healthier than smoking cigarettes since hookah tobacco is flavored, unlike cigarettes, or at the very least, hookahs contain less of the harmful substance or nicotine. Nonetheless, nicotine—the same addictive chemical found in cigarettes—is delivered via hookahs in a very real way.

In fact, due to the way a hookah is used, smokers may receive more harmful nicotine from them than from cigarettes. This is so that the smoker can have between 50 and 200 puffs during an 80-minute waterpipe session. The American Dental Association’s MouthHealthy notes that smoking a cigarette typically takes five to seventy-five minutes, with forty to seventy-five puffs.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also note that 90,000 cc of smoke is consumed during a single hookah session. 500–600 cc of smoke are inhaled during a single cigarette.

Are Hookahs Better for Your Mouth?

Now that we know that hookahs are unhealthy, let’s talk about the potential harm they could do to your oral health. Gum disease, oral cancer, esophageal cancer, and dry sockets are linked to hookah smoking.

The oral health issues that come with smoking a hookah are comparable to those that come with smoking cigarettes. Examples include stained teeth, foul breath, and delayed healing following tooth extractions.

Furthermore, smoking a hookah can have an impact on your general health. It may result in the following issues:

  • Heightened risk of stomach and lung cancer
  • Decreased capacity of the lungs
  • Decreased male and female fertility
  • Elevated risk of heart disease and stroke
  • Sharing the hookah’s mouthpiece increases the chance of spreading herpes or TB

It is strongly advised that you give up smoking hookah if you’re concerned about how it may affect your general health or oral health. The benefits would be greater still if you didn’t start it in the first place. Consulting with experts such as Olds dentist Dr. Olivia Cui or your doctor might be very helpful in this area. They are qualified to direct you to the resources you need to stop smoking or educate you about the possible health hazards of using a hookah.

Is hookah smoking safer than smoking cigarettes?

A water pipe is called a hookah. Its primary components are a water bowl, a pipe, a hose, and a smoke chamber. A hookah is also known by the terms goza, maassel, shisha, and narghile.

In a hookah, the tobacco is frequently flavored. When someone lights a hookah, charcoal heats the tobacco. The tobacco is burned by the charcoal and the smoke is drawn into the water basin. To breathe in, a person needs a mouthpiece. The smoke travels via a rubber tube that finishes in the mouthpiece and the water.

The tobacco found in cigarettes and hookah pipes is equally poisonous. The hookah’s water cools the smoke, but it doesn’t remove the toxins from it. Smokers who use hookahs might inhale more tobacco smoke than those who consume cigarettes. This is due to the fact that a single hookah smoking session may endure up to an hour.

Several risks can arise from using a hookah:

Hookah smoke contains a lot of dangerous substances. These include carcinogens—substances that cause cancer—tar, carbon monoxide, heavy metals, and others. In actuality, smokers of hookahs are more exposed to smoke and carbon monoxide than smokers of cigarettes.

Similar to smoking cigarettes, using a hookah is associated with:

  • Malignancies of the mouth, throat, stomach, esophagus, and lungs.
  • Heart conditions.
  • Further severe illnesses, like carbon monoxide poisoning and lung disorders.

Similar to smoking cigarettes, using a hookah produces high amounts of nicotine. The tobacco’s habit-forming ingredient, nicotine, is what keeps smokers going.

There are risks associated with secondhand smoke from hookahs. Pregnant women who smoke hookah have been connected to low birth weight kids.

It is dangerous to share a pipe with other smokers or to use an unclean pipe. It may increase your risk of contracting an illness like:

  • The illness.
  • TB.
  • Herpes.
  • Hepatitis.
  • COVID-19.

Olds dentist Dr. Olivia Cui cautions against using electronic hookahs, often known as e-hookahs, which are vaping devices. These gadgets function by using a battery to heat a liquid, creating vapor that users inhale. The beverage is available without nicotine and in a variety of flavors. While research on e-hookahs’ long-term health impacts is ongoing, most people believe using vaping devices—including e-hookahs—to be dangerous. It’s also critical to remember that tobacco use in any form is not safe.


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