5 Tips for a Smooth Recovery From LASIK

Posted by: Missouri Eye Institute in Blog on December 11, 2023

LASIK eye surgery is a popular procedure that can correct vision problems like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. While the procedure may only take fifteen minutes, the recovery process can last several weeks as the eyes heal and adjust. 

The good news is that following proper post-op care can help you have a comfortable recovery with great vision results. Keep reading to learn five tips for a smooth recovery from LASIK!

1. Take It Slow

During LASIK, a flap will be created in your cornea. At the end of the procedure, the flap is closed and left to reattach on its own without stitches. 

This makes recovery faster and smoother, but the incision is also very vulnerable while healing. As you heal, you’ll be able to take on more of your usual routine. 

Until then, it’s important to take it easy. Do not lift heavy objects, go swimming, play contact sports, or do anything that could put your eyes at risk until you are cleared by your eye doctor. 

2. Use Your Eye Drops

A common side effect of LASIK is dry eye. This happens because the flap created in your cornea can sever some nerves. 

These nerves tell your brain when it is time for more tears. Until your eyes heal, you may experience some dry eye symptoms.

This can be difficult to combat because your eyes are so vulnerable after LASIK. Dry eye may give you a strong desire to rub your eyes. 

This is never a good idea, but it is especially dangerous while your eyes are in recovery mode. Rubbing your eyes can reopen the flap causing complications.

Lubricating eye drops are a great way to manage these symptoms safely. 

3. Use Your Post-Op Eye Drops as Directed

Your ophthalmologist will prescribe antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, and lubricating eye drops to use for the first week or two after your LASIK procedure. It’s crucial to use these drops exactly as instructed to prevent infection, reduce swelling and irritation, and keep your eyes adequately moisturized. 

Set phone alarms to remember when to use your eye drops throughout the day. Always wash your hands thoroughly before handling the bottles to avoid contaminating them. 

Be sure to keep the tip of the bottle from touching your eye or any other surface to maintain sterility. Use the drops even if your eyes feel fine since they aid recovery. Stopping drops early can impair healing. 

Consistent use of post-LASIK eye drops is critical for optimal results and comfort after your procedure.

4. Wear Protective Eyewear When Needed

Your eyes will likely be highly sensitive to irritation, sunlight, and injury for at least the first week after LASIK. Whenever you go outside during the day, be sure to wear the protective sunglasses your LASIK surgeon recommends. 

Even on cloudy days, UV light can damage your eyes post-surgery. If you’re around chemical fumes, construction sites, or dust, ask your doctor about goggles to shield your eyes. 

At night, avoid rubbing your eyes vigorously so the flap created during surgery stays in place. Use lubricating eye ointment before bed to prevent the eye flaps from drying out and dislodging. 

Protecting your eyes from sunlight, dust, and irritation will allow your LASIK flaps to properly adhere and heal. Follow all instructions from your LASIK surgeon on wearing protective eyewear to keep your eyes safe.

5. Follow Up With Your Eye Doctor

It’s important to attend all follow-up appointments with your ophthalmologist after your LASIK surgery. They will examine your eyes to ensure proper healing and check your vision progress during recovery. 

Always consult your eye doctor if you have any concerns or experience worrisome symptoms during the healing process.

Are you interested in starting your journey to vision freedom? Schedule a LASIK consultation at Missouri Eye Institute in Branson, MO, today!


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