Tobacco – Know the Risks

All tobacco products whether smoked, rolled or chewed are harmful. Tobacco contains nicotine which is addictive, and all tobacco products have serious health consequences. Outlined below are some of the tobacco products you may need help to quit.


Cigarettes are made up of tobacco, a range of chemical additives, a filter and paper and the smoke, when burned contains a mix of over 7000 harmful chemicals. Of these chemicals, more than 70 are linked to cancer. Smoking cigarettes harms almost every organ in the body and causes a range of diseases. Just breathing in your second-hand smoke can also cause respiratory problems.

Smokeless Tobacco

Smokeless tobacco is simply tobacco that is not burned, like chewing tobacco. All smokeless tobacco still has high levels of chemicals and people who use this type of tobacco product are at a higher risk of contracting mouth or throat cancer.


Hookah tobacco is smoked in a hookah waterpipe and is usually flavoured.  Other names used are, shisha, maassel, narghile, and goza. Hookah smoking has many of the same health risks as cigarette smoking and just because it travels through water doesn’t make it any safer. It is estimated that 30 mins using a hookah pipe can be is equivalent to smoking 100 cigarettes. The smoke produces by a hookah pipe contains carbon monoxide and chemicals that can cause lung, bladder, and mouth cancer.


E-cigarettes are also called e-cigs or vapes. They heat a liquid in an aerosol that is then inhaled. You are inhaling a mixture of potentially harmful chemicals it isn’t just water vapour. Most e cigarettes also contain nicotine which is addictive in whatever form.

Cigars and Cigarillos

A cigar is a roll of tobacco wrapped in leaf tobacco and they come in a range of sizes. Cigar smoke contains the same harmful cancer inducing substances as cigarettes and users can be exposed to nicotine even without fully inhaling.

Using Multiple Tobacco Products

The more products you use the more exposure to the harmful chemicals you are subject to. You also increase the amount of nicotine in your body making it even harder to quit.

Mixing Tobacco with Marijuana

Using tobacco and marijuana together increases the amount of harmful chemicals you are exposed to. You are more at risk and can increase the health issues you may face than if you use one product alone, you also increase the risk of becoming addicted to both substances.

Being in hospital has made me more self-aware and health conscious; it has got me thinking more about my health and making better long term choices, so I have given up smoking.
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