Smoking and sight loss
Smokers double their risk of developing AMD, one of the UK's leading causes of sight loss
Smoking doubles your chances of losing your sight:
- Smoking causes harm to the tissues of the eye. Research has confirmed the harmful effects of smoking on eyesight, particularly in the development of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) - one of the UK's leading causes of sight loss - and cataracts.
- Smokers double their risk of developing AMD, and tend to develop it earlier than non-smokers. Treatment options for AMD are limited. Stopping smoking can reduce the risk of macular degeneration developing.
- Smoking is linked to the development of cataracts, and although they are treatable and therefore do not lead to blindness, they remain a major cause of sight loss in the UK.
- Smoking can make diabetes related sight problems worse.
- Smoking increases free radicals, which accelerate ageing, and alter the body's ability to absorb or extract necessary vitamins and minerals from food.
- Passive smoking is almost as harmful as smoking yourself.