As you probably already know, smoking causes a wide assortment of health problems. It is common knowledge among many the affects smoking can have on your heart and lungs, however not a lot of people understand the negative health implications it has on your eyes. Quitting smoking reduces your chance of developing lung cancer, but it can also help to protect your eyes from vision hampering eye disease.
While cataracts are fairly common in adults as they grow older, studies have shown a link between smokers and cataracts. Studies even suggest that smokers are 50% more likely of developing cataracts at a younger age than those who do not smoke. Cataracts are reversible with cataract surgery; however, they highly compromise your vision which can be discomforting.
One eye disease that plagues senior citizens is Macular Degeneration. A retina deteriorating eye disease that causes the gradual permanent loss of your vision. Macular Degeneration can affect your vision at multiple levels—your vision could become blurry, develop blind spots or even be lost completely. Studies have shown that those who smoke are three times more likely to develop Macular Degeneration than those who do not smoke.
Diabetes is a problem for many Americans around the country and smoking is said to increase your risks of developing diabetes. Diabetic retinopathy is an ocular complication that is caused by diabetes and can cause severe vision loss and requires serious medical intervention to treat. Smoking exacerbates your risks of developing both diabetes and diabetic retinopathy.
If your eyes regularly feel like they are stinging or burning and your vision becomes blurry for no apparent reason, then you probably are a sufferer of dry eye. Dry eye is discomforting and can compromise the tear film on your eye, as well as damage the surface of your eye. Dry eye is common among many adults, but smoking has been known to worsen symptoms of dry eye and cause increased ocular discomfort.
If you have to smoke, then do yourself a favor and make sure you have regular eye exams to ensure the health of your eyes. Only a trained ophthalmologist can ensure the health of your vision and catch eye disease early before it becomes a major problem. If you are a smoker or know a smoker in the Tallahassee area, make sure you set up an appointment for yourself or encourage the smokers you know to set up an appointment at the Eye Associates of Tallahassee. Call 850 – 878 – 6161 and set up an appointment today.