The Dangers of Smoking and Eye Health

smoker's eye care Cleveland

We can help with smoker’s eye care at Corrective Eye Center.

Today is the American Cancer Society’s Great All-American Smoke Out. Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US, yet about 43.8 million Americans still smoke cigarettes. That is nearly 1 out of every 5 adults!

Everyone is aware of the dangers of smoking and the increased risk of heart disease and lung cancer. But did you know that smoking can lead to vision loss or even blindness? Studies show that smoking can also increase your risk of developing vision problems such as:

  • Macular degeneration (MD)
    • Smokers are 3-4 times more likely to develop
      MD than nonsmokers.
    •  Nonsmokers who live with smokers nearly double their risk.
  • Cataracts
    • If you smoke 15+ cigarettes a day your risk of developing a cataract is 3 times as
      much as nonsmokers.
  • Glaucoma
    • There is a link between smoking and cataracts, high blood pressure and diabetes – all
      of which increase your risk for glaucoma.
  • Diabetic retinopathy
    • Smokers have a higher risk of getting diabetes.
    • Diabetics who smoke are more likely to develop vascular, heart or kidney disease, as
      well as nerve damage, foot problems and retinopathy.
  • Dry eyes
    • Smokers are more than twice as likely to be affected by dry eye syndrome as nonsmokers.

To prevent smoking-related vision loss, quit smoking and eat a healthy diet. If you need help, The American Cancer Society has published a guide to help you quit smoking.

For proper smoker’s eye care, it is important to receive an annual eye exam. The Corrective Eye Center can help diagnose and treat a variety of vision problems and eye diseases including those listed above. If you are a smoker or if you think you may have vision problems, schedule an appointment with one of our Cleveland eye specialist today.