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During pregnancy, it is common for some women to experience eye problems. Pregnancy is the time when women go through a lot of bodily and hormonal variations as they prepare for subsequent childbirth and parenting. The changing pregnancy hormones and augmented blood circulation may make pregnant women susceptible to infections. Pregnant women may develop dry or watery eyes during their pregnancy. Many of the eye problems that crop up during pregnancy are minor and transitory. They are likely to disappear on their own after childbirth.
Eye Infections in Pregnancy that You Should Aware of
Some of the eye infections that you may like to be aware of in pregnancy are:
1. Dry Eyes
- Most pregnant women develop dry eyes during pregnancy due to hormonal changes which are responsible for producing less water in eyes.
- The eyes may become red and are likely to dry out.
- Quite often a burning sensation is also felt.
- Eyes may also turn sensitive to sunlight.
- Refer to an eye doctor who may suggest mild eye drops to resolve the issue.
- In case the problem continues despite putting eye drops as recommended by the doctor, you may want to fix another appointment for a second eye checkup.
- On examination, you may have to go in for nonvascular constriction eye medication which may thin the blood vessels present on the eye’s surface.
2. Weak Eyesight
- This condition may develop during the second trimester wherein the vision appears to have become weak.
- Weak eyesight commonly happens because of increased fluid retention by the body due to the fluctuating pregnancy hormones.
- In case you use contact lenses you may find your vision to be quite blurred.
- You may like to opt for glasses instead of contact lenses.
- You can also seek your eye doctor’s advice regarding other feasible options.
- The weak eyesight is likely to correct itself after childbirth.
3. Conjunctivitis or Pink Eye
- Conjunctivitis refers to a condition in which conjunctiva, a thin membrane that shapes the eyelid and shelters the front part of the eye gets inflamed.
- The eye may look bloodshot or red as blood vessels on the eye’s surface dilate or widen forcing additional blood into the eye.
- Usually, the pink eye has other symptoms too like a pain in the eye, irritation, burning or itching, swelling of the infected eye, watery discharge.
- Conjunctivitis in pregnancy may get triggered by an allergy, infection (viral or bacterial), increased pressure in the eye, plugged tear duct or chronic dry eyes.
- Conjunctivitis is a contagious condition and thus should be treated promptly.
- Your eye doctor on evaluation may determine the cause of your conjunctivitis and then recommend antibiotics, if necessary.
- Alternatively applying cool washcloth on the affected eye may provide some relief from irritation and
Tips to Take Care of Pregnancy Eye Infection
Here are some tips to help you deal with eye infection during pregnancy:
1. Maintain Good Hygiene
Observing basic hygiene is the most important thing that can prove helpful in preventing eye infection. Bear in mind to wash your hands frequently. Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes. It is also not a good idea to share towels.
2. Cold Water Splashes
Splashing or washing your eyes with cold water several times in a day may eradicate the presence of any foreign bodies in the eyes and bring relief from irritation. Then again, putting a cold pack on the infected eye can aid in soothing the dilated blood vessels in the eye.
3. Warm Compress
Gently applying a warm compress at regular intervals to the affected eye can help in easing out some of the pain and inflammation.
4. Avoid Eye Makeup
In case you are prone to allergies, it is best to stay away from using eye makeup during pregnancy lest it causes infections.
5. Protection for Eyes
Always remember to wear a pair of good sunglasses when stepping out to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays of the sun, dust, and other pollutants.
6. Rose Water
You can also put a few drops of rose water in your eyes to wash away the infectious agents and allergic irritants.
Pregnancy eye infections are usually temporary conditions which may get automatically cured after delivery. During pregnancy self-medication to treat eye infection or taking over-the-counter eye drops should be avoided to prevent any probable pregnancy complications later on. One has to be careful while taking medications especially antibiotics during pregnancy. So, it is always desirable to contact your doctor for treatment of eye infections in pregnancy.