Pregnancy and Vision

Pregnancy brings an increase in hormones that may cause changes in vision. In most cases, these are temporary eye conditions that will return to normal after delivery.

As an expectant mother, you should be aware of vision changes during pregnancy and know what symptoms indicate a serious problem.

Refractive Changes
During pregnancy, changes in hormone levels can alter the strength you need in your eyeglasses or contact lenses. Though this is is usually nothing to worry about, it’s a good idea to discuss any vision changes with an eye doctor who can help you decide whether or not to change your prescription.

The doctor may simply tell you to wait a few weeks after delivery before making a change in your prescription.  


Dry Eyes
Some women experience dry eyes during pregnancy. This is usually temporary and goes away after delivery. The good news is that lubricating eye drops are perfectly safe to use while you are pregnant or nursing. They can lessen the discomfort of dry eyes. Your eyes will return to normal within a few weeks after delivery.


Puffy Eyelids
Puffiness around the eyes is another common side effect of certain hormonal changes women may have while pregnant. Puffy eyelids may interfere with side vision. As a rule of thumb, don’t skimp on your water intake and stick to a moderate diet, low in sodium and caffeine. These healthy habits can help limit water retention and boost your overall comfort.


Women who are diabetic before their pregnancy and those who develop gestational diabetes need to watch their vision closely. Blurred vision in such cases may indicate elevated blood sugar levels. Fundus examination by an ophthalmologist is must


High Blood Pressure
In some cases, a woman may have blurry vision or spots in front of her eyes while pregnant which can be due to an increase in blood pressure during pregnancy. Fundus examination is a must.


Women being treated for glaucoma should tell their eye doctor right away if they are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. While many glaucoma medications are safe to take during pregnancy, certain glaucoma medications such as carbonic anhydrase inhibitors can be harmful to the developing baby.