Alcohol & Other Drugs


Hookahs are used to smoke specially-made flavored tobacco that may appear enticing to college students. It is typically a social activity and most people assume it is less risky than smoking cigarettes.

  • Contrary to what many people think, hookah carries the same health risks as cigarettes, including addiction, cancer, and heart disease.
  • Due to the mode of smoking -- including frequency of puffing, depth of inhalation, and length of the smoking session -- hookah smokers may absorb higher concentrations of the toxins found in cigarette smoke.
  • A typical hour-long hookah smoking session involves inhaling 100-200 times the volume of smoke inhaled from a single cigarette.

Hookah smoking is NOT a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes.

  1. American Lung Association. An Emerging Deadly Trend: Waterpipe Tobacco Use.
  2. Akl E.A., Gaddam, S., Gunukula, S.K., Honeine, R., Jaoude, P.A., & Irani, J. (2010). The effects of water pipe tobacco smoking on health outcomes: A systemic review. International Journal of Epidemiology, 39, 834-857.
  3. World Health Organization. (2005). Tobacco Regulation Advisory Note. Water Pipe Tobacco Smoking: Health Effects, Research Needs and Recommended Actions by Regulators, Tobacco Free Initiative.