LASIK surgery is a safe procedure that can be performed in the space of an hour. You can enter a doctor’s office needing glasses and contacts and ditch your lenses that same day. But just because LASIK is a routine procedure, doesn’t mean people are not required to take proper postoperative care of their eyes.
Why is proper care important after LASIK?
Refractive errors are caused by irregularly shaped corneas. LASIK corrects vision by reshaping the corneas depending on your unique prescription needs. In order to do this, your ophthalmologist makes a small incision in the cornea. These flaps are lifted, and a laser is used to do the reshaping. This flap is sealed up once the corrections have been made, but they do need time to properly heal to prevent damage or infection.
What does proper postoperative LASIK care entail?
Wear sunglasses. You may feel some discomfort after LASIK, and if you live in a particularly sunny area, donning some shades is a good call.
Don’t overdo it on the reading. It’s best not to strain your eyes too much following LASIK. While you will be able to see clearly within a day of the procedure, it’s best to take it easy. If you find yourself going stir crazy, considering listening to music or an audiobook.
Avoid risky activities. This isn’t restricted to obvious activities like contact sports. This also includes everyday, seemingly safe tasks like working in the garden. Getting something in your eye or walking into tree branches can cause nasty complications if they injure your eyes while your corneas are still healing.
Ditch the eye makeup for a week. The fact that you no longer wear glasses may have you eager to dive into a new eyeshadow kit, but practice a little patient. It’s best to wait a week before wearing eye makeup again. Things like foundation and blush are fine, but particles from eyeliners and eyeshadows can get in your eyes and cause irritations. Even after the week is up, switch to brand new eye makeup products. Your eyes are more susceptible to infection after LASIK, so you want products with the least amount of bacteria on them as possible.
Avoid swimming and hot tubs. Pools and hot tubs are veritable bacteria parties. When your eyes are healing, you don’t want to risk the potential irritation or infection from these usually fun spots.
Try not to smoke. It’s not absolutely vital that you refrain from smoking after LASIK, but the smoke may irritate your eyes for some time, so if you can it’s probably best to avoid lighting up for a little while.
Wait until you get the go-ahead from your doctor to drive. This is typically within a day, but you should still wait for your 24-hour follow-up appointment before you start operating a motor vehicle following LASIK. This isn’t just for the well being of your eyes – this is for the well being of your entire self and others who are also on the road!
Have additional questions about LASIK? Our team at Frantz EyeCare would be pleased to guide you through the process of laser eye surgery. Dr. Frantz will determine whether you are an ideal candidate, walk you through the process if you are, and ensure you have all the information you need to take care of yourself following your LASIK procedure. You can book a consultation at our Fort Myers, Cape Coral or Naples, FL locations. We look forward to seeing you!