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Smokers can develop age-related macular degeneration earlier than non-smokers

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently published a briefthat states that smokers can develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD) up to 5 1/2 years earlier than their non-smoking counterparts.

In addition, living with a smoker and being exposed to second-hand smoke

increases the risk of developing age-related macular degree by twice as much.

AMD wasn't the only eye condition that smokers are at an increased risk for. The brief also found that smokers are more likely to develop cataracts. 

And while e-cigarettes are often touted as a "safe" alternative to tobacco products, they have been found to possibly increase the production of free radicals which can cause cataracts to develop. E-cigarettes may also reduce blood flow to the eyes, alter retinal function, which can lead to an increased risk of eye cancer.

To better protect overall health, including eye health, WHO encourages people to not use tobacco or e-cigarettes and for those who do use these products, they are encouraged to quit.

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