Menopause Causing Visual Disturbances

Updated November 21, 2016

Women who are in peri-menopause or who are fully menopausal (haven't menstruated for a full year) can experience many symptoms as the result of diminishing hormones, including visual disturbances. Other factors, including the thyroid, can mess with your vision.

Thyroid Problems

Thyroid issues frequently crop up during menopause. If you are also experiencing swelling of your arms and legs, weight fluctuation, loss of hair from your eyebrows and eyelashes and neck pain, along with visual disturbance, this may indicate that you have a thyroid-related problem, according to


Hormonal metabolic changes, which occur during peri-menopause and menopause, as well as during pregnancy and when you are nearing your menstrual period, can result in visual and physiological changes in your eyes. Vascular changes can occur as well. More research needs to be done on this topic, but it is currently believed that the rapid change in levels of oestrogen, including high levels and low levels, affects the eyes but just how this happens is not known yet.

Hormone therapy reports that women who took oestrogen supplements or hormone replacement therapy for 10 years after entering into menopause were less apt to have cataracts, according to a study by the National Eye Institute. However, take into consideration that there are serious risks to your health, including breast cancer and heart disease, if you undergo hormone replacement therapy, so you must weigh the advantages of doing such against the potential dangers.

Migraines and Headaches

Oestrogen plays a big role in the manifestation of migraines and headaches, according to When a woman has a headache, this will cause visual disturbances including sensitivity to light. Some migraine sufferers see an aura. Migraines are apt to happen when a woman is ovulating. Once she is in menopause and no longer ovulating there is a good chance that her incidence of migraines and visual disturbances will decline.

Age-Related Vision Problems

Women who are menopausal are generally in their 40s or 50s, and this is about the same time that vision problems start to occur, according to Middle-aged women tend to develop presbyopia, which means that you can no longer focus on close-up objects. This condition will get worse as you age. Nearly half of all of the 65-year-olds in America have some measure of cataract formation in their eyes.

Other Considerations

Other age-related eye problems include glaucoma, which increases in likelihood with each decade after the age of 40. Many suffer from macular degeneration, which can lead to blindness. If you are a diabetic, which is a condition that may first pop up during menopause, you can develop diabetic retinopathy, which is a vision-threatening disease.

Menopause and Dry Eyes

Menopausal women may experience dry eyes, because as we get older we generate fewer tears. The eyes will sting and burn as a result and feel uncomfortable because of the dryness. This will result in visual disturbances.

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About the Author

Cindi Pearce is a graduate of Ohio University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in journalism. She completed both the undergraduate and graduate courses offered by the Institute of Children’s Literature. Pearce has been writing professionally for over 30 years.