Post-LASIK care is an important step of the LASIK procedure, and if done correctly will ensure a smooth recovery. Right after the surgery, it is normal to experience bloodshot eyes or red spots on the cornea. Dry eyes or discomfort may continue for the first few weeks while your eyes adjust. It is important to keep in mind that everybody’s body heals differently, resulting in various recovery time frames.
Correctly following proper post-LASIK eye care tips and scheduling regular doctor visits are fundamental to a successful recovery. Doctors may suggest a mild pain killer or numbing eye drops to manage the post-surgery ache. Sight improvement may begin to develop within the first week or may take a little longer, depending on the person. Nonetheless, follow these eye care tips for the first couple of months after getting LASIK surgery.
1. Get Rest, and More Rest
After any sort of surgery, rest provides your body with the energy it needs to heal itself. With LASIK in particular, it is important to close your eyes periodically to aid eye rehabilitation and reduce dry eyes and irritation. Especially for the first week after LASIK, treat yourself with care and allow for relaxation.
2. Coverage is Key
Immediately after the surgery, you will notice an increased sensitivity in your eyes. Shielding them will lessen irritation and accelerate healing. Sunglasses should be worn when outside for the first few weeks to protect your eyes from harmful rays. Similarly, at night, goggles should be worn to prevent injury from unconscious eye rubbing.
3. Avoid Particles
Similar to any open wound, it is vital to keep the area clean and safe from unwanted particles. Mainly for the first week, avoid dirty or dusty areas so as not to cause irritation from particles in the air. Participating in daily “messy” activities such as gardening, cleaning or washing are also not recommended. Smoking may also cause red eyes or increased irritation.
Certain seasons may cause more irritation due to increased pollen in the air. Avoid rubbing your eyes and use proper eye care to prevent further irritation.
4. Relax the Eye Muscle
The eye is in fact a muscle, and should be treated as such. After any surgery, the muscle must heal in order to gain back its full ability. Keeping that in mind, the eye should not be strained as much as usual and given resting time to recover. Since we use our eyes at all times of the day, it is difficult to completely avoid use of the eye. However, by reducing reading, driving and other eye-straining activities, your eyes will be able to relax.
5. Monitor Physical Activity
For the first week it is highly suggested that you not take part in any sort of physical activity. During the recovery period, intense movements could slow down the healing process or cause a complication. Continue to avoid contact sports or rough exercising during the first month post-LASIK. If you do wish to engage in physical activity, goggles should be worn to ensure full protection.
6. Watch Out for Water
Even though water seems like an innocent cleanser, it has the ability to bring unwanted chemicals and particles into the eye. The corneal flap is a delicate lens that must be protected during its healing process. Any sort of disruption could cause pain or potential complications. For the first day, showers are not recommended due to the potential introduction of soap or shampoo into the eye region. Avoid swimming and hot tubs for the following month as these waters are infused with chlorine and other harmful chemicals.
If you are thinking about getting LASIK, contact OCLI today to see if it is right for you.