Smoking and Your Vision

It’s common knowledge that quitting smoking can drastically improve a person’s overall health and wellness, and cut the odds of developing serious diseases.  It turns out that avoiding or quitting smoking can also help long-term eye health.

Smoking has been linked to future risks for cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD), even in young smokers in their teens and early twenties.  The risk for these diseases goes up the more a person smokes.  Luckily, the solution is simple- quit smoking (or avoid it altogether) and the risk for these diseases decreases dramatically.
But the damage to eyes doesn’t end with cataracts and AMD.  Smokers are also more prone to cardiovascular diseases that indirectly affect eye health.  In addition, tobacco smoke (first or second-hand) can make the condition dry eye much worse. Smoking also increases the risk of serious vision loss in people with other eye diseases.
Finally, when a woman smokes during pregnancy, her risk of giving birth prematurely increases, thus putting babies at higher risk for a the potentially blinding disease, retinopathy of prematurity.
Time to quit? Take charge of your vision and your health now with The American Cancer Society’s resources at