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pregnancy can affect your eyes | Johnston, RI

Pregnancy can be a wonderful event in a woman’s life, but it’s no secret that it comes with many challenges to face. Changes in hormones translate into physical bodily changes that can sometimes be unexpected. For example, while most people know about all the swelling that occurs in all kinds of places, and the sudden shifts in mood or appetite, many may not realize that pregnancy can affect another very important aspect of your life: your vision. Here are some things to look out for when you’re expecting.

Dry Eyes

Due to the wild changes in hormones during pregnancy, your eyes can be tricked into producing less moisture sometimes. This can stem from either a lack of the water, mucus, or oil that makes up your tears, or a combination of them. This will usually fix itself after the baby is born, and in the meantime, you can use eye drops to alleviate any irritation that may occur. Other ways to avoid dry eyes is to avoid dry climates if possible, avoid anywhere with a lot of dust or other airborne particles, and reduce screen time.

Rapid Changes in Prescription

Again, this is fairly normal, and nothing to be alarmed about. Hormones will also affect and change your cornea shape, thus making you more nearsighted or farsighted. This is why pregnancy will prevent you from receiving LASIK. The surgery requires you to have a stable prescription for at least a year before you can get it, so that you aren’t at risk for correcting for the wrong prescription. These rapid refractive changes also tend to revert after the birth.

Swelling of the Eyelids

As was mentioned above, swelling occurs all over the body during pregnancy, and the eyes are no exception. The eyelids specifically can be afflicted by the bodies natural water retention. Though it may sound contradictory, drinking lots of water and watching your sodium intake can help prevent this problem.

Eye Pressure

Your blood pressure will increase while you are pregnant, which can cause ocular hypertension. This generally nothing to be worried about, but it should be monitored so that it doesn’t turn into something worse (like glaucoma).

Generally Bad or Blurry Vision

The changing shape of your cornea and the eyelid swelling can seriously affect your ability to see well. It’s a good idea (with any of these examples) to check in with your eye doctor if any of these symptoms become severe. This problem can be fixed with a new eyeglass or contact lens prescription.

Glaucoma Medications

If you have glaucoma, it is extremely important to speak with doctors to make sure the medication you are taking isn’t harmful to the baby. There are lots of glaucoma medication available, but some of them can be dangerous to unborn children.

If you are concerned with how pregnancy is affecting your vision, be sure to contact Dr. Diamante here at our Rhode Island office. Schedule your appointment and put those worries to rest! We look forward to helping you maintain healthy, clear vision during pregnancy.

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