laser eye surgery

How to ensure a smooth recovery after laser eye surgery

Making sure that your recovery from laser eye surgery goes smoothly is just as crucial as the surgery itself.

Common sensations that you can expect to feel after your surgery include

  • Itchiness, the irritation that comes with feeling like there’s something in your eye
  • Mild pain
  • Watery-ness
  • Blurry vision
  • Light sensitive vision.

Don’t worry…all of these are completely normal. This also explains why you must bring a friend or relative with you to your surgery. Most certainly, you won’t be able to drive, and will find it difficult to take public transport on your own.

Your friend will also be able to prevent you from the impulse to touch, or rub the eye area and cause further aggravation once the local anaesthetic starts to wear off. Once you get home, we’ll do the rest with the goggles that we’ll supply you- these will prevent you from rubbing your eyes in your sleep.

In fact, you must be very careful and resist the impulse to rub your eyes for at least a week so that you give them the chance to heal completely and avoid causing unintentional damage. We will prescribe antibiotics and eye drops to prevent post-op infection and help keep the eye moist and lubricated.

Alcohol

We don’t advise you to consume any alcohol on the day before, the day of, and the after your operation. This could cause your eyes to get excessively dry and prolong your recovery as it can affect the stability of your tear film, causing discomfort and increasing the need to use the eye drops.

Sensitivity

As we mentioned before, you may experience some sensitivity to light; see halos around light sources, and have bloodshot eyes. These symptoms should improve considerably within the first few days after surgery.

Follow up appointments

Following LASIK laser eye surgery, you will typically have follow up appointments after: 1 day, 1 week, 10 days, and then 6-8 weeks, 3 months, 6 months,  and finally 12 months after your surgery date.

Back to work

Rest is always best, but you will be able to return to work and drive within two to three days. In the first few weeks many people worry that their vision is still foggy, but don’t worry, this is completely normal, and it will take a few weeks for your vision to reach its optimal level, and it can also fluctuate from day to day until it gets to that point.

It is not uncommon for the two eyes to heal at varying rates, or for one eye to feel more comfortable than the other. Again, this is completely normal and will not interfere with driving or other regular activities.

Over the weeks following laser eye surgery, your vision will begin to return to normal, although you might still experience some symptoms, such as a sensitivity to light. These problems typically disappear 3-4 weeks after surgery and you should be symptom-free after this time, allowing you to enjoy your new vision free from contact lenses and glasses.

For more detailed information on recovering from laser eye surgery, and other refractive eye surgery procedures, check out our frequently asked questions page.

by CT Pillai

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