Blurry Vision During Pregnancy

Is your eyesight changing during pregnancy? We'll tell you if you should get new glasses and when you should see your doctor.
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Updated March 2, 2017
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What is blurry vision during pregnancy?

Now that you’re expecting, you might find your eyesight isn’t as sharp as it used to be.

What could be causing my blurry vision during pregnancy?

There are actually a lot of reasons you might not be seeing clearly. Hey, it could just be a product of pregnancy dizziness. “Pregnant women may complain of blurry vision when they go from reclining to standing up too quickly,” says Robert O. Atlas, MD, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. “What happens is, not a lot of blood is going to the brain, and their vision gets blurred, and they may find themselves dizzy as well.” Some pregnant women also have swelling during pregnancy, which can change your eyes enough to affect your vision — usually it’s temporary and just another pregnancy symptom.

But know that some pregnancy health conditions, like preeclampsia, can cause retinal swelling too — that’s why blurry vision is a complaint of some preeclampsia patients, says Atlas.

Gestational diabetes may be a culprit since glucose can hang out in the lens and may cause differences in the cornea. Blurry visions can also be related to retinal detachments, which can sometimes be caused by  hypertension disorders.

When should I go to the doctor about my blurry vision during pregnancy?

If you have blurry vision, definitely tell your doctor. If it’s persistent or if it’s a new onset, your OB may recommend that you see an ophthalmologist, but at the very least, you should have your blood pressure checked, and possibly your blood sugar too.

If your blurry vision is accompanied by a headache, swelling, abdominal pain and rapid weight gain, you may have preeclampsia, in which case you should seek medical treatment ASAP.

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What should I do to treat blurry vision during pregnancy?
If it turns out it’s just a side effect of pregnancy, your vision will likely return to normal after childbirth, so it doesn’t make sense to change prescriptions for corrective lenses. In the meantime, you may want to wear your glasses instead of contacts for comfort.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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