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Chioma Ozoemelam: Before You Inhale the Next Vapour from Hookah….



It’s almost the weekend and most of you are getting ready to hit the clubs and have a good time. A lot of you are looking forward to doing your favourite thing: blowing hookah smoke into the snapchat camera, while lip-syncing to DJ Khaled’s Wild Thoughts. Well, I have news for you and it’s not good news: Hookah smoking is dangerous to your health.

Unfortunately,a lot of people do not know how dangerous it is,as it is trending in our society.
Hookah -or as some may call it- Shisha is a single or multi-stemmed instrument for vapourizing and smoking flavoured tobacco,whose smoke is passed through a water basin before being inhaled.The tobacco is sometimes sweetened with fruits or molasses sugar,which makes the smoke more aromatic than cigarette smoke and often very appealing. There are new forms of hookah smoking called e-hookah,including hookah pens. This is why some people,p particularly young people who otherwise will not smoke cigarette, begin to smoke hookah.
Some of you are thinking “but I gave up cigarette for hookah”! Sorry, but hookah is not a safe alternative to cigarette. I will tell you why.

Hookah contains nicotine, high levels of toxic compounds, including tar,carbon monoxide, heavy metals, and cancer-causing chemicals. In fact, hookah smokers are exposed to more carbon monoxide and smoke than are cigarette smokers. Research has shown that a 60 minutes session of smoking hookah involves 200 puffs, whereas smoking cigarette involves 20 puffs; so, do the maths. All these toxic substances are delivered right into your lungs. So like cigarette smokers, hookah smokers are at risk of diseases such as: heart disease, cancer, respiratory diseases and adverse effect during pregnancy. It is also a danger to others who are exposed to the smoke emitted.

Usually, during a smoking session, up to 4 people can share the hookah mouthpiece. I really don’t know how they do it, that’s just disgusting. Further more, diseases such as oral herpes and tuberculosis can be spread from sharing.

Also, hookah smoking does nothing good for your looks – especially for those who smoke it frequently. It is really bad for aesthetics. It can cause your skin to look pale and even wrinkled. It can also cause yellow teeth and bad breath.

Finally, it is important to know that hookah is addictive. You can get hooked on hookah. Just like cigarette, it contains nicotine, which is a very addictive substance. Some people think that the water used in the pipe will absorb the nicotine, but it really doesn’t absorb all of it. So, hookah smokers are still exposed to enough nicotine to cause an addiction.

So yeah, smoking hookah is pretty dangerous. When next you go to hangout with your friends/colleagues, look for fun things to do other than smoking hookah (or anything at all).

Photo Credit: © Marcio Goldzweig | Dreamstime

Chioma Ozoemelam, MD is a Nigerian board-certified Physician. Her day job is at a Pediatric hospital where her patients are also her favorite type of people; children. Chioma volunteers at a cancer foundation where she gets the chance to exercise her other passion, “educating and counseling as a form of medical intervention.


  1. Moniker

    July 28, 2017 at 2:13 pm

    Kukuma kimi na. Shisha is bae. It is just me and my madam that takes it. Once in a while. Something will sha kill a man

  2. onetallgirl

    July 28, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    I knew it wasn’t good for you! People want to say that because hookah smells good its not bad for you, nicotine is nicotine whether its in hookah form or cigarette form. I have never tried hookah and I never will!

  3. Dee

    July 28, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    Thanks for this.

    Some people will still smoke it even after knowing how dangerous it is. Dem go say “something must kill a man”, yes even if something go kill person, no be wetin make u go take your own hand take wetin no good for body.

  4. June

    July 28, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    And this article had to drop of a Friday afternoon ??????? Well, there goes my Friday night??. What do dothis evening ???

    • Krasavitsa

      July 28, 2017 at 4:10 pm

      Smoke the hookah like that! 🙂

  5. SoniaPaloma

    July 28, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    Reminds me of few weeks back when a friend came over to mine with his hookah set and we began to smoke. About 2 or 3 hours later my carbon monoxide alarm went off and I thought it was broken and started panicking. Lo and behold i googled what shisha contains and I saw Carbon Monoxide as one of the compounds. That was the day I said NEVER, not touching that Shisha no more. So much toxic substance in it that one is not aware of .

  6. Ethio

    July 28, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    Make we kukuma die nah. “Smokers are liable to die young” Na today?. Even if you don’t smoke shisha you will still die

  7. Critique

    July 28, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Smoking is so stupid. I don’t understand why anyone would ever want to take a puff… or anything.

    • Critique

      July 28, 2017 at 9:53 pm

      *of anything

  8. Papacy

    July 28, 2017 at 11:35 pm

    Please each smoker has his or her own mouth piece to use while smoking shisha. At least that’s the norm where I hang out…

    • tos

      July 31, 2017 at 3:31 pm

      please tell them! i havent for once shared with anyone.

  9. Jee

    July 29, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    Quit shisha and ciger smoke marijuana

  10. Anonymous

    July 29, 2017 at 9:02 pm

    Interesting to note because everyone one MAY die of something someday, it’s now okay to accelerate the process. wow.

  11. Amarachi

    July 31, 2017 at 9:05 am

    I just knew shisha was bad! Thank God I don’t smoke

  12. nekene

    July 31, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    smoking is bad generally, shisha or cigarette. this is a call to quit random smoking.

  13. Tosin

    July 31, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    I never would have thought of smoking but neither did I really think hookah is bad. Good to know now…I’ll share with all my friends.

  14. uzoamaka

    July 31, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    A very informative piece from an insightful lady. Love it!

  15. ori

    July 31, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Thanks for that lovely piece… we live in a society where the younger ones who are even closer to technology take the ‘dip’ before stirring the waters. : live healthy


    August 5, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    Relocate from Hookar or cigar !……..>>>..…..Moving your home or office? Let us help you pack!

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