Vision is from one of the five senses of the human body and eyes have a main role in that. You may worry about vision during pregnancy. So, don’t worry slight changes in vision are normal but a need is always there to contact your doctor.
Around 16% of mothers experience vision changes during pregnancy.
In pregnancy, several changes in a mother’s body have occurred and these changes may affect your vision also.
But not all eye problems are due to pregnancy, some problems may be due to other physiological diseases. Vision-related problems commonly start in the second trimester and becomes more noticeable in the third trimester.
In this blog, you are going to know about these contents
There are many reasons behind vision changes and eye-related problems during pregnancy. They are maybe due to eye disease or any other disease of other systems or may be due to some pregnancy hormones. So, below are some of them-
i. PREGNANCY HORMONES
The most common reason is pregnancy hormones. They can cause water retention which can cause increased IOP(Intra-ocular pressure) and results in double vision, blurred vision, and many other vision issues. They also reduce the tear generation.
ii. OTHER HEALTH INDICATION
The vision changes can be a symptom of other serious diseased condition during pregnancy.
iii. PIH (PREGNANCY -INDUCED HYPERTENSION)
PIH is characterized by blood pressure higher than normal during pregnancy. (systolic blood pressure more than 140 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure more than 90mmHg).It can cause vision problems like blurred vision, seeing spots.
iv PRE ECLAMPSIA
Preeclampsia is a condition that starts after the 20th week of gestation characterized by blood pressure higher than normal and proteinuria(presence of protein urine above normal). Approx.5% women are suffered from pre-eclampsia during their pregnancy journey.
If this condition is not treated, it can lead to serious problems such as eclampsia (seizures have occurred with high blood pressure), vision loss, light sensitivity, auras, or flashing of light.
v. GESTATIONAL DIABETES
It is a condition, in which blood sugars are higher than normal during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is first diagnosed in pregnancy and there is a higher chance that a woman has gestational diabetes and has developed type 2 diabetes after childbirth or in the future.
This diseased condition can damage the blood vessels of the retina and cause vision changes.
vi. DUE TO OCULAR DISEASES
Due to eye-related diseases.
vii. CENTRAL SEROUS CHORIORETINOPATHY(CSS)
In this condition, fluid leaked and collects under the retina causes the serous fluid detachment and maybe vision loss.
viii. DIABETIC RETINOPATHY
In this diseased condition, high blood sugar levels in the body causes damage to the blood vessels of the retina and leads to vision problems.
Glaucoma is a disease that damages the optic nerve. Mainly occurs to increased
x. IOP(Intra-ocular pressure) UVEITIS
It is a type of eye inflammation that causes swelling and redness in the eye.
2. SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
You have some vision change and physical change in your eye. Some changes are temporary and resolved after childbirth. Let’s start the discussion about some eye changes during pregnancy.
i. DRY EYES
Some mothers experience that their eyes become dry frequently, itching or scratchy sensation or feeling of something in the eye. Dry eyes are commonly due to change in the pregnancy hormones.
ii. BLURRED VISION
You may not able to see clearly, blurred vision. This change is due to fluid retention which will further affect the eyes and this can be a sign of some other diseased conditions such as, preeclampsia or gestational diabetes.
iii. CORNEAL EDEMA
In pregnancy, the cornea becomes thicker and more curved which can cause corneal edema. Then, you experience a problem in wearing your contact lenses and changes in vision.
iv. REFRACTIVE CHANGES
In pregnancy, refractive changes in eyes can occur and you need to wear higher power length and glasses. Contact ophthalmologist for prescription.
v. PUFFY EYELIDS
Eyes become more puffy and edematous. This can affect your peripheral vision also.
vi. BLOTCHY EYES
It affects approx.5-7%of pregnant women. Hypermelanosis (blotchy or sportful pigmentation)occurs on the eyelids and the area around eyes like nose and cheeks.
vii. SPIDER VEINS & PTOSIS
Spider veins are also known as angiomas. They can occur on eyes, face, and on the upper body due to increased estrogen level Ptosis is the condition when the upper eyelid droops or fall down due to hormonal changes and water retention.
- Inability to focus
- Double vision(A person sees the double image of one object)
- Blind spots(In a specific range of area, you are not able to see clearly but after changing the angle you can see the object.)
- Eye flashes (Sparks of light are seen)
- Eye floaters (Seeing spots during vision)
- Sensitivity to light
3. VISION CHANGES IN EVERY TRIMESTER
Trimester of pregnancy can help you in determining the underlying cause of the eye problem issues.
In this trimester, changes are early and recently started. So, our body becomes start to habituate with hormonal changes. Vision changes are nill or very early.
In this trimester, you have to become more concerned about eye health. Health conditions like pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes are commonly about to happen after the 20th week. So, produces more risk on eye and vision changes. If you notice any deviation in your vision then, consult with a doctor.
In 3rd trimester, eye-related symptoms become more noticeable because the body retains more fluid.
Some tips you can do to minimize the discomfort in the eye. Let’s discuss them-
i. GIVE REST TO EYES
- Do not give extra strain to your eyes during pregnancy.
- Study in a well-lighted room.
- Do not watch tv, computer or laptop for a long time. Take a little break.
- Take a short day time sleep of around one hour.
- Wash your eyes properly.
ii. SAFE EYE DROPS
Eye drops helps to keep lubricating eyes and prevent dryness. But make sure that, do not instill eye drops without consulting the doctor. Talk to your doctor about any issue.
iii. AVOID CONTACT LENSES
It is better to avoid contact lenses during pregnancy. They can cause irritation to the eyes.
iv. EYE EXERCISES
Eyes are also part of our body. So, like other parts of the body, the exercise of the eye is also necessary. Contact your opthalmologist to take advice.
v. MAINTAIN GLUCOSE LEVEL
If you have gestational diabetes or any risk factor, make sure to maintain your blood sugar level in control.
vi. CONSULT WITH OPHTHALMOLOGIST
If you have any vision-related problem, contact an eye specialist as soon as possible.
I hope that now you are able to find the answer to all your questions and to clear your queries about what are the causes, signs and symptoms, management, and trimester wise change of vision during pregnancy. If you still have any doubt or query, then you can ask in the comment box
below or inbox. Thank you so much and have a nice day.
You may also read- Do’s and Don’ts during pregnancy|Information Guide for Pregnancy
The majority of vision disturbances during pregnancy are normal and temporary means return to normal after childbirth.
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In pre-eclampsia, 25 % of pregnant women have sight-related issues like blurred vision, temporary vision loss, or light sensitivity.