Recent studies have suggested that you may just lose your vision if you are a heavy smoker. Smoking is said to damage colour and contrast vision. So if you smoke and are actually having trouble seeing, it’s a warning sign, go get yourself checked!
Published recently in the journal Psychiatry Research, the study compared 71 healthy people who smoked not much hat 15 cigarettes their entire life with 63 people who were chain smokers and smoked more than 20 cigarettes in a day, all of whom had normal or corrected to normal vision and were in the age group of 25- 45.
It was discovered that the group with heavy smokers showed changes in their colour vision. Their red- green and blue- yellow colour discrimination suffered and hence they had trouble in distinguishing contrasting colours.
This was significantly lesser in non-smokers.
The co- author of this research and the director of research at Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care, Steven Silverstein said, “Our results indicate that excessive use of cigarettes, or chronic exposure to their compounds, affects visual discrimination, supporting the existence of overall deficits in visual processing with tobacco addiction.”
He also added, “Cigarette smoke consists of numerous compounds that are harmful to health, and it has been linked to a reduction in the thickness of layers in the brain, and to brain lesions, involving areas such as… the area of the brain that processes vision.”
According to him, “Previous studies have pointed to long-term smoking as doubling the risk for age-related macular degeneration and as a factor causing lens yellowing and inflammation.”
Nicotine and smoking harm the body’s circulatory system, and these findings indicate they also damage blood vessels and neurons in the retina, according to Silverstein.