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Question
Posted by: Lewin | 2019/03/22

Can smoking affect your eyesight?

My girlfriend says smoking can make you go blind, and it can also make people around you like her go blind. How much of a risk is this really?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageStop Smoking Advice
- 2019/03/25

There are few parts of the body smoking doesn't negatively affect, and yes, it can damage your eyes and even lead to blindness in more severe cases. It increases your risk for developing vision disorders such as:

Age-related macular degeneration. Smokers have 3-4 times the risk of non-smokers 
Cataracts. Smokers have around 3x the risk of non-smokers
Glaucoma. Smoking increases risk of high blood pressure and diabetes, which in turn increase risk for glaucoma
Dry eye syndrome is twice as likely to develop in smokers.
Diabetic retinopathy. Smoking raises risk for getting and worsening diabetes, which has vision loss as a complication.

Passive smokers (exposed to second-hand smoke from being around smokers) have raised risk for many tobacco-related disorders, though to a lesser extent than smokers do. In the case of age-related macular degeneration, people living with a smoker double their risk for the condition.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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