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Shisha: safer than cigarettes?

Let's debunk shisha myths!

What is Shisha?

Shisha, also known as hookah or narghile, is a water pipe in which a mixture of tobacco and flavourings is smoked. Smoking shisha involves the burning of wood, coal or charcoal which heats up the tobacco and produces smoke. The smoke bubbles through a water-filled chamber and into a pipe and is then inhaled by the user.

This method of smoking is traditionally used in the Middle East and has become increasingly popular in the UK in recent years.

Is Shisha safer than cigarettes?

Smoking Shisha is not safer than cigarettes. It is just as unhealthy and potentially worse!

A shisha smoker can inhale many of the same toxins and cancer-causing substances as cigarette smokers. According to the World Health Organisation, the volume of smoke inhaled in a typical shisha session (approx. 1 hour) is equivalent to smoking between 100 and 200 cigarettes!

Like cigarette smokers, shisha smokers are at risk of developing heart and circulatory diseases, cancers, respiratory diseases, nicotine addiction, and problems during pregnancy.

What are the health risks?

7 out of 10 cases of lung cancer are caused by smoking. It also causes cancer in many parts of the body including the throat, mouth and stomach.

Smoking damages your heart and circulatory system, increasing the risks of heart disease, heart attack and stroke.

Smoking damages the lungs and causes chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

If you smoke during pregnancy there is an increased risk of miscarriage, premature birth and stillbirth.

Breathing in second-hand smoke is just as dangerous and carries the risk of developing the same health conditions as smokers.

Shisha Myth Busting

Shisha isn’t addictive. This is incorrect. Shisha is addictive. It usually uses tobacco which contains nicotine, and that’s what makes it addictive.

What about tobacco-free shisha? Even if you use tobacco-free shisha, you’re still at risk from high levels of carbon monoxide, tar and other toxins.

The water filters out the bad stuff. The water does not filter out the harmful toxins. Tar and other chemicals still pass through the water.

The smoke feels smoother. The cool smoke from the shisha is less irritating to smoke but it still carries the same risks as cigarette smoking.

How can One You Surrey Help?

Quitting smoking is the best decision you can make for your health. If you smoke and you want to quit, you are not alone. In fact, with specialist support, you’re three times more likely to quit for good. We’ll be with you every step of the way. Using tried and tested, scientifically and psychologically proven methods to help you quit. We’re confident we can help you, that’s why we’re the experts after all.


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