Young Londoners and Shisha

Shisha has recently exploded in British teens and young adults in the lsat decade, so much so that a recent survey found that 2 out of 5 local authorities of major metropolitan areas across the United Kingdom saw a rise in shisha lounges emerging. 

However, what makes shisha so alluring to young Londoners who would others be occupied by an alternative “hobby” instead of this one.

 

To find out, I went to Lamar Lounge in Perivale, West London, to interview the owner of the lounge as well as the customers.

 

 

From the customers of Lamar Lounge, it seems that factors such as flavours and shisha allegedly relieving stress are the prompts for them smoking shisha, and smoking it prevalently.

However, the associated risks seemed near mysterious to some shisha users. If smoking shisha is rising in young Londoners, should the health risks not be illuminated as clearly as with cigarettes and alcohol?

Myths about smoking shisha:

  1. Smoking shisha is less harmful than smoking cigarettes. Wrong. A one hour shisha session can be as harmful as smoking 10-100 cigarettes, so shisha is in some cases worse than “conventional smoking”.
  2. The water in a shish pipe filters any harmful substances. Wrong. Even tobacco free products can inhibit lung function in the long-run, as users are likely to be exposed to carbon monoxide fumes. 
  3. Smoking shisha occasionally doesn’t cause damage. Wrong. Unlike smoking a cigarette, which often lasts between 3-5 minutes with intervals of a few hours between smoking, shisha sessions are much more detrimental because of the increased period of time the smoker is to via using the device and the relative inactivity smokers take while and after using the device. 

 

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Words: Zubair Karmalkar

Featured Image: Awesome Sauce Creative – Unsplash

 

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