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Vaping vs Hookah vs Cigarettes: Which is more dangerous?

Which form of smoking is more dangerous?

People are being drawn towards the hookah and vapes due to their supposedly less harm compared to other tobacco substances. The number of teenagers smoking e-cigarettes and hookah has drastically increased in the past few years. The vaping versus smoking debate is ongoing and people might not be equipped with the correct information about these new trends and their inherent health risks. Let us discuss how vaping and hookah can impact your health, compared to smoking.

Unlike cigarettes, vaping does not use tobacco. Devices used for vaping are often referred to as e-cigarettes, vapes, or vape pens. They function by heating a chemical ("vape juice"), most commonly containing nicotine or THC, to create an aerosol with different flavours that are then inhaled. Most e-cigarettes deliver nicotine, which is highly addictive and can harm the developing brains of teens, kids and babies in women who vape while pregnant. Some of these expose users to even more nicotine than traditional cigarettes.

Also, e-cigarette vapour includes potentially harmful substances such as diacetyl (a chemical linked to a serious lung disease), cancer-causing chemicals, volatile organic compounds and heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead. Children and adults have been poisoned by swallowing, breathing or absorbing, through their skin or eyes, the liquid inside e-cigarettes.

So why is vaping dangerous?

Vapes can often be used in places where you can't smoke cigars and cigarettes, like restaurants, concerts and in your home. When you use an e-cigarette, you don't have to fumble around for a lighter. You can take a drag pretty much anytime. That means, with fewer controls in place, you can wind up taking in more nicotine than you suspect. They are equally harmful to the people around you as well.

Dangers of smoking Hookah

Dr. Kartik Krishnan says, “Hookahs are water pipes that are used to smoke specially-made tobacco mixtures that come in a wide variety of flavours. They usually work by passing charcoal-heated air through the tobacco mixture and ultimately through a water-filled chamber. A user then inhales the smoke through a tube and mouthpiece. At least 82 toxic chemicals and carcinogens have been identified in hookah smoke.”

Some think that using a hookah is safer than smoking cigarettes since the water filters the smoke. That is not true. Hookah smoke still contains nicotine and other chemicals that can harm the body. Some studies suggest that hookah smoking could be even more dangerous than cigarettes because people often smoke at hookah bars for an hour or more. An hour-long hookah smoking session involves 200 puffs while smoking an average cigarette involves 20 puffs. The amount of smoke inhaled during a typical hookah session is about 90,000 ml, compared with 500–600 ml inhaled when smoking a traditional cigarette.

So the bottom line is that smoking in any form, be it a traditional cigarette, hookah or vaping, is bad for your health. Nicotine in any form is dangerous and should be avoided. Stop the use of cigarettes, vapes and hookah!