Blurry Vision During Pregnancy

Many expectant mothers are aware of the drastic changes they expect during pregnancy, and sometimes they may still wonder if what they are feeling is normal or not. One of the issues pregnant women face is blurry vision which can be alarming. Although vision changes are quite common before, during and after pregnancy, you should know the reasons behind blurry vision during pregnancy and the available treatments.

Causes and Corresponding Treatments of Blurred Vision

When vision changes during pregnancy, many women become surprised and some have a genuine concern. Now let's find out some of the main reasons of blurry visions during pregnancy.

1. Fluid Retention

Fluid retention is the main cause for many vision issues, which changes the shape and thickness of the cornea, leading to distorted and blurred vision.

What to do: The good news is that these changes usually go away after pregnancy and you may not need to do anything at all. However, if the distorted vision persists, you'll need to discuss the issue with your physician.

2. Preeclampsia

Blurry vision during pregnancy can also be caused by a potentially serious complication called preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is diagnosed in women who have high blood pressure and protein in their urine. Women with preeclampsia can expect symptoms that typically include light sensitivity, blurry vision, flashes of light, auras and temporary loss of vision.

What to do: If you're experiencing any of these symptoms, contact your physician immediately or visit the emergency room for prompt treatment. The condition can develop rapidly, causing serious complications like bleeding.

3. Gestational Diabetes

The retinas of your eyes contain many small blood vessels and blood pressure associated with diabetes can damage them during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is a temporary form of diabetes, which can damage your retinas in the same way.

What to do: With gestational diabetes, you have to monitor your blood sugar levels regularly to avoid the high blood pressure which can cause bleeding in your retinas.

4. Hormonal Changes

All pregnant women go through significant hormonal changes and some of these changes can lead to vision problems.

What to do: Hormonal changes affect your body's ability to produce tears, and you can use eye drops to remedy that. But when the blurry vision persists, the hormone progesterone may be the culprit, which has a softening effect on collagen in the eye. Fortunately, the changes are temporary and your vision should return to normal after delivery.

Does Pregnancy Have Other Effects On Your Vision and Eyes?

The short answer is yes, especially if you go into your pregnancy with other physical issues. Now let's go through the following issues one by one.

1. Worsen Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy can change your vision. Pregnancy often exacerbates any conditions you may already have and if you are diabetic, you'll need to seek advice from an ophthalmologist, preferably before you even get pregnant and again in early pregnancy to get screened for damages to the blood vessels in your retinas. Diabetic retinopathy is often worsens during pregnancy, so you should get more eye exams even after pregnancy. 

2. Relieve Glaucoma

Women who want to conceive and also have glaucoma need to see their physician to possibly lower the dose of their medication before pregnancy and have it adjusted throughout the pregnancy. Glaucoma sometimes improves during pregnancy, and decreased doses of medication lessen the baby's exposure to it.

3. Cause Floaters

Except blurry vision during pregnancy, you may also have floaters when expecting your baby. Physicians take it seriously when women complain about spots in their vision. Spots that seem to float across the field of vision are called "floaters". It is normally minor and doesn't indicate an abnormal pregnancy. However stationary spots that encompass a larger part of vision can be serious. These dark spots could be a condition called scotomata and can indicate a problematic condition such as preeclampsia or eclampsia. The high blood pressure associated with these conditions can result in unusual vision symptoms. Once the high blood pressure is under control, vision usually returns to normal.

4. Lead to Puffiness Around Eyes

Puffiness around the eyes is a common side effect of pregnancy. The remedy includes drinking plenty of fluids and limiting your intake of sodium. However, puffy eye is also a symptom of preeclampsia, a potentially serious issue, and should be reported to your obstetrician to ensure your blood pressure is not too high.

5. Have Dry Eyes

Due to hormone changes during pregnancy, you may have irritable dry eyes, like sand in your eye. You may feel a burning or itching sensation, or you could even begin weeping suddenly. This is usually normal, and your physician may recommend the use of artificial tears dropped several times a day to help remedy the discomforts.

Can Contact Lens Cause Blurred Vision During Pregnancy?

Wearing contact lenses can cause blurry vision during pregnancy, and this normally happens to almost all expectant moms. Contact lenses become irritable and ill-fitting as your eyes change shape during pregnancy, and unfortunately there is little that can be done about it. All corrective actions or surgeries should be avoided because these procedures may endanger your pregnancy. The good news is that after pregnancy, as your eyes and cornea return to normal, blurry vision will disappear and corrective measures may not even be needed.

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