Smoking hookah is a widespread social activity among young and old people alike. While some people believe that hookah is less harmful than cigarettes, it can still have adverse effects on your health if consumed excessively or at an early age. So, how old is too old for hookah? Let’s discover the answer to this question in this article.
What is hookah?
Hookah, also known as shisha, is a smoking device that uses water to filter and cool down tobacco smoke. The device consists of a bowl that holds flavored tobacco, a stem with a hose, and a water container. The tobacco is heated with charcoal, and the smoke travels through the water before reaching the smoker’s mouth.
Is smoking hookah harmful to your health?
Yes, smoking hookah is harmful to your health. It can increase the risk of lung cancer, respiratory diseases, and heart problems. One session of hookah smoking can expose the smoker to more toxic chemicals than a single cigarette. Moreover, hookah smoke contains high levels of carbon monoxide, which can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.
How old do you have to be to do hookah?
The legal age for smoking hookah varies from one country to another. In the United States, for example, the legal age for smoking hookah is 18 years old or above. However, some states have raised the age limit to 21 years old, like California, Hawaii, New Jersey, and Oregon.
What are the risks of smoking hookah at an early age?
Smoking hookah at an early age can have severe consequences on your health. The younger you start smoking, the more likely you are to become addicted to nicotine, which can lead to long-term health problems like lung cancer and heart diseases. Moreover, smoking hookah increases the risk of infectious diseases like tuberculosis and hepatitis.
Is smoking hookah less harmful than smoking cigarettes?
No, smoking hookah is not less harmful than smoking cigarettes. While hookah smoke contains less nicotine than cigarette smoke, it contains higher levels of carbon monoxide and other toxic chemicals. Also, unlike cigarettes, hookah smoking involves a longer smoking session, resulting in higher exposure to harmful substances.
How often should you smoke hookah?
It is recommended to smoke hookah no more than once a week, and the session should not exceed 60 minutes. Smoking hookah more than once a week or for extended periods can increase the risk of health problems and addiction.
Can smoking hookah affect fertility?
Yes, smoking hookah can affect fertility in both men and women. The toxic chemicals in hookah smoke can damage the sperm and eggs, leading to infertility or birth defects in children. Moreover, smoking hookah during pregnancy can harm the fetus and increase the risk of low birth weight and neonatal mortality.
How long does a hookah session last?
A hookah session can last between 30 to 60 minutes, depending on the size of the bowl and the number of smokers. The bowl can hold up to 25 grams of tobacco, which is enough for a two-hour session. However, smoking a hookah for more than an hour can increase the amount of smoke and harmful chemicals in your lungs.
What are the signs of hookah addiction?
Hookah addiction can be characterized by the following signs:
- Increased tolerance to hookah smoking
- Withdrawal symptoms like irritability, anxiety, and headaches
- Craving for hookah smoking
- Difficulty in quitting smoking
What are the long-term effects of smoking hookah?
The long-term effects of smoking hookah can include:
- Increased risk of lung cancer
- Respiratory diseases like chronic bronchitis and emphysema
- Heart problems like high blood pressure and heart disease
- Reduced lung function
- Infertility and birth defects
- Addiction to nicotine
How can you reduce the harm of smoking hookah?
You can reduce the harm of smoking hookah by:
- Smoking hookah less frequently
- Choosing a low-nicotine tobacco brand
- Using natural charcoal instead of quick-light charcoals
- Using a smaller bowl to reduce the amount of tobacco used
- Sitting in a well-ventilated area to reduce secondhand smoke exposure
Although hookah smoking is a social and cultural activity, it can have severe health consequences. It is essential to limit the frequency and duration of hookah sessions and start smoking at the legal age. By adopting healthy habits and reducing harmful practices, we can protect our health and well-being.
Most common questions and their answers related to the topic ‘How old is too old for hookah?’
- Q: Can you smoke hookah at 16?
- A: No, the legal age for smoking hookah in most countries is 18 or above.
- Q: Can smoking hookah make you high?
- A: No, smoking hookah does not make you high. The nicotine in hookah tobacco can cause a slight buzz, but it does not alter your mental state.
- Q: Can you smoke hookah while pregnant?
- A: No, smoking hookah during pregnancy can harm the fetus and increase the risk of low birth weight and neonatal mortality.
- Q: How many puffs of hookah equal a cigarette?
- A: One session of hookah smoking can expose the smoker to more toxic chemicals than a single cigarette.
- “Hookah.” World Health Organization, World Health Organization, 18 Mar. 2019, https://www.who.int/tobacco/control/monitoring_trade/hookah/en/.
- “Shisha.” NHS, NHS, 24 May 2019, https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/quit-smoking/what-is-shisha/.
- “Hookahs.” American Lung Association, American Lung Association, 20 Apr. 2020, https://www.lung.org/quit-smoking/smoking-facts/hookahs.