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When you smoke, the smoke itself is highly toxic. It contains heavy metals, formaldehyde, tar and carbon monoxide, and about 4,000 other compounds. It affects many organs, and one of these is your eyes. There are several vision problems that smoking causes. For your eye health, quit smoking as soon as you can and visit our eye doctor in Maple Ridge when it’s time for your eye exam.


Just one of the health problems that can develop due to smoking is cataracts. When you smoke, you double your risk of cataracts. A heavy smoker’s chances of developing cataracts are tripled. It is believed that smoking makes heavy metals accumulate in the lens. Smoking is believed to alter the cells of the lens, causing the lens to become cloudier. Methods for cataract management will depend on the severity of your condition.


Macular degeneration is another serious eye problem. This is a common cause of vision loss, especially in the elderly. It affects your central vision, which is the vision that you have when your eyes are looking ahead. With this condition, you may lose all or most of your central vision and have only your peripheral vision left. When you smoke, you raise the risk of macular degeneration from two to four times as much as someone who doesn’t smoke. The risk is also higher for those who spend a lot of time in smoky environments.


In addition to these two conditions, there are several more that can be caused by smoking. These include dry eye, conjunctivitis, diabetic retinopathy, lazy eye, and optic nerve damage. Our optometrist will evaluate your eye health to determine if any of these conditions are affecting your vision and provide the corresponding treatment.

Schedule an Appointment with Our Eye Doctor in Maple Ridge  

Call Maple Ridge Eye Care today at (604) 670-4434 for more information or to schedule an appointment with our optometrist.

Written by Dr. M. Hurlbert

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